From Intern to critical team member

Samantha Carter’s Summer Internship at CRC

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Hi! My name is Samantha Carter, and I was fortunate to join the CRC team during the summer of 2019. I am a rising junior at Villanova University studying Communications with a focus on Public Relations.

I grew up with both of my parents working full-time, specifically my Dad who was working in the PR field. I remember going to work with both parents a great deal when I was younger. At my Dad’s office, I enjoyed writing and creating lists, organizing product and editing photos taken in front of the green screen. (Receiving samples from many of the brands I loved didn’t hurt either!) As I got older, I came to realize my passion for brands and storytelling was similar to that of my Dad’s, which drove my curiosity for PR and marketing to even further heights. Without any public relations experience, I was super excited to dive into the world of PR – CRC provided me with a one-of-a-kind hands-on opportunity for which I will forever be grateful! 

Rewind to my first day at CRC (ah!)… I was immediately thrown into things, learning quickly the many aspects of a PR agency. Cindy, Amira, Rachel, Kelly and Hollis welcomed me with open arms, and I quickly began to feel one with the team! I helped the growing agency by contributing to work for amazing clients such as Ceramedx, DKNY, Echo, Hammer & Nails, Hanes Hosiery, L’eggs, Joules, KISS and SimplyProtein. We achieved impressive placements in popular publications such as Buzzfeed, Good Housekeeping, O, The Oprah Magazine, Woman’s Day and more. I learned the importance of having strong communication and loyal relationships with our clients.

 Day in the life of a PRA at CRC…go! I started every morning conducting media monitoring and updating my team on any media placements. Working for a boutique agency enabled me to contribute to multiple aspects of the job, something not many interns are able to do at larger agencies. I sat in on client calls, took notes, created and sent recaps and even contributed my own ideas! I was able to showcase my creative side by designing various themed mood boards and pitching them to editors. It made my day when editors would respond to my pitches. Most notably, Chief Fashion Director at Hearst loved my Joules Peter Rabbit mood board so much she posted several photos of her daughter wearing the collection on her Instagram (31.6K followers). Writing and delivering pitches to editors under the supervision of my team helped drive traffic to our clients’ brands and taught me how to communicate effectively.

 While we were always working hard, we also had our fair share of fun outside of the office. We spent one afternoon in Williamsburg, Brooklyn handing out brochures and pamphlets in order to increase traffic for the new grooming salon Hammer & Nails. We also spent a day “modeling” Hanes hosiery on the streets of NYC, creating photos which are still being posted to the L’eggs Instagram account. Some of my favorite memories include the two sampling events we organized with SimplyProtein, including one at Hearst’s Good Housekeeping Kitchen of the Future, both having a successful turnout of editors and other notable people.

One larger project I helped spearhead is a college brand ambassador outreach campaign, #LeggsU, for our client HanesBrands with a focus on L’eggs Sheer Energy and propelling the #LeggsGetItDone movement. I was successful in reaching out to many sororities at Villanova University, University of North Carolina, Elon University, Seton Hall University and The College of New Jersey, among others, and securing several partnerships.

CRC allowed me to be involved in every opportunity, believing in and supporting me every step of the way! They trusted me to help present the 2020 PR Plan to the Joules team at their showroom. I also attended my first deskside with a fashion editor at Shape Magazine, which was super thrilling!! CRC showed me what it means to be a collaborative member of a great team.

Thank you, CRC, for giving me the best first internship – with advice, memories and people I will hold on to forever!

As one chapter ends, another begins…

Xx

Samantha Carter

CRC Named One of the Top 22 PR Firms in New York City for the Second Year in a Row

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Expertise.com has chosen CRC as one of the top 22 Public Relations firms in New York City for the second year in a row. Over 2,000 PR firms were evaluated and 22 were chosen. Expertise’s goal is to connect people with the best local experts. They evaluated the numerous PR firms on more than 25 variables across five categories; reputation, credibility, experience, availability and professionalism.

About CRC, Inc.

CRC is an independently owned full-service PR and digital marketing agency with a long-standing reputation of creating innovative campaigns to help its clients achieve their annual business goals. Established in 2007, CRC was recognized in 2018 as one of the top NYC 20 PR firms, selected from more than 2,000 firms based on reputation, credibility, experience, and professionalism as ranked by Expertise.com. Cindy Riccio was an honoree of the 2018 Top Women in PR Awards by PR News. The firm has also been recognized with awards including a Silver Stevie for their new product launch for Kenneth Cole Connect and was named by the New York Observer as one of the top New York Specialty Agencies. The Holmes Report named CRC as a finalist in 2017 for the North America Sabre Awards: Innovation and Insight in Communications and Marketing for Perfect Corp’s app launch in the U.S., YouCam Makeup. To learn more, visit www.cricciocomm.com.

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CRC’s Coachella 2019 Experience

By: Amira Clement

 

CRC took another exciting pop-culture trip to Coachella this Spring for their 20th anniversary to implement guerilla marketing efforts for SimplyProtein™ & Ceramedx. Our small and mighty team PR and digital marketing agency prides it’s selves in building brand awareness for our client through special events, influencer marketing, sampling initiatives and traditional media outreach.

Day One (Friday, April 12th)

Once we arrived to Palm Springs, CRC hit the ground running. We checked into our hotel and headed straight to the Rachel Zoe #ZOEAsis party. This was an exciting one for us because of the partnership with Zappo’s and our accessories/lifestyle client, Echo. The party, held at the popular, The Parker Palm Springs hotel was filled with interactive and instagrammable moments. The highlights included a glitter bar, sunglass design bar, illustrations wrapped in Echo scarves and a Sephora video station. There was a robust list of influencers and celebrities in attendance including, Rachel Zoe, Victoria Justice and Quincey Jones, who took part in photo-opps that went live on TheZoeReport.com the morning after.

