Laurie Zakreski of Zak Communications
Meet Laurie Zakreski, founder and President of Zak Communications, a modern PR agency responsible for handling Canadian press and and public relations strategy for some of the world's largest brands including Marc Jacobs Beauty, Nest Fragrances, and Ole Henrikson.
Laurie founded Zak Communications 15 years ago, after working as Tommy Hilfiger's Director of Marketing for 5 years. She obtained her Bachelor of Arts in Political Science with a minor in Art History from the University of Saskatchewan and moved to Montreal at only 20 years old. She worked as a fashion model in Toronto and Montreal before falling in love with the fashion industry and taking a job at Buffalo Jeans. Laurie navigated her way through the industry and managed to build an empire for herself through hard work and hands-on experience, managing creative teams and overseeing marketing strategies.
As the sole owner of Zak Communications, Laurie is responsible for maintaining client relationships, human resources, and business development. She harnesses the power of media and press to elevate some of the biggest brands across multiple industries. Laurie gets by with the help of daily meditation and her meticulously curated, high energy team to which she offers her endless appreciation.
Founded in 2002, Zak Communications has been around to witness the shift in media from print to digital and has been an early adopter of digital press. Because of this, Laurie has been able to be ahead of the game when it comes to areas that new agencies are only starting to figure out such as Influencer Marketing and Strategy. Zak Communications was one of the first firms to start working with bloggers and later "influencers" and Instagrammers. She notes that many companies and agencies have a hard time seeing past numbers when it comes to working with influencers and that she and her team have learned to fine tune their eye when planning influencer strategies and to ensure actual relationships are fostered.
Because Zak Communications works behind the scenes on major product launches, much of Laurie's work must be kept under wraps. I asked Laurie for some insider details on what she and her team have been working on, and she was able to share that Zak Communications will be a part of the upcoming Autumnal launch of Rihanna's Fenty Beauty, as well as the Canadian development of WeWork, an elevated and adapted modern co-working space available worldwide.
Laurie's advice to aspiring PR moguls is to intern as much as you can afford to. She notes that the PR industry is one best learned through experience and watching. Laurie finds PR to be the perfect balance of strategy and creativity that keeps her on her feet. She gets to combine her love of business with her buzzing creative mind. She makes use of her experience in advertising and marketing to come up with ideas that will work with PR and communications' more organic style of creating buzz through media. She looks forward having a long-lasting career and continuing to create help businesses achieve success with Zak Communications.