Cat Park is the Director of Ten Letter PR an independent Television, Radio and Online Promotion company.
After 8 years of running Channel AKA (formerly Channel U) on Sky Channel 395, Cat made a career change and started Ten Letter in 2012. Her clients include some of the biggest names in music and film such as Chip, Boy Better Know, Krept and Konan, Omarion, Jhene Aiko, Adam Deacon, Paigey Cakey and Shystie (just to name a few).
What do general tasks in your career as a PR Manager consist of on a daily basis?
It’s really strange when I am referred to as a PR Manager to be honest, I don’t see myself as a PR or a plugger, even though I am lol. Tasks vary daily and there’s lots of juggling to be done but it makes it exciting. I can be doing anything from running press days, organising my team and ensuring they each have their tasks for the week, listening to new campaigns, scheduling campaigns, talking to DJ’s, heads of music, attending meetings, tweeting about our acts, writing press releases, confirming interviews for our artists or answering interview questions like I am right now! It’s great fun. You never have the same day twice.
Why did you decide to become involved in PR?
I actually fell in to it. Having ran Channel U / AKA for eight years and managed 360 Record label, I was very much involved in music and the ‘Urban’ music scene. However, the channel was sold in 2012 and I was faced with my career being whipped away from under me. As a single mum, it was a scary time but having built some wonderful relationships over the years, I spoke to my friends, and affiliates and they all said‘start your own business Cat, you know everyone!’To be honest, I didn’t really know what I was going to do or the route I should take. All I knew is that my passion and my love was with the urban music, especially the underground acts. For years I had helped to provide a platform for acts that weren’t getting a lot of support from mainstream channels and it was thrilling to be part of the journey as I watched artists such as N Dubz, Wretch 32, Tinie Tempah, Tinchy Stryder and Chip soar to success. I realised it was THATpart that I loved and wanted to continue to be part of. I started telling friends and associates my plans and then Krept & Konan’s manager passed me on one of their videos and said “we need this on TV, how much do you want”and that was the start of Ten Letter!
When did you make a start on your career?
Following my A-Levels, I went into retail for a number of years. I am originally from Carlisle which is 300 miles away from London and I worked in H&M and then moved to Topshop where I got into management. I then decided to move to London and I opened Miss Selfridge in Selfridges Oxford St as part of the management team and also did some modelling on the side. It was at that point that I met the owner of Channel U and he offered me a job which I took and started my career in music at the age of 22.
How did you set up?
Dedication, determination, passion and a lot of relationships are the things you need. I had to speak to accountants and you have to work out exactly what you want your company to do, the name, the logo, how you wish to present yourself and then you need to find people that want to work with you! For me personally, a lot of it was word of mouth to begin with.
What have you learnt during your experience?
You have to be quite thick skinned and you have to be prepared for lots of knock backs. Always have plans B, C, D, E and F ready as you never know what will happen in any situation. I have also learnt it is important to say no. You can’t take on every campaign that you are asked to work on and you can’t spread yourself too thinly. Quality over quantity as they say!
What advice can you offer to aspiring PR Managers?
Don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty. You have to work hard and put in a lot of ground work first in order to build and keep relationships alive. It is the relationships that you build that are key to how you will move forward.
And last, but most importantly build an epic team around you that share your vision and passion. That’s what makes us Ten Letter, it’s about the team, the artists, the platforms and all of the cogs working together.