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Day Two (Saturday, April 13th)

The second day was festival day! …CRC started the day by attending the Arrive Hotel x Rolling Stone Pool Party located just three minutes from our hotel. We took advantage of this opportunity to sample plant-based SimplyProtein™ protein bar to stay nourished and Ceramedx sample packets to help festival goers keep their skin moisturized in the desert. The pool party included numerous vendors such as a bandanna creation station, fragrance stations, “create your own Rolling Stone magazine cover” station and a special live performance by a surprise artist. Next up: the actual festival.  We sampled SimplyProtein™ during the festival which ended up being a huge sampling success throughout the weekend.  In addition to sampling, we partnered with two micro-influencers, Ana Kcira and Arielle Berneman that created user generated content for SimplyProtein’s growing social media channels.

 

Day Three (Sunday, April 14th)

Over 100,000 people attended Coachella to see the best of the best artists perform, including Weezer, Zedd, J. Balvin, Katy Perry, Billie Elish, Wiz Khalifa, Ariana Grande and special closing performances by N’SYNC, Nicki Minaj, Khalid, P.Diddy and Mase, to name a select few from the night. Once the festival ended (at 2am PST!), we checked the campground sites to see the status of our SimplyProtein™ and Ceramedx sampling and there was nothing left!

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Another awesome year of cool parties, vendors and yummy food, we got to check out fabulous activations we had the chance to witness at the 20th anniversary.

Amazon

Prior to the festival, Amazon installed lockers for direct deliveries both before and during Coachella, for attendees to order items.

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YSL

Yves St. Laurent hosted a gas station beauty pop-up at Coachella. It included a retro make-up vending machine designed to mimic a gas station with cosmetic refills instead of gasoline to create a make-up oasis.

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And we can’t wait for next year!

CRC Adds Hammer & Nails, Grooming Shop for Guys, to Expanding Beauty and Grooming Account List

New York, NY (May 20, 2019) – CRC, Inc., a leading independent PR and digital marketing agency in NYC, has been selected to launch the first Hammer & Nails grooming shop for guys in the northeast at a Williamsburg location, this coming June 2019.

 

“We are thrilled to be working on launching Hammer & Nails’ Brooklyn location and look forward to creating an atmosphere in Brooklyn with proven signature offerings in the Summer months where men can get pampered, relax and leave feeling polished. There is such a great masculine energy in the space already, and we will take it a step farther, incorporating events and themed days like ‘National Bro Day’ into the mix,” said Cindy Riccio, President and Founder of CRC. 

 

Hammer & Nails was first seen on ABC’s “Shark Tank” in 2013 when Founder, Michael Elliot, recognized the need for male-centric nail care after he found himself feeling out of place in nail salons designed for women. This one-stop grooming shop provides hand and foot care along with haircuts and straight razor shaves. After the success of Elliot’s first location in Los Angeles, over 300 licenses have been awarded.

 

As a first-to-market concept in the men’s grooming space, Hammer & Nails, is an emerging brand in a rapidly growing industry that is projected to reach $26 billion in sales by 2020. 

 

“My team is so excited to launch the Williamsburg Hammer & Nails grooming shop as the first in the Northeast region. Being able to provide an environment where men can unwind and have the opportunity to choose from a variety of spa-like treatments created just for them is such a novel, unique experience. CRC has proven and extensive knowledge on what consumers are looking for and I have no doubt that with their help, the grand opening will be very successful,” commented Anthony David, Brooklyn Hammer & Nails franchise owner.

 

Like the 10 other locations currently in the franchise, Hammer & Nails in Brooklyn will act as THE grooming shop for men in Brooklyn and the surrounding area. From a complimentary beverage, the option for noise cancelling headphones, to personal TVs and more, Hammer & Nails provides for the client to have a special experience in every way. Through their understanding of consumer needs, comfort and attraction, CRC will launch the Brooklyn Hammer & Nails location, making it into a destination.

 

 

The Brooklyn Hammer & Nails location is based at: 97 N 10th Street // Brooklyn, NY 11249

 

 

About CRC, Inc.

CRC is an independently owned full-service PR and digital marketing agency with a long-standing reputation of creating innovative campaigns to help its clients achieve their annual business goals. Established in 2007, CRC was recognized in 2018 as one of the top NYC 20 PR firms, selected from more than 2,000 firms based on reputation, credibility, experience, and professionalism as ranked by Expertise.com. Cindy Riccio was an honoree of the 2018 Top Women in PR Awards by PR News. The firm has also been recognized with awards including a Silver Stevie for their new product launch for Kenneth Cole Connect and was named by the New York Observer as one of the top New York Specialty Agencies. The Holmes Report named CRC as a finalist in 2017 for the North America Sabre Awards: Innovation and Insight in Communications and Marketing for Perfect Corp’s app launch in the U.S., YouCam Makeup. To learn more, visit www.cricciocomm.com.

 

About Hammer & Nails

Our goal at Hammer & Nails Grooming Shop for Guys is to give any guy a place to go where he can take care of his hands, get and hair in a man cave environment. To learn more about the brand, service offerings and locations, visit: https://hammerandnailsgrooming.com/

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Cindy Riccio Named 2019 Top Women in PR Awards Honoree

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Every year, PR News highlights a select group of female PR executives who are not only best in class in public relations, but are also leaders and team builders who continue to inspire the next generation of women. These women exemplify what it takes to rise to the C-suite level at brands, nonprofit organizations and agencies. This year, our very own Cindy Riccio, President & Founder of CRC Inc., was named to the PR News’ 2019 Top Women in PR Awards honoree list and was recognized at a special luncheon at the Grand Hyatt New York City on January 25, 2019. 

Cindy was honored to be included in such good company of other high-profile communicators, including Anita Marsh and Nicole Draznik of Procter & Gamble, Juliet Niczewicz of PayPal, Sukhi Sahni of Capital One, Jessica Stacey of Sephora, Monique Kelley of Weber Shandwick, Jennifer Risi of Oglivy and more.

 

“In today’s fast-changing media landscape that includes digitally driven tactics including algorithms and augmented reality, we’re confident that CRC’s vision and capabilities are steadfast amongst the blurring lines between marketing disciplines. Our desire to grow and embrace change will not only keep us humble, hungry and smart every day, but also dedicated to our client’s marketing communications needs with a hyper focus on strategic, creative, omni-channel communications programs that continue to drive sales, engagement and awareness,” Cindy stated at the podium as an honoree.

