You may not know it, but this FACES of Louisville woman is the reason you are hearing about many businesses around town. It is her business to promote your business. In 2009, Biz Ethridge started Papillion Collective, a full-service public relations firm. Biz and StyleBlueprint follow the same mantra: we only work with “the Best of the Best.”
What exactly do you do working in the PR business? I’m sure you wear many hats and this is not a typical 9-5 p.m. job.
No, not at all 9-5. I am available 24/7 for my clients. All of our clients are unique and require different services, approaches, plans, etc. If I had to sum it up, I’d say we do a lot of strategic marketing including media relations, advertising campaigns, direct to consumer marketing, relationship marketing, website and SEO work, graphic design, social media programs and platform management, and we also act as a business consultant.
What is the significance of the name Papillion (French for butterfly) for you?
In addition to a slight obsession with French language and culture, the concept of a metamorphosis in regards to marketing and helping to grow businesses combined with the social association of butterflies just seemed like a good fit for my team.
Working in PR means working all the time. Do you ever get a day off?
I’m working on that, I know it’s important, but I’m always thinking of clients and work on some level because it’s such a huge part of my life. I absolutely love what I do, so it’s not always a bad thing.
What is the biggest life lesson you have ever learned?
Life’s not fair. I think my Dad gently mentioned this about 780 times before it sunk in.
Who is your mentor?
My mom, hands down.
What is the best advice you have received in business?
Sometimes you have to take a step back and think about the big picture rather than react too quickly to a situation, gaining clarity on what works for my business and me rather than what is expected is an ongoing process.
If you did not work in the public relations business, what would you secretly love to do?
This is hilarious and I cannot believe I’m going to say it, but I cannot imagine being in any other business than exactly what I’m doing now. All of the different chapters of my life leading up to this point have played so perfectly into having some insight into different industries. So my diverse background, combined with the people I’ve met and relationships I’ve made have been so amazing. I’m happy right here. If I had to choose something else, though, I’d be a professional surfer.
I know that you have a workout clothes day at the office. Tell me about that and other things you do to differentiate your business for your employees.
I wanted to create the type of work environment that would make me want to come to work, and it seems to resonate with our team. Our office is a happy place, stories and jokes are welcome, and we are constantly collaborating to find ways to elevate our work for our clients (borrowing ideas from different industries, coming up with unconventional solutions, etc.). I will say, being able to run or workout in the middle of the day on certain days keeps our energy and creativity up, and why not? (We would welcome an office sponsorship from LuluLemon anytime.)
What is something people would be surprised to know about you?
That I got a varsity letter in French Scrabble in high school. Dork or awesome? You decide.
What is your favorite place to go eat?
I LOVE all of the incredible places in Louisville – we have the absolute best selection of local restaurants. With that said I couldn’t pick one over another, so I’m going with where I want to be right now, Pastis in New York. It reminds me of Paris, but I have so many happy memories of going there with good friends and even by myself sometimes.
Where do you like to shop?
In Louisville, I love Clodhoppers, Cargo, Rodes and just discovered The Pink Door Boutique. I wouldn’t pass up a stop in Barney’s Co-op or Club Monaco while traveling.
What is a treat or a luxury you do for yourself?
I get massages at Elements in Westport Village every month – this keeps me sane. And I love going to Joseph’s for a spa day when I can squeeze it in.
What is your weakness?
French fries, or pretty much any unsuspecting bag of potato chips. If they’re around, they’re mine.
What is your number one pet peeve?
People who are late. I may be a little OCD on being early/on time, but my patience for the opposite is very limited.
What is your favorite thing to do in Louisville?
Right now my favorite thing is running in the park. The weather is perfect and it’s almost like a meditation session.
What are you reading right now?
I regularly read local and regional newspapers, magazines and several blogs.
Books? Trying to finish Positioning, which is about classic branding and marketing and a Chelsea Handler book (which reminds me there are crazier people in the world).
What are three of your “favorite” things right now?
1. My brother’s baby (my brand new niece), Ayden. She is a doll and I can’t wait to watch her grow up.
2. Being around people I love.
3. Pumpkin seeds.
And thanks to Adele Reding for taking these beautiful photographs.
To learn more about Biz’s biz, visit her website: www.papilloncollective.com
To learn more about Adele Reding and see more of her portfolio, visit her site at http://adeleredingphotography.com.