Earlier this week, and as seen mentioned in previous posts here on Stilettogal, my business partner Onelia offered up her advice on PR for businesses, both in agency and DIY format. Today we're going for a walk in Onelia Estudillo's stilettos (YSL Platform Tributes in Bronze Python, as seen in the photo!), as she tells me more about what her position as the CEO of Conspiracy LA PR and Events entails, how she dealt with the worst thing that ever happened to her in business, and how her mother serves as a daily inspiration in her life.
Hillary Gadsby: What your duties are as the founder of Conspiracy LA and what do you do for your clients?
Onelia Estudillo: Conspiracy LA is a full service brand consulting, marketing, public relations and events firm based in sunny Southern California. Conspiracy LA's philosophy focuses on three platforms multi-tiered business development, experiential and lifestyle marketing; social media and curatorial and event direction in branding clients across fashion, beauty, media and literati. Handling campaigns and event productions from 5 to 25,000 people, in big picture-little details fashion, Conspiracy LA's management and project capabilities are geared towards bringing clients high level exposure, reinforced brand awareness and increased brand loyalty on a quantifiable level with new and existing niche market segments.
HG: What motivates and drives you about working in PR and events?
OE: The creativity that each client allows us conjure with every project. This industry affords me the luxury to think outside the box at every turn - from strategic alliances that further product innovation and connectivity, to over the top events that let our imaginations flourish, every new idea we come up with increases our ability to provide unique solutions to our customers and clients. That's not something everyone can say about their job and for that, I'm truly thankful and blessed.
HG: Who inspires you the most?
OE: My mother. She has met every challenge in life with the grace and understanding of Mother Theresa but the pragmatism and leadership of Nelson Mandela. The Ying and Yang of being a businesswoman AND a loving, affectionate matriarch are often conflicting but she does it flawlessly, and stylishly to boot.
HG: What is the worst thing that ever happened to you in business and how did you overcome it?
OE: The economic downturn had taken its toll on the event industry early in 2009 and in turn, budgets dwindled and left us with clients who wanted to work with us, but had little to no financial bandwidth to play with. Not only did we make smaller budgets work with a little creativity to keep the clients, we also offered our services and experiences to other industries we did not have experience in: we got our hands dirty and took some time to learn them from the inside out, sometimes even offering to do more work and put in more hours than our contracts entailed. When you show clients and potential customers your willingness to pivot and be a part of their team, as opposed to an outside "vendor", great things happen.
HG: Tell me about your biggest shoe splurge.
OE: All my Alaia's. They are all works of art.
HG: Fill in the blank: my favorite shoes are a pair of _____ because ________.
OE: Truthfully? My slim Havaianas flip flops. I'm a bohemian at heart and an islander by heritage so any time I can schlep around town doing errands in these I'm pretty ecstatic about life.
HG: What 3 things are you most passionate about and why?
OE: Family and Friends. As I grow older, I am thankful for all those who have really believed in me. I also realize just how important it is to foster strong connections and surround yourself with quality people. You are a combination of the 5 people you hang out with the most. Choose wisely and more importantly, be worthy.
Travel. But not just the vacation kind, the Discover-How-The-Rest-of-The-World lives kind. It opens your heart and your mind, and reaches into places you never thought you had in you. It gives you new found appreciation for things you always take for granted. I've always wanted to be a connoisseur of all the things this world has to offer and travelling is my way of finding inspiration and affirmation that despite how wonderful (or difficult) things get, there is always so much more than just you and your world.
Yoga. It has saved my life and my mind countless times. I meditate and do yoga stretches every morning and night. It's like a massage for your insides and your psyche. Having these quiet moments of breath and awareness always keeps life in perspective.