 

“Our influencer marketing and SEO/SEM practice has driven strong results and solutions for many of our e-commerce clients in addition to driving growth on social media channels for increased distribution opportunities with major retailers nationwide from Macy’s to Target and Amazon.com,” Cindy concluded.

 

We couldn’t be more proud of our fearless leader, Cindy Riccio!

 

Scandals,shakedowns and disruptions: "Facebook's troubled teenage years " by,Cindy Riccio

As the mother of teenagers, I know first-hand the challenges of ushering children through their formative years—and I see that since Facebook became an adolescent, they too have been experiencing growing pains.  In just the past few years, the 14-year-old Facebook has  frustrated advertisers  with a lack of transparency and brand safety. Additionally, Facebook faced backlash when the site—without permission from its users—allowed access to the  personal data of 87 million Americans  to Cambridge Analytica, a research firm aligned with the Trump campaign. The social network had also unwittingly provided a platform for Russian propagandists to  spread misinformation  about the 2016 election.   Furthermore, Facebook employers have accused the social media network of operating a political monoculture that is intolerant of diversity in ideology   Prominent politicians have accused Facebook of restricting conservative opinions. As a result, CEO Mark Zuckerberg and COO Sheryl Sandberg have testified in front of Congress about how Facebook uses its data. More recently, Facebook announced its biggest security breach to date, when hackers stole the login information of up to 50 million users.  In Facebook’s second quarter 2018 earnings report, they had 2.2 billion active monthly users worldwide. Globally, the social network earned $13.0 billion in ad revenue, a 42% increase from the prior year.   Although revenue and usage continue to be impressive, there are caution flags ahead   According to  Recode , in second quarter, Facebook’s daily active users compared to first quarter grew by only 22 million globally, the smallest increase since going public six years ago. In North America and Europe, Facebook’s two most profitable markets, growth has stagnated.  Another alarming trend for Facebook is that many teens consider the platform passé.  eMarketer  says nowadays, less than half of Internet users between the ages of 12 to 17 will access Facebook on any screen. It’s been reported this year Facebook will lose two million users under the age of 24. Conversely, an additional 500,000 adults age 55+ are expected to sign up with the social network. As growth flattens and teens and young adults are fleeing the social network for other platforms, there is pressure for Facebook to find new ways to grow revenue.  As Facebook seeks new revenue opportunities, they have also recently experienced losses in key senior management positions at two of its high-profile acquisitions; Instagram and WhatsApp. In 2012 Facebook acquired Instagram, a mobile photo sharing app, for $1 billion. Two years later Facebook acquired WhatsApp, a messaging app used on phones for $19 billion. Initially, Facebook had provided autonomy with the two acquisitions, but with an emphasis on growing revenue, that has changed.   The founders of WhatsApp, Jan Koum and Brian Acton, left Facebook first   In a  Forbes  interview, Acton expressed regret at selling the app to Facebook and expressed displeasure with Facebook’s plan of targeting ads to users. Last March, in the aftermath of the Cambridge Analytica revelation, Acton, a long-time privacy advocate, initiated a #DeleteFacebook movement on Twitter.   In September 2018, Instagram’s two founders Mike Krieger and Kevin Systrom left Facebook.   It was widely thought Krieger and Systrom were clashing with Zuckerberg over Instagram’s future role at Facebook, as the social network looks for additional sources of revenue. Instagram has been a bright spot for Facebook. In June 2018 Instagram reported it had one billion monthly active users worldwide, a tenfold increase since February 2013. While Facebook is losing younger users, Instagram is expected to add 1.6 million users age 24 and younger in the U.S. this year. Instagram Stories, which copied Snapchat, now has 400 million daily users, doubling all of Snapchat. (A Facebook version of Stories has 300 million users and becoming more popular than their news feed). More importantly, Instagram is expected to produce $5.5 billion in ad revenue in the U.S., an increase of 70% from 2017.   There has also been some pushback from Facebook with advertisers   WPP’s GroupM, the world’s largest ad agency, is said to be looking at alternatives to Facebook in the wake of brand safety and a lack of transparency and responsiveness. Moreover, the digital duopoly of Alphabet and Facebook, which accounts for about 60% of U.S. digital ad spend, also raises anxieties on Madison Avenue, concerned the two companies have become too powerful and are looking at other digital sources to invest in.   Besides taking some time off, what is next for the two co-founders of Instagram?   One of their pet projects was the recently lunched IGTV, a standalone video app allowing content to run for up to one hour for popular or verified users. Facebook had delayed the roll out of IGTV since it was a potential competitor to their struggling Facebook Watch product. A standalone video product may be in the offering. Another area the co-founders were said to be developing was a standalone e-commerce app. In addition, there may have been other products they were thinking about to expand Instagram. In any event, whatever they develop, they will no longer be answerable to Facebook. Without Krieger and Systrom’s input, will Instagram’s extraordinary popularity among teens and young adults continue under the direction of Facebook? That may be the biggest change of all.  I also believe that it would bode well for Facebook to take a word of advice from their former Instagram colleague, Kevin Systrom. On a blog post, Kevin said that he wanted to take time off to explore their ideas, creativity and curiosity again. These are wise words for data-driven Facebook if they want to engage my teenagers.    Via: Bulldog Reporter, www.agilitypr.com

As the mother of teenagers, I know first-hand the challenges of ushering children through their formative years—and I see that since Facebook became an adolescent, they too have been experiencing growing pains.

In just the past few years, the 14-year-old Facebook has frustrated advertisers with a lack of transparency and brand safety. Additionally, Facebook faced backlash when the site—without permission from its users—allowed access to the personal data of 87 million Americans to Cambridge Analytica, a research firm aligned with the Trump campaign. The social network had also unwittingly provided a platform for Russian propagandists to spread misinformation about the 2016 election.

Furthermore, Facebook employers have accused the social media network of operating a political monoculture that is intolerant of diversity in ideology

Prominent politicians have accused Facebook of restricting conservative opinions. As a result, CEO Mark Zuckerberg and COO Sheryl Sandberg have testified in front of Congress about how Facebook uses its data. More recently, Facebook announced its biggest security breach to date, when hackers stole the login information of up to 50 million users.

