Happy 7th Anniversary, Obsidian Public Relations!

Today marks a milestone for Obsidian Public Relations—our seventh anniversary! 2012 was a whirlwind year for our firm, with an expansion into another market, new clients and our first full year in our new office in South Main. Let’s recap:

We moved into our digs at 493 S. Main in late 2011, and by this time last year, we were all settled in and loving the South Main life! For a cup of coffee or a bite of lunch, we just walk right next door toBluff City Coffee or down the street and across the trolley tracks to Arcade. We can just about see the National Civil Rights Museum from our front window. We’re walking distance to great spots like Frank’s Deli, South of Beale, Muse and Hoot + Louise. We love it here, and we’d love you to come visit us sometime!

We also kicked off serving our very first pro-bono clients from our PR 180° Project initiative—On Our Own for the first half of the year and Memphis Roller Derby in the second half. Our account reps had an amazing time getting to know these organizations and helping them meet their communications needs.

Early in 2012, we announced plans to expand the Obsidian PR name into another market—Dallas, Texas! Our managing director, Crissy Lintner, left the Bluff City and headed west with her family to put down roots in Dallas. She spent 2012 building our Dallas presence, networking and gaining clients, like the Humane Society of North Texas,TopMD Skin Care, Coquerel Family Wine Estates and Cockerell Dermatopathology. She was joined in the summer by another of our Memphis folks, Kerri Guyton, whose family moved to Tyler. Kerri expanded the Obsidian reach outside of Dallas into Smith County, where she completed some great communications projects for various clients, like the Renovation Conference and Holt Creative.

Here in Memphis, we landed some terrific new clients, as well. They included The Cupboard, Kroger’s Delta Division, Calvary Episcopal Church, Advanced Dermatologyand Next Day Access.

Another big event from the past year was the completion and announcement of our 2012social media survey. As in 2011, we partnered with Research Dynamics Inc. to conduct a quantitative survey on Mid-Southerners’ use of social media platforms. The findings showed a 15 percent increase in social media usage among Shelby County residents from last year.

We continued our tradition of monthly professional development initiatives, with each account rep organizing a different month’s training, including topics such as AP style, analysis of local television programming changes and the overhaul of our local media list. But don’t worry—we balanced all that and our client workloads with some fun team outings, like when we took a cooking class at the Church Health Center, chowed down at a Court Square Food Truck Rodeo and got our local shopping on at MemShop. We even let our four-legged friends get in on the fun when we invited our pets to the office for Take Your Dog to Work Day benefiting the Humane Society of Memphis & Shelby Countyin June!

Before we knew it, it was time again to open up nominations and voting for our 2013 PR 180° Project competition in Memphis. With more than 6,200 Facebook votes for 25 different local nonprofit organizations, The Blues Foundation and the Fire Museum of Memphis emerged as our winners, and they will each receive six months of pro-bono PR services in 2013.

All of us at Obsidian PR are thankful for a wonderful 2012 and look forward to many more years of meeting our clients’ communications needs and enjoying everything that Memphis and Dallas has to offer!