A Boston native, NYU graduate and President of Can Publicity, Danna Can prides herself on the close relationship she cultivates with clients and media alike. Creative, persuasive and concise writing and pitching skills coupled with unwavering follow-up capabilities are the consistent trademarks of a Can Campaign. Can is always accessible and her work ethic is summarized by the following “The success of my clients is a reflection of my success. I will always go the extra mile to ensure a campaign is promoted to satisfaction and completion.” The majority of Can Publicity clients are referrals from existing clients or by way of media connections. Read our interview with the lovely Danna below…
What motivated and inspired you to start your own business?
I went to NYU and remained in NYC to launch my career in the Public Relations industry. I learned from some of the top players in the PR game and immediately earned placements in top tier magazines. It was thrilling. When personal circumstances urged me to relocate to Miami in 2001, I worked for one of the top PR agencies in the area. One of my roles was to acquire new business. I was in the process of signing an account that I had developed a close relationship. I expressed admiration at their having left the safety of corporate America to pursue their passion. They encouraged me to leave the agency and start my own firm. That very day (well after my formal two week period) they signed as the first Can Publicity client. Courageous entrepreneurs encouraging other like minded individuals to believe in themselves and start their own business; that’s what it’s all about!
Tell us about your business.
Established by Danna Can in 2001, Can Publicity specializes in full service public relations campaigns in the fitness, fashion, beauty, lifestyle and retail categories. Can’s strategically executed promotions have successfully launched brands and new businesses by generating awareness and effectively building that sought after buzz and recognition with the ultimate goal of increased sales and traffic.
Where is your business based?
What were the first few steps you took to get your business up and running?
I created an image for my company. I wanted the Can Publicity brand to convey femininity, fashion and leadership. I created a brand identity board, developed a logo, made cards, letterheads and the other basic essentials.
What has been the most effective way of raising awareness of your business and getting new customers?
Social media is a great vehicle to spread the word about my business and highlight benefits of a successful media campaign. It allows me to showcase my work and gain credibility. However, I have built my business largely on word of mouth. Fortunately, most of my clients come by way of referral. There is no better endorsement than a satisfied client.
What have been your biggest challenges so far?
It can be difficult to keep a steady flow of clients. I cater to small businesses so often time PR/marketing budgets are first to be eliminated.
How did you overcome these challenges?
To keep a steady influx of clients, I have broadened the scope of my expertise. I used to primarily focus on fitness, fashion and beauty because those are some of the more fun things to write about and represent. However, more recently I have diversified my client base. So as long as I believe you have a story that is buzz-worthy and I can secure media coverage for your brand, I will sign the client. I am able to do this because PR is a formula that you can apply to any industry. It just takes perseverance to land a story. I have always been a persistent publicist and that is one of my keys to success.
How do you keep motivated through difficult times?
There are two things that keep me motivated through difficult times. 1) Knowing that I don’t want to work for anyone else, 2) Knowing that I am setting an example for my nine-year-old daughter who is the light of my life.
How do you distinguish yourself from your competitors?
I am an honest publicist and lead my business with the same moral compass that guides me through my personal life. Many PR people over promise and under deliver. That has soured the field to many potential clients. I lead my business with integrity and am always honest about the results I believe I can deliver.
What is the best advice you have received recently?
Treat your own business as a client. Always make time to promote your own personal brand.
What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs?
Don’t give up. Always remember why you started and know that practice makes perfect. You won’t get it all done in a day but, have patience, believe in yourself and your ability to get things done and your business will flourish. Remember that even if you didn’t get the results you were hoping for, within every opportunity is the chance to learn.
What is your favorite business tool or resource?
I couldn’t live without Cision, which is a media database for public relations professionals.
What social media outlets do you use? List them below.
What is a good article or book you have read recently?
I like listening to Brendon Burchard Podcasts. He keeps me focused and motivated.
What are you currently learning about for your business or looking for help with?
When my clients are featured in the media, especially broadcast, I’d like to learn how to create a graphic that has the network, client info, my info and brief info about the segment. I know how to do it in a basic format but, I wish I were more savvy with graphics.
What are your goals for the next few months and how are you striving to achieve them?
For the next few months, I plan to continue to secure impressive media coverage and continue to increase the ROI for my existing client base. I am also focusing on growing my business by signing more clients.