In Facebook’s second quarter 2018 earnings report, they had 2.2 billion active monthly users worldwide. Globally, the social network earned $13.0 billion in ad revenue, a 42% increase from the prior year.

Although revenue and usage continue to be impressive, there are caution flags ahead

According to Recode, in second quarter, Facebook’s daily active users compared to first quarter grew by only 22 million globally, the smallest increase since going public six years ago. In North America and Europe, Facebook’s two most profitable markets, growth has stagnated.

Another alarming trend for Facebook is that many teens consider the platform passé. eMarketer says nowadays, less than half of Internet users between the ages of 12 to 17 will access Facebook on any screen. It’s been reported this year Facebook will lose two million users under the age of 24. Conversely, an additional 500,000 adults age 55+ are expected to sign up with the social network. As growth flattens and teens and young adults are fleeing the social network for other platforms, there is pressure for Facebook to find new ways to grow revenue.

As Facebook seeks new revenue opportunities, they have also recently experienced losses in key senior management positions at two of its high-profile acquisitions; Instagram and WhatsApp. In 2012 Facebook acquired Instagram, a mobile photo sharing app, for $1 billion. Two years later Facebook acquired WhatsApp, a messaging app used on phones for $19 billion. Initially, Facebook had provided autonomy with the two acquisitions, but with an emphasis on growing revenue, that has changed.

The founders of WhatsApp, Jan Koum and Brian Acton, left Facebook first

In a Forbes interview, Acton expressed regret at selling the app to Facebook and expressed displeasure with Facebook’s plan of targeting ads to users. Last March, in the aftermath of the Cambridge Analytica revelation, Acton, a long-time privacy advocate, initiated a #DeleteFacebook movement on Twitter.

In September 2018, Instagram’s two founders Mike Krieger and Kevin Systrom left Facebook.

It was widely thought Krieger and Systrom were clashing with Zuckerberg over Instagram’s future role at Facebook, as the social network looks for additional sources of revenue. Instagram has been a bright spot for Facebook. In June 2018 Instagram reported it had one billion monthly active users worldwide, a tenfold increase since February 2013. While Facebook is losing younger users, Instagram is expected to add 1.6 million users age 24 and younger in the U.S. this year. Instagram Stories, which copied Snapchat, now has 400 million daily users, doubling all of Snapchat. (A Facebook version of Stories has 300 million users and becoming more popular than their news feed). More importantly, Instagram is expected to produce $5.5 billion in ad revenue in the U.S., an increase of 70% from 2017.

There has also been some pushback from Facebook with advertisers

WPP’s GroupM, the world’s largest ad agency, is said to be looking at alternatives to Facebook in the wake of brand safety and a lack of transparency and responsiveness. Moreover, the digital duopoly of Alphabet and Facebook, which accounts for about 60% of U.S. digital ad spend, also raises anxieties on Madison Avenue, concerned the two companies have become too powerful and are looking at other digital sources to invest in.

Besides taking some time off, what is next for the two co-founders of Instagram?

One of their pet projects was the recently lunched IGTV, a standalone video app allowing content to run for up to one hour for popular or verified users. Facebook had delayed the roll out of IGTV since it was a potential competitor to their struggling Facebook Watch product. A standalone video product may be in the offering. Another area the co-founders were said to be developing was a standalone e-commerce app. In addition, there may have been other products they were thinking about to expand Instagram. In any event, whatever they develop, they will no longer be answerable to Facebook. Without Krieger and Systrom’s input, will Instagram’s extraordinary popularity among teens and young adults continue under the direction of Facebook? That may be the biggest change of all.

I also believe that it would bode well for Facebook to take a word of advice from their former Instagram colleague, Kevin Systrom. On a blog post, Kevin said that he wanted to take time off to explore their ideas, creativity and curiosity again. These are wise words for data-driven Facebook if they want to engage my teenagers.

Via: Bulldog Reporter, www.agilitypr.com

CRC Wins SimplyProtein™ and Ceramedx Skincare -- Announces Team Expansion and Recognition as Top PR Firm in NYC by Expertise.com

NEW YORK — Cindy Riccio Communications has been selected as AOR for SimplyProtein, a new protein bar acquired by Atkins Nutritionals, and Earth Science Natural’s skincare system Ceramedx. The new clients bolster the agency’s health and wellness practice, which earlier this year launched plant-based yogurt, The Coconut Collaborative, in the UK and US.  

NEW YORK — Cindy Riccio Communications has named three new leaders to its team. Dorothy McEntee has joined as senior director of health & wellness, bringing experience from JDS Therapeutics, Catalyst-Agency and Sudler & Hennessey Medicus Intercon among others. Rachel Newman joins as account supervisor and director of media from Fox Greenberg PR. Amira Clement was promoted to senior PR & influencer marketing manager after nearly two years at the agency. 
HOLMES REPORT 15 OCT 2018 // 2:58AM GMT

What I Wish Someone Told Me Before I Became CEO, By Cindy Riccio

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Cindy Riccio opened the doors to CRC after a longstanding range of experience developing and executing award-winning public relations and social media programs for leading Fortune 500 companies and agencies.  She is an avid news connoisseur with a passion for storytelling and is proud to have worked with some of the world’s most stellar brands. Since celebrating the agency’s first decade of business last year, Cindy has created a collaborative team of digital marketing strategists with influencer marketing and social media capabilities that have led the agency to be recognized as one of the top 20 PR firms in NYC from more than 2,000 firms basedon their expertise as ranked by Expertise.com and cited by the New York Observer as one of the top New York Specialty Agencies.

Thank you so much for doing this with us! What is your "backstory"? My backstory is one of a true marketing and communications generalist who has a love for words and ideas.  A graduate of New York University with a B.A. degree in journalism and communications and a special concentration in public relations, I’m a member of the Public Relations Society of America, Women in Communications, Advertising Women of New York, The Fashion Group International and Cosmetic Executive Women.

My leadership style is a true result of years of experience traveling up the ranks of global, mid-sized and boutique agencies coupled with corporate marketing departments of top consumer- packaged good companies. My first big agency job at Saatchi & Saatchi’s PR division, The Rowland Company, taught me the basic principles of communication and client service with Fortune 500 companies and that quality over quantity wins; what gets measured gets managed.

