Today we’d like to introduce you to Alexandra Lasky.
Alexandra, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
I am President and Co-Founder of The Influence, a Los Angeles-based influencer marketing, talent booking, public relations and experiential events agency which launched in November 2016.
I am originally from NY and relocated to Los Angeles in January of 2009. Prior to founding my company, I worked consecutively at three different agencies, mainly focused in the PR and event space, focusing on fashion, beauty, hospitality, nonprofit, film and nightlife brands.
I was at my previous agency for nine years, in the role of VP prior to departing to create The Influence with my business partner, tech entrepreneur Chad Weinman. I attended UMASS Amherst and graduated from their Isenberg School of Management, with a major in marketing.
My career has been a natural transition, beginning with an internship at Juicy Couture’s NY showroom during my senior year of college. My success has been a result of lots of hard work, commitment to this career path, and dedication. My success has also been derived by recognizing change in the industry and evolving with the ever-changing PR landscape.
What began as a career with a traditional PR focus eventually transitioned to cultivating celebrity brand alignments, influencer deals, and social media partnerships. I apply my 15+ years of PR experience to cater to the needs of our clients. I pride myself as a “key connector” amongst my industry peers. I try to always think of things in a creative way, to come up with new opportunities that will move the needle for clients, both influencers, entities, and brands we work with.
I am always reading digital publications, scrolling on social media, watching television, having conversations, attending events, and more to be “in the know” on what is current and relevant. I am fortunate to be able to quickly pick up on trends across all facets of the industry and then apply them to our agency work.
In addition to my dedication across fashion, film, hospitality and entertainment, I am also involved in various nonprofits such as The Race To Erase MS, Rhonda’s Kiss, Greater West Hollywood Food Coalition, Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDs Foundation, and Amfar, among others. I am also the founder of a newly established entertainment industry peer group called #TheTribe.
Has it been a smooth road?
Nothing is ever 100% smooth but with hard work, dedication, concentration, and big picture thinking, the more you are driving on newly paved concrete. The more frantic or overreactive you are, the more potholes cobblestone roads you will see in your path.
There are always things that happen – i.e., a major celebrity you had locked for an event has to cancel, a story is published with one crucial word incorrect, a photo runs with your client missing from a caption even after it was confirmed to be included, an actor in a movie you rep misses an important flight, a package does not arrive from FedEx…. but you have to roll with the punches, and problem solve in real time.
It may feel like the end of the world, but there are surgeons performing open heart surgery and police officers locking up criminals where minutes can be a life or death factor. You have to keep it all in perspective.
Another struggle is when a client has all the makings for success, but it may not catch on right away. The pressure to help them succeed can be a lot, but patience is also crucial in this business.
So let’s switch gears a bit and go into The Influence in West Hollywood story. Tell us more about the business.
At The Influence we leverage the power of influencers to create more authentic connections between brands and their audiences. We provide our clients with unmatched access to an expansive network of tastemakers that includes everyone from high-profile actors to niche bloggers. We also bring influencers we represent to brands, presenting them with influential names to push the needle on their products and creating synergistic pairings.
The Influence also has a strong PR division, in which we secure and create extensive media coverage for clients across all facets of press, ranging from new media to traditional media, across the fashion, lifestyle, luxury, hospitality/nightlife, talent/entertainment, film, beauty/wellness, fitness, and nonprofit PR sectors.
In addition to PR and talent wrangling, we also offer a laundry list of event services inclusive of event design and planning, as well as social media consulting. We stand out in the fact that we are a “one-stop shop” for clients, offering a variety of services they otherwise would need a multitude of agencies to jointly handle.
At The Influence, we focus on talent and influencer branding and activations, talent and influencer engagement, product seeding, publicity and media services, brand consulting, social media placement, experiential events, small-scale event design and talent wrangling services. The Influence is headquartered in Los Angeles with a current staff of 10. We spearhead national, regional, local and international PR and influencer campaigns all over the U.S. as well as overseas with clients based in London, France, and Australia.
Being a startup, just about to approach our two year anniversary, I also believe in supporting other startups. Not every company starting out has a big budget, so I find creative ways to partner with startups or incorporate them into events and initiatives we are doing in order to help raise their profiles. If I truly believe in a company or brand, they are dedicated to success; I want nothing more than to see them succeed. By owning my own company, it allows me the ability to work with the brands and entities that I want to work with. I am very fortunate in that respect.
I am very proud of the successes and attention we secure for our brands, venue, and entities we work with, as their success is our success. The more press a client gets, the more website clicks they get, the more product orders they receive, the more people that go see their movie… all is affected by how hard we work as an agency behind the scenes.
I am also proud of success from cross-pollinating clients. We are able to create unique experiences to benefit two,three, four clients simultaneously.
I also take pride in always being responsive to both clients, contacts and new inquiries. Being able to multi-task is key in this business, and being able to split your time and attention is a job in itself.
Is our city a good place to do what you do?
Los Angeles is the hub of the entertainment world, a blend of culture, creativity, and style in an incredible backdrop. It could not be a more relevant location for our type of business. If you were to launch a career in the PR, influencer branding or celebrity booking space, I would definitely recommend kickstarting it in LA. People in LA understand how to seek opportunity and how to create opportunity. People in this city have a drive to succeed driven by passion, unlike any other place in the world.
There are so many incredible entrepreneurs and industry pioneers to learn from. There are endless internship opportunities.Just be persistent and proactive, and the right opportunity will be yours.
People often say I am lucky or relate things to luck in general, but there is no such thing as luck. There is an opportunity and what you do with it dictates the outcome. You create your own luck.
And as far as the city improving, well, the main issue is the homelessness problem. It is getting worse by the day. There needs to be a major action to help with this issue. The entertainment industry has several organizations that help, but it is not enough. It has grown by 75% in the last six years. We need to do more.
- Website: www.theinfluence.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org