How an Estonian IT-company became my favourite client

Usually our news articles talk about some awesome campaign or event we carried out for our clients. But in reality, most of our work is not at all glamorous. Therefore, this time I decided to write about a completely different client. A client who without having done anything revolutionary in the media has nevertheless become one of my favourite clients.

When you ask a young PR consultant who their dream client would be, they will definitely name big and well-known international brands. Over the years, however, I have learned to enjoy collaborations that begin with a letter from an unknown company. I google it, admit to myself that I have no experience with such a company – and the idea that we could embark on a story-telling journey together makes my heart beat faster.

Lengthy launch

This is how my collaboration with the Estonian IT company Finestmedia began. Starting our cooperation was a long process, many times longer than usual. As a first step, we wanted to set up a strategic framework, but the management of the company decided to do some in-house pre-work before engaging an external partner. It was necessary to understand what the company's expectations for communication were, what kind of a vision it wanted to move towards, and what kind of a company it wanted to become over the next few years.

We put the process on hold and I was ready for things to end there. But Finestmedia is not the kind of company that ends things there. Nearly half a year later, the homework was done and the 7-member steering group was excited to begin the process of developing a communication strategy.

Three months, five strategy meetings and more than 70 hours of work later, a strategy and PR plan had been completed, with nearly 20 employees having contributed into the process. These people did not just send me comments via email - I met with all of them to discuss necessary actions and messages. 

This process really made me a fan  of the company, its people and everything that comes with them. By the time the strategy was completed, I had patted four different dogs at Finestmedia’s office, tried all sorts of lemonades and yogurts in their fully stocked fridge, had taken part in Friday's pastry mornings and celebrations of different events.

Valued people, meaningful work

Today we have come to the point where I always offer a meeting to discuss any upcoming project or news because every encounter is so inspiring. The company employs about 100 people and when I ring the front door I always get a familiar welcoming and invitation to enter from the bureau manager.  If I see white hair on the elevator carpet, I know I will be greeted by a friendly old Husky called Happy. I prefer to arrive at the meeting about 15 minutes before the start because I can walk from door to door, say hello to everyone and chat a bit.

People working at Finestmedia are goal-oriented, but first and foremost they value people in their organization and their partners. They appreciate different opinions, they understand that everyone has their own strengths and weaknesses, they are frank when they feel our message is empty content-wise, and they trust me when I suspect some message sounds boring. And what's especially nice is that they actually give positive feedback like "I really like this sentence" or "I like how you think, way to go here!!!".

Of course, a good client is someone with whom you can do valuable work. I am very pleased that I have been able to do so many activities with Finestmedia that have been aimed not only towards greater media coverage or better visibility but also at a stronger organization, success in sales and greater attractiveness in the labour market.

I feel that in less than a year, I have become a part of this company. I'm engaged not only in branding projects, but also in defining service domains, organizational culture, procurement process, and many other activities that the PR service provider rarely gets the chance to be involved in. Being a company that until now hadn't had any previous experience with PR agencies, they have completely redefined the value I can create as a PR consultant.

Helena Peterson

PR Strategies Partner, Strategic Consultant