Shifting from a PR agency to leading public relations for L’Oreal and Hanesbrands, I grew my business acumen, brand management and relationship building skills through collaborating with top leaders and marketers. That experience along with my shift to opening my own PR agency, led to Hanes Hosiery being CRC’s first client…and ten years later, our most tenured client.

1. Can you share the funniest or most interesting story that happened to you since you began leading your company?  There are so many interesting things that happen in our business.  When we were approaching our ten-year anniversary, a technology company based in Taiwan was launching a beauty app in the US and we won the business amongst six other beauty agencies even though our expertise is more rooted in apparel and consumer lifestyle.  As a result of the first year, The Holmes Report named CRC as a finalist in 2017 for the North America Sabre Awards: Innovation and Insight in Communications and Marketing for Perfect Corp’s app launch in the U.S. for YouCam Makeup.

2. What do you think makes your company stand out? Our diversity of backgrounds and areas of specialty. There aren’t many shops that have a strong PR discipline with creative digital marketing strategy and influencer marketing, all under one roof.  CRC provides data analytics, creative content, social strategy and SEO/SEM with teams who collaborate and understand how all the pieces fit together.  Can you share a story?  On any given day, we move from media buying tactics for digital and social media boosting to syncing up Google adwords for search strategy to planning a press event with business and style reporters. 

3. Are you working on any new or exciting projects now? We’re launching a new protein bar in the US called SimplyProtein owned by Atkins Nutritionals and a new plant-based therapeutic skincare brand, Ceramedx, as well as a plant-based dairy-free yogurt, The Coconut Collaborative. Health and wellness are our sweet spot right now.  On a more stylish side, we’re ramping up for a very busy fall season. We just released the fall DKNY intimate’s ad campaign featuring Emily Ratojowski and we’re planning an in-store event at Bloomingdale’s for Echo’s 95th anniversary

4. What advice would you give to other CEOs or founders to help their employees to thrive? My advice is to understand that we all have strengths and passion points.  Once you’ve identified what each is for your employees, give them the ball and let them run with it.  Let them see the fruits of their labor; both good and bad.  Accountability is key.  And, always have their back.

5. None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is   there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? There are so many people I am grateful for. My parent’s wisdom is at the core of my leadership values.  First and foremost, my mother raised me to be independent and confident. She encouraged me to take risks and to trust my insights and abilities. I’ve also surrounded myself with smart, talented people throughout my career who have served as great mentors along the way such as Marina Maher of Marina Maher Communications, Lisa Travatello of Weber Shandwick, Current and Burson-Marsteller, Brian Maloney of Maloney & Fox, Bill Koenigsberg of Horizon Media and Ken Jacobs of Jacobs Consulting.

6. Can you share a story about that?  I could command a room full of adults to listen to my stories from the time I was six years-old.  Storytelling was always my passion and my Mother encouraged it.

7. How have you used your success to bring goodness to the world? This past spring, we partnered with Project Sunshine for their 15th annual gala to raised $1 million. Project Sunshine works hard to raise awareness for the emotional needs of children facing medical challenges and their often-forgotten caregivers. The organization recruits and trains volunteers – community members, college students, corporations, and youth – to deliver creative, recreational, and educational programs. During Project Sunshine week, CRC added a dose of sunshine and vetted two mid-tier influencers to deliver curated baskets and arts and crafts to sick children. Ensuring childhood remains a place of wonder, we gave parents a break with a special visit to Weill Cornell Hospital and Rusk Rehabilitation Center.

In 2017, CRC partnered with CARE to increase their fundraising and awareness in the NY metropolitan market resulting in an op-ed in The NY Daily News by their new COO on World Refugee Day and an appearance at The Today Show windows with Hoda Kotb. CARE works around the globe to save lives, defeat poverty and achieve social justice. Women and children are the center of the organization as they cannot overcome poverty. In the days leading up to International Women’s Day, we asked people to join us along with Honorary Chair Sheryl Sandberg, to “Walk in her Shoes” by taking 10,000 steps each day for one week as solidarity with the journey taken each day by women and girls around the world, who walk up to four miles for basic needs like food and clean water for their families.  CRC encouraged people passing by to write #WhyICARE on an interactive board near Times Square about ending global poverty, spreading awareness of CARE’s work to help end global poverty.  Refinery 29, CBS-TV and WPIX-TV calendars posted the event and the campaign generated more $40,000 with over 6,000 people interacting with board generating 47 million social media impressions to create a voice in the metropolitan area.  

o  In 2010, I led a team of executives at the largest independently owned media agency, Horizon Media, to fundraise $200,000 to contribute to CityHarvest for the agency’s 20th anniversary. 

8. What are your "5 Things I Wish Someone Told Me Before I Became CEO" and why. (Please share a story or example for each.) 1. If you’re the smartest person in the room, you have a problem.  Every person on my team knows more than I do about their area of specialty. 2. You get what you give. CRC provides personal development training which ultimately gives each person the ability to be their personal best.  3. Dialogue is and will always be the best form of communication.  Conflict comes with the territory.  You have to be engaged with eye-to-eye and one-on-one conversation. 4. If you don’t love what you do, don’t do it.  Our most successful and longest lasting clients exist because we are passionate about their business.  We understand their challenges and get in the trenches to help them out. 5. You have to be in control of your time and you can’t unless you say no.

9. You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? It would be a movement that teaches the importance of living in the moment and the power of being present.  Our modern world of technology and social media means that no one is ever really paying full attention because we’re all trying to keep up with what key influencers are saying and posting on Instagram, snapchat, Twitter and Youtube.  #pause is my movement to engage people to breath, think, stretch, imagine, recalibrate and pause to reflect on what’s important to them at this moment.  Whether it be family, career, a cause they are passionate about, a wrong that needs to be righted or a personal goal, #pause reminds all of us to take stock of one’s self without interruption. You never know what your idea can trigger.  

10. Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote"? There are a couple of life lesson quotes that are my favorite: “Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving.” Albert Einstein and “My point is, life is about balance. The good and the bad. The highs and the lows. The pina and the colada.” ― Ellen DeGeneres.

11. Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life? I’m a Libra so it’s all about balance. Always.

12. Some of the biggest names in Business, VC funding, Sports, and Entertainment read this column. Is there a person in the world, or in the US with whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? Tyler Haney of Outdoor Voices because she’s young and innovative and encouraging recreational activity with functional fabrics that get people to enjoy the great outdoors. Arianna Huffington of the Huffington Post because she is a visionary and pioneered online news and is still an inspirational leader.

 

Cristina Tangredi's CRC Intern Experience

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Hello. I am Cristina Tangredi, CRC’s PR assistant, and I recently graduated from Fairfield University with a degree in professional writing and public relations. Being part of a team that not only cares so much about their clients, but also values hard work, has given me the opportunity to dive into a variety of different tasks that always keep me on my toes. From writing pitches to editors, attending client meetings, every day is new and exciting in my PR and Digital Marketing role.

During my first month at CRC, I have learned the ins and outs of public relations by being given the opportunity to share my thoughts and voice with the CRC team and their clients. I have been a part of onboarding new clients, developing social media content calendars, creating press materials, and attending deskside appointments with some of my favorite fashion magazines! From fashion clients to working with nonprofits, I love the variety of clients CRC works with and I am challenged to think outside the box each and every day. One day I will be writing pitches to editors for our client DKNY, and the next day I would create placement clippings for our client bluWinx. The variety of clients that we work with has provided me with a wide-range of tools and skillsets. One of my favorite moments at CRC is when I get the chance to attend onboarding meetings, and CRC presents new and potential clients with PR and digital media proposals and strategies. I always learn so much watching these presentations, and the hard work pays off when we win a new client such as our newest plant-based therapeutic skincare brand Ceramedx.

I set a goal for myself that after college I wanted to begin career that allowed me to participate in more than just going through the motions each and every day. CRC helped make that goal a reality. I am grateful to be part of a team that not only makes me feel welcome, but demonstrates the multiple aspects of PR, such as SEO, content curation and storytelling techniques to secure press placements through their hard work, extensive knowledge, and passion for what they do. Thank you for a great first month, CRC! 

 

Sincerely,

Cristina Tangredi 

 

SOPHIA TALLA'S CRC INTERN EXPERIENCE

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Hi! I’m Sophia Talla, CRC’s Summer Intern. I am originally from Paris and am going into the third year of a communications and editorial writing Bachelor focusing on the fashion and beauty industry in Southampton, England.

I have been interning at CRC for a month now and I have already learned so much about the PR & Digital Marketing industry. I carry out tasks such as daily media monitoring, pitching editors, clipping placements, helping with event planning as well as overall media relations which has enabled me to substantially grow professionally. I am encouraged to be creative while drafting posts for CRC’s social media handles, and I love seeing the influencers we work with mentioning our clients’ products and services.

I have also been in direct contact with clients at meetings and editors at press events and desk sides which has taught me how to interact with both. For example, I assisted and helped organize a press event for one of our clients, Joules. It was an amazing opportunity for me to learn how press events work and how it is set up. It was so rewarding to see editors from major publications such as Cosmopolitan and seeing them consider Joules’ collection for their fall stories.

The team is so helpful and always take the time to answer any question I may have. Watching them has taught me skills such as marketing, digital advertising and influencer marketing. They truly make me feel part of the team and always give direct feedback on the work I do which helps tremendously.

Given that I am from France and live in the UK, having the opportunity to learn about the industry from an American perspective has been an extremely enriching experience. I can honestly say that during my first month as an intern at CRC I have learned more than during my two years of studying.

Every day at CRC is different; I get to learn and do new things each day for very diverse types of clients. Coming from a fashion and beauty background, it has been so exciting to work with clients from other fields such as The Coconut Collaborative which helped me gain an understanding of the food industry. Moreover, working with Bluwinx has taught me about the accessory and wellness industry. I look forward to the rest of my internship and working with our new and current clients.

Thank you, CRC, for an amazing first month.

Sophia Talla

 

Emma Brammer's CRC Intern Experience

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Dear CRC,

I can’t thank you enough for allowing me this opportunity to work side by side with such an amazing team. After going through this internship and seeing how a team can operate and come out with huge successes, it makes me want to be in a similar environment for when I’m older. It was engaging and exciting work that helped me get to know a variety of clients such as DKNY, Hanes, Joules, and The Coconut Collaborative. It was always so rewarding for our team to watch these clients gain placements in some of my favorite magazines, such as Vogue, InStyle, and Oprah!

CRC gave me the opportunity to dive into hands-on tasks such as media monitoring for clients and tracking editors and reporters of well-known fashion and lifestyle magazines. Furthermore, I had the opportunity to draft pitches for editors, edit PR and digital marketing proposals, and sit in on client onboarding meetings as my colleagues presented influencer lists and strategies. My internship with CRC was a great way to network with editors and dive head-first into public relationships by maintaining strong relationships with both the clients and the media.

For the last five weeks, I was able to step out of my High school in Westchester, New York and experience what it’s like to work in the real world. The work done here at CRC has taught me how important it is to have a balance of both creativity and management in order to succeed in this business. I am so grateful for everything I have learned while interning here and I cannot wait to see what else you and the team does in the future.

 

Sincerely,

Emma Brammer

 

 

Kevin Tu's CRC Experience

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Dear CRC,

Thank you for letting me join the CRC team this semester. As a student at NYU Stern studying Marketing and Finance, we learn a lot in the classroom, and while what we learn is applicable in the real world, nothing beats firsthand experience. I’ve learned more about public relations and digital marketing this semester than I ever had in class.

Never did I think I’d be able to talk to clients so early on in my career and participate in guerilla marketing or be on TV. It was an amazing experience to be a part of CRC and I appreciate everything you, Amira, Zorina, and Hayley taught me when I first joined up until this point.

Hope you and the agency have a great summer!

Thank you again for everything this semester.

