Build Awareness through Media Relations
Paul Mitchell Schools
Paul Mitchell the School–Houston is the largest of 96 facilities nationwide that prepare thousands of men and women each year for productive, rewarding careers in cosmetology. Each school is developed in partnership with local entrepreneurs, and Franchise Times has ranked the Paul Mitchell Partner School program as one of the ten fastest growing franchises in the United States.
- Just three weeks prior to its grand opening, Paul Mitchell the School–Houston hired FrogDog to help plan logistics for the event, publicize it, and solicit support from local government and business leaders.
- The client’s primary goal was to build awareness that would attract students and customers to a location made difficult to access by freeway construction.
- FrogDog was charged with simultaneously touting a national brand and introducing its local partners.
- The account team also faced the logistical challenge of working media interviews into national CEO and cofounder John Paul DeJoria’s very demanding schedule.
- PaulMitchell Schoolstraditionally have not paid for advertising or marketing, instead relying on word of mouth to drive enrollment and business.
The FrogDog Solution
- FrogDog took a hands-on approach to managing the relationship and educating a client unfamiliar with marketing about what could be achieved through event planning, media relations, and community outreach. Members of the account team visited the school regularly and went under the clippers to get a better feel for the customer experience.
- FrogDog developed two distinct media pitches: a business angle that presented local partners Sandy and Rosie Matos as successful entrepreneurs, and a fashion/society pitch that leveraged DiJoria’s celebrity.
- Event support included scheduling three photo shoots for DiJoria during the grand opening. One of these, for Skirt! Magazine, required DiJoria to wear a skirt and be photographed with bunnies to illustrate Paul Mitchell’s opposition to animal testing. FrogDog conferred with People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals to assure the rabbits’ handling met the organization’s strict humanitarian standards.
- Using its positive City Hall relationships, FrogDog secured a proclamation commemorating the facility’s opening and declaring “Future Professionals Day:”
- FrogDog also advised the client on joining the local chamber of commerce.
- The day after the Houston Chronicle ran a feature on DiJoria in its Thursday “Preview” entertainment section, calls to the school overloaded its phone system, and drop-in customers waited up to an hour for a hair cut. No wait had been required the previous week.
- FrogDog also secured a Sunday small-business feature in the Chronicle about the Matos.
- In addition to the Skirt! Magazine layout, two other society magazines published articles about the grand-opening event.