October 25, 2021
(ARLINGTON, Texas) —Chuck Leblo is the founder of the Local PR Firm, a public relations company that helps small businesses market themselves and project a positive image in the community.
The Local PR Firm encourages its clients to work with nonprofit organizations and charities pairing each with a local charity.
Leblo has worked in public relations for almost 20 years and founded his business in 2006. He talked to The Click about the origin of his company and how it works.
This conversation has been edited for length and clarity.
The Click: What made you want to start the Local PR firm?
Leblo: I realized there was a significant underrepresented community in public relations, which were the small businesses. They could not afford the high-end PR firms. At the Local PR Firm, we think of PR as popularity and reputation. We help small businesses with their popularity.
The Click: How does your company support your clients? Do you hold events or markets for them?
Leblo: We do both; it depends on the client and the engagement; the majority of the stuff that we do is behind-the-scenes as far as managing their reputation. We manage their reputation, and we train with them to respond to critical reviews or teach them to respond to good reviews. So that’s their reputation, and we help them become popular by getting them involved in the community.
The Click: How do you make sure your client’s business is newsworthy?
Leblo: One of the things that all of our clients have to do is we partner them with a nonprofit every six months, that they have to do a given event because now you’ve got something that’s newsworthy, something that’s got PR value. So we knew that, so we’d set up that event and help them through that on a day-to-day basis. We give them the tools and the assistance to do videos. We’re 100% video-driven here. We have an online video tool to go to their site that we create for them, pull up a digital recorder, record as many videos as they want.
The Click: Do you ever do damage control for your clients?
Leblo: Yes, that’s under reputation management. If you have some sort of, major blow-up, or “oh, shit” moment, then yeah, we get in there and can help clean that up as well. I represent small organizations, small mom-and-pop businesses that may get in trouble because they pissed off the wrong person. We get that cleaned up for them.
The Click: What is your relationship with journalists when managing clients?
Leblo: I’ve got a database of almost every journalist in the Texas area. I don’t use it. The reason is that there’s enough news out there; there are enough stories out there that they don’t need that. We talk to journalists to make sure they will not put out a negative slam piece.