 

Best,

Kevin Tu

An Evolution of Influence Following the Era of Print

They say you always remember your first placement.  As a young public relations professional “ your first”  signified a major magazine placement you finally and painstakingly, after months (if not years) of pitching, secured for your client.  For me, that was  Vogue  which was the equivalent of winning gold for my client, Argyle Diamonds of Australia. The sheer influence and reach of  Vogue  set the standard for fashion, beauty and lifestyle media coverage– and it was (and remains) at the top of every client’s wish list. And while  Vogue ’s staying power continues, today we operate within an industry that is constantly evolving. With technology driving our lives, it is not out of the ordinary to hear that  Teen Vogue  gave up their imprint to go digital or that social influencers are securing front row seats at fashion shows and new product mega reveals. And for my staff, their firsts look quite different- their firsts exist in real time with social influencers who have millions of followers.  Super Influencer, Arielle Charnas of  Something Navy  has proven this paradigm with her recent Nordstrom deal for a standalone “Something Navy” collection set to launch this fall. The “Elevated basic” collection will feature a line of apparel, jewelry, and accessories priced between $49-$399. It doesn’t stop there, Co-founder of  Bag Snob , Tina Craig, started her career with a passion for handbags and became an influencer in her own right after creating a bag collection with DKNY and landing  WWD  articles.  While news of  Teen Vogue  print shuttering created a swirl of buzz and OMGs, this was a wickedly smart move for the publication to recalibrate its format, platform and voice to reach the digital dependent millennials.  For public relations professionals, technology challenges us each day to pivot our strategies to deliver a strong ROI and engagement for our clients as the evolution of influence has changed the core tenants of communication.  Another case in point is the inevitable demise of Time Inc. when America’s 95-year-old publishing empire was purchased by Meredith Corporation. The structural shift had a direct correlation with the rise in digitalmarketing and advertising. Where people had once received current events, beauty and style tips, and the latest news from emerging business brands, now they’re directing their attention to a superfluity of digital networks that induce content from profitable constituents.  This illustration, promoted by venture capitalists, depict the ineludible migration from print to digital networks and platforms.  As we counsel our clients on the influx and impact of emerging channels and platforms along with tutorials about the influencers and voices that are critical to a brand’s marketing success, we find an eagerness for them to examine their communications efforts in a bright new light that is all-inclusive and open minded to the reduction of print editorial.   For lifestyle product marketers, we are customizing and “characterizing” our messages to an audience of influencers that reaches far beyond editors, writers, producers and researchers.   WWD  has said that these influencers are the new sales associates and as we have seen, if they believe in your product, their endorsement (paid or otherwise) can be a powerful sales tool.  We now have exciting web personalities whose blogs, Vlogs, Instagram’s and Snaps deliver critical access to reach potential customers.  These influencers are self-proclaimed fans of fashion/beauty/food etc., stylists who have the ear of A-list celebrities, former journalists who have re-imagined their voice and are using new platforms and channels to share their opinions. While they continuously push out content; many are approached for magazine features, TV talk & reality shows and ad campaigns.  Hey, even my own team members are creating their own blogs as a channel to share their product passions and style imprints.  So, as we navigate the ever evolving digital deities, the greater challenge we face is #howtostandout with real time news, noise and queries to Alexa.  Amidst this shifting media landscape, I have found that two truths remain - you must have an interesting and authentic story to tell – and those influencers need content.  The best stories pique curiosity, take a stand, solve a problem, fulfill an unmet need, offer a new perspective, inspire awareness,   challenges conventional wisdom and most importantly, compel others to tell your story. Whether you are talking to a journalist, a producer, a blogger, a stylist, a celebrity or BFF to a star, you can #standout on the strength of a story that is customized to reach your customer of choice.  Stories can be told with smart copy, vibrant visuals, 140 characters, #great news, emotion, an invitation and good reason.     So as the evolution of influence evolves, we will continue to work with our clients to tell interesting stories to interesting people and along the way, continue to help our staff members celebrate their firsts.    

They say you always remember your first placement.  As a young public relations professional “your first” signified a major magazine placement you finally and painstakingly, after months (if not years) of pitching, secured for your client.  For me, that was Vogue which was the equivalent of winning gold for my client, Argyle Diamonds of Australia. The sheer influence and reach of Vogue set the standard for fashion, beauty and lifestyle media coverage– and it was (and remains) at the top of every client’s wish list. And while Vogue’s staying power continues, today we operate within an industry that is constantly evolving. With technology driving our lives, it is not out of the ordinary to hear that Teen Vogue gave up their imprint to go digital or that social influencers are securing front row seats at fashion shows and new product mega reveals. And for my staff, their firsts look quite different- their firsts exist in real time with social influencers who have millions of followers.

Super Influencer, Arielle Charnas of Something Navy has proven this paradigm with her recent Nordstrom deal for a standalone “Something Navy” collection set to launch this fall. The “Elevated basic” collection will feature a line of apparel, jewelry, and accessories priced between $49-$399. It doesn’t stop there, Co-founder of Bag Snob, Tina Craig, started her career with a passion for handbags and became an influencer in her own right after creating a bag collection with DKNY and landing WWD articles.

While news of Teen Vogue print shuttering created a swirl of buzz and OMGs, this was a wickedly smart move for the publication to recalibrate its format, platform and voice to reach the digital dependent millennials.  For public relations professionals, technology challenges us each day to pivot our strategies to deliver a strong ROI and engagement for our clients as the evolution of influence has changed the core tenants of communication.

Another case in point is the inevitable demise of Time Inc. when America’s 95-year-old publishing empire was purchased by Meredith Corporation. The structural shift had a direct correlation with the rise in digitalmarketing and advertising. Where people had once received current events, beauty and style tips, and the latest news from emerging business brands, now they’re directing their attention to a superfluity of digital networks that induce content from profitable constituents.  This illustration, promoted by venture capitalists, depict the ineludible migration from print to digital networks and platforms.

As we counsel our clients on the influx and impact of emerging channels and platforms along with tutorials about the influencers and voices that are critical to a brand’s marketing success, we find an eagerness for them to examine their communications efforts in a bright new light that is all-inclusive and open minded to the reduction of print editorial. 

