The Belle Of PR
Kate Finely started Belle Communications two years ago (2013), as a PR company that empowers meaningful work and thriving relationships by bringing the right story to the right audience at the right time through strategic public relations and social media.
Since founding Belle, it’s grown from just Finley to a team of six with offices in four states. “I started Belle because I wanted to find a way to channel my expertise and passion into the same medium,” she explains.
As Finley looks back, she recalls how typical her start in PR was with long hours and a heavy workload. PR is consistently listed as one of the most stressful jobs, and she knew that her hours of getting up at 5AM and staying well past 7PM at the office weren’t for her. “If this is PR,” she recalls thinking, “then I’m not gonna do it.”
So she took a sabbatical and took a job with a boss who asked her to work just 30 hours a week. In her spare time, she started blogging and everyday Finley would write on KateUpdates.com about inspiration and being healthy.
During this time, she also came to realize how much she still loved PR as an industry, but not its overworked environment. She wanted to get back into the field, and started consulting. She says making that decision was terrifying, “but risk is definitely a part of everyday – as an entrepreneur.”
Belle Communications grew out of this step back into PR. And with the core idea of empowering meaningful work and thriving relationships, Finley grew Belle into a company that values its partners and team.
Finley and her team have spent the past year(s) working with brands like Freedom a la Cart, Sbarro, and Kahiki Foods, along with other national brands within the food and restaurant space. “Locally we’ve had the opportunity to partner on some innovative client projects,” she shares. Projects like:
- launching Le Meridien’s The Joseph with Storyforge
- a national awareness campaign for Sbarro bringing attention to their innovative new free-standing concept and rebrand
- the second annual EatUp! Columbus event with Freedom a la Cart, which raised $106k
On a more personal note, Finley was also named one of PR News’ Top Women in PR for 2016. When she learned about the award, Finley expressed how honored she was. “It’s validation of what I’ve been doing for years,” she says.
With all the that Finley and Belle have accomplished this year, she says that 2016 is shaping up to be even better and bigger. The firm is shifting its focus to a 50/50 split of national and local partners – meaning more opportunities for Columbus-based projects. “2016, I’m very confident, is going to be our best year ever,” she says.
To learn more about Kate Finley and Belle Communications, visit them online at www.ThinkBelle.com and Twitter: @ThinkBelleCom.