Noir & Company was formed out of a shared passion for helping good people get attention for their businesses and with a shared love of the Oxford Comma. Before I met Danielle in the summer of 2018, I never would have thought I’d reenter the world of marketing and public relations. I certainly would not have imagined I’d be part of an independent agency here in Cody, Wyoming. Danielle is a special person though and as I learned about the technology based marketing skills she has, I knew I had to introduce her to Cody businesses. I just didn’t know that she’d convince me to join her for the ride.
I first entered the world of marketing and public relations back in 1997 after graduating from college with a Public Communications degree and I landed in the very competitive high tech video game industry. I ended up working in international public relations for most of my career working for author Tom Clancy and for companies like Electronic Arts, Sony, and 2K. If you’re a gamer, the first game I worked on was the original Rainbow Six and other games included Ghost Recon, Anarchy Online, EverQuest 2, Spore, BioShock 2, Borderlands, and several sports titles at 2K.
After being laid off when my first company was purchased by Ubisoft, I moved to Norway for three years and worked internationally for a small gaming company there and got laid off again. When I came back to the United States, I was working for Sony and then another smaller company in San Diego. After my 3rd time getting laid off, I was recruited by Electronic Arts and had a fabulous time working for legendary game designer Will Wright. He was truly the nicest and most humble developer that I ever worked for and it was with regret that I moved on to another company, 2K to finally take the mantle as the PR Director for the company.
After little more than a year in that position, I got laid off again. This was in 2009 when everyone was getting laid off but it still stung to be let go again during a company’s financial hardship.
I laugh when I hear people talk about starting their own business and the fear that they will no longer have “job security”. I was working in an industry that brings in more money than Hollywood and I was laid off 4 times. I was out of work for a year after being laid off in 2009 and it made me think differently about my career path. I realized the only job security I could have was if I was more in control of my fate.
So, I started doing PR consulting and it just wasn’t consistent enough to keep me going. On a whim, I started researching other jobs and in another blog post I can tell you how I ended up going back to school to become a massage therapist. But the point of mentioning that in this post is to show that we don’t have to keep doing what we think we’re “supposed” to do if it isn’t working. Don’t be afraid to approach your career differently or to consider adding a second career, especially if both allow for flexible timing.
I shifted to massage as my focus over the past 7 years and kept doing PR when the right opportunities came up. Being in a health focused industry has also helped me maintain my own better sense of health and it is very rewarding to help people with pain. I have never been happier than I have been with this balance of two seemingly unrelated careers.
As Danielle and I got to know each other and she learned more about my public relations background, we realized we shared a frustration with working for large corporations. As we kept talking, we realized that we both thrive when working independently and that our skill sets were perfectly complimentary. We also share a passion for doing the right thing by both the customer and the company, that ethical decisions are easy. When you do the right thing, the customers stay with you.
And then, we realized that together, we could offer businesses the help that so many need today. We want to empower our clients to understand marketing and public relations as much as we can so they can make these choices on their own. We are not driven by making money; we are driven by being of service and we are excited to officially launch our company today.
We also feel that its important to place commas where they belong. If you invite the clowns, Bob, and Margaret to a party it’s very different than inviting the clowns, Bob and Margaret to a party. That’s just how we roll.