For lifestyle product marketers, we are customizing and “characterizing” our messages to an audience of influencers that reaches far beyond editors, writers, producers and researchers.  WWD has said that these influencers are the new sales associates and as we have seen, if they believe in your product, their endorsement (paid or otherwise) can be a powerful sales tool.  We now have exciting web personalities whose blogs, Vlogs, Instagram’s and Snaps deliver critical access to reach potential customers.  These influencers are self-proclaimed fans of fashion/beauty/food etc., stylists who have the ear of A-list celebrities, former journalists who have re-imagined their voice and are using new platforms and channels to share their opinions. While they continuously push out content; many are approached for magazine features, TV talk & reality shows and ad campaigns.  Hey, even my own team members are creating their own blogs as a channel to share their product passions and style imprints.  So, as we navigate the ever evolving digital deities, the greater challenge we face is #howtostandout with real time news, noise and queries to Alexa.

Amidst this shifting media landscape, I have found that two truths remain - you must have an interesting and authentic story to tell – and those influencers need content.  The best stories pique curiosity, take a stand, solve a problem, fulfill an unmet need, offer a new perspective, inspire awareness, 

challenges conventional wisdom and most importantly, compel others to tell your story. Whether you are talking to a journalist, a producer, a blogger, a stylist, a celebrity or BFF to a star, you can #standout on the strength of a story that is customized to reach your customer of choice.  Stories can be told with smart copy, vibrant visuals, 140 characters, #great news, emotion, an invitation and good reason.   

So as the evolution of influence evolves, we will continue to work with our clients to tell interesting stories to interesting people and along the way, continue to help our staff members celebrate their firsts. 

 

By Cindy Riccio, President, CRC

Meet Kevin Tu

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Hi! I’m CRC’s Spring 2018 Intern, and my name is Kevin Tu. I’m currently an undergraduate student at New York University’s Stern School of Business and am majoring in marketing.

CRC has proven to be an amazing place to get hands-on experience. Day one, in the office, you’re tasked with duties that contribute to or directly affect a client. PR is a special branch of marketing. It necessitates a working knowledge of what your clients are doing compared to which publications want to hear from them in order to increase exposure and drive traffic towards available retailers as well as their e-commerce businesses. In this way, more and more people can hear and buy their product. We’re the ones who personally reach out on our client’s behalf.

As my first undergraduate internship, I’ve learned a lot here. Our clients range from fashion to health-conscious food products. I’ve learned how to talk to clients and address their needs directly, as well as assisting in implementing various business development strategies to develop a brand.

The team is always there to help. Don’t be afraid to ask for it! I came in with a general knowledge of marketing and PR, but the core team, Cindy, Amira, Hayley, and Zorina, really helped me contextualize it to make a tangible effect in the real world. In the weeks I’ve been here, I learned so much about what digital marketing and PR is all about.

Finally, CRC is an agency that hasn’t shied away from moving with the times. We are as much a PR firm as a digital marketing one. I’ve learned how to develop social media strategies, content curation and calendars to maintain a productive, contributable online presence for our clients. It’s very much a place that gives its interns real opportunities to interact with clients and support their storytelling optimization.

I’ve sat in on and even talked to clients during conference calls, and have drafted pitches for media publications, TV shows such as The Doctors and The Today Show, as well as trade announcements to key industry gatekeepers. CRC even gives interns valuable teambuilding experiences.

For example, I went with the team for a guerilla marketing campaign where we took the New York City streets by storm inn recognition of American Heart Month.  On Valentine’s Day, we spread the #cocolove with free samples of chocolate ganache pots courtesy of our client, the Coconut Collaborative, the dairy-free, vegan-friendly coconut-based yogurt company! It was exciting to stand behind the Good Morning America show to spread Coconut Collaborative’s story far and wide as they launched their plant-based yogurt and dessert pots in the US from the UK.  By that event alone, we handed out over 5,000 samples all across NYC during the busy commuter hours and throughout the day during New York Fashion Week. It was an innovative marketing execution that highlighted just how much a difference we make at this agency while also managing to have lots of fun!

So far, it’s been a valuable experience. I highly recommend coming here to meet and work with the team! CRC is definitely a very encouraging environment to anyone who’s ready to learn and I look forward to working more with CRC as this semester continues!

CRC In The Huffington Post: Women in Business

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For more than ten years, CRC has used the magic of storytelling to spread the word and spark conversations. Leveraging the latest communications technology and digital tools to help broadcast brand stories to the consumer. With clients including a host of home goods, apparel/accessories, beauty and food/beverage companies CRC offers marketers a collaborative culture and viable alternative to an in-house communications department.

In a Women in Business Q&A, CRC President and founder Cindy Riccio sits down with The Huffington Post to discuss the changing climate of the digital age, her advice for women in the industry, life experience, role models, and what she hopes to accomplish in the next year with CRC.

Read more here

 

CRC on The Daily Front Row

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After a fruitful career of leading public relations for global to mid-size public relations agencies and Fortune 500 agencies, Cindy Riccio broke out on her own to found CRC a decade ago. Since then she has built her agency into a digitally savvy, award-winning boutique communications agency representing clients across categories like food, beauty, fragrance, travel, fitness, tech, and fashion. In this feature story, Cindy chats with The Daily Front Row on how she founded CRC, her biggest PR coups, and discusses how brands will be communicating beyond social media and common digital tactics, in the future.

Read the full article here. 

CRC Featured on PR Couture

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Consumer lifestyle marketing expert, Cindy Riccio opened the doors to Cindy Riccio Communications (CRC) ten years ago after years developing and executing award-winning public relations programs for leading Fortune 500 companies and agencies.

The C3 Formula: Create. Connect. Communicate has caught the attention of clients like Hanes, Kenneth Cole and Wonderbra.

An avid news connoisseur with a passion for storytelling, we were lucky enough to learn more about Cindy’s background, vision and agency focus.

Read the full article here.

Celebrating the TENacity of Owning a Small PR Agency

Celebrating the TENacity of Owning a Small PR Agency

Cindy, our President and Founder, shares her ten top observations about growing and thriving in a competitive and ever-evolving marketplace, competing with the big agencies and how a boutique lifestyle shop continues to keep and attract smart talent and great clients. As featured in Agility PR Solutions.