An Interview with the Founder and MD of ThirdEye Media Clara Armand-Delille, About Building a PR Agency for Start Ups

ThirdEyeMedia is a digital PR agency providing strategic consultancy for startups and VC firms across Europe and the Americas. As a full-service agency, we offer customizable and holistic strategies for our client, with a focus on high-quality content and a data and results driven approach.

Clara Armand-Delille is the founder & MD of ThirdEyeMedia, a PR agency that helps startups and VCs scale their brand during crucial growth stages including fundraising and product and market expansion. With 10 years experience in Communications strategy in the digital sector across multiple markets, Clara is a multicultural PR professional with a track record of building startups’, founders’ and VCs’ public profiles through global communications campaigns, media announcements and strategic positioning.

Clara has extensive experience with the media across Europe, the US and Latin America. She has previously worked at Google, Accel Partners, iZettle, and collaborated with countless early stage startups. Clara holds an MA from the Institut d’Etudes Politique in Paris, and graduated Magna Cum Laude from Brown University
with a BA in International Relations.

Key Stats

Date Started: I started consulting in April 2015, and founded ThirdEyeMedia in January 2016.
Location: ThirdEyeMedia is located in Lisbon, Portugal. I took a bet on Lisbon when I moved here four years ago, and looking back today, it’s very exciting to be based in one of Europe’s hottest and fastest growing tech hubs.
Number of Employees: ThirdEyeMedia currently has 3 full time individuals including myself, and a lean network of boutique PR partners across Europe including Scandinavia, Germany, The Netherlands, and Spain. We do PR across Europe and the US for startups in all types of sectors, and venture capital firms investing in a broad range of stages and regions.

During the launch phase, did you maintain a full time job? (or even currently)

I launched ThirdEyeMedia in response to sustained existing demand. After close to a decade doing tech and venture capital PR across Europe based in London, I had a solid network of entrepreneurs, engineers, and PR professionals in my roster.

When I moved to Lisbon in late 2014, I was receiving a steady flow of industry related requests for PR advice, networking introductions, help or guidance related to press relations, communication strategies and new market launches. There was a demand, so after a few months to settle into my new city, I sent out my first proposal and acquired my very first client. I rapidly grew my client base and a few months later, I launched ThirdEyeMedia.

How did you acquire customers/subscribers/users?

We have been incredibly lucky, most of our clients have come from referrals of from my network as a result of inbound requests and recommendations. Myself and the team have all worked inHouse in different lines of business, before joining ThirdEyeMedia. We truly understand the needs and requirements of a startup. And as a PR agency, we aren’t interested in selling cookie-cutter solutions, we want to deliver bespoke PR strategies for each of our client. We believe that that’s where the value lies.

What software / platforms / tools have you utilized since launch? Which have worked / not worked?

We use Meltwater as a PR database tool and professional press clippings service, we migrated our website to WordPress after 2 years on WIX, and we have one or two social media analytics tools that we use to share back data and growth results with our clients.

How did you fund your company and how does your company make money/revenue?

I founded ThirdEyeMedia in response to an existing demand that I identified: multi-lingual cross-border PR across Europe. To my knowledge, there isn’t anyone else out there with a team of three that can cover a startup’s PR needs in 9 or 10 languages and markets. We can do that, and we can turn around these types of announcements within just a few weeks. We offer consultancy services, we sell our expertise, network, and creativity to our clients. As such, our sunk costs are very limited but the demand on results is high.

To date, what have been your biggest challenges as a company?

The challenge we face day in day out is meeting the needs of our clients in an incredibly fast-paced industry. Both tech and the media have a culture of immediacy. It’s our job as PR professionals and consultants to sometimes advise our clients to slow down and reflect on their strategy and tactics, or on the contrary, to accelerate a project to make sure we can ride a media trend, or push some news out on time for a key event or milestone.

One of the challenges we enjoy the most is helping startups and VC create a media footprint in unchartered territories. Whether it’s breaking into a new market, or cracking a press segment they have never received coverage in before, these can be some of the toughest results to crack, but also the most rewarding ones, both for our clients and for ThirdEyeMedia.

What have you done to overcome them?

We have startup blood in our DNA. We think creatively and resourcefully. We will always go the extra mile to make sure we deliver. Sometimes, we’ll pitch a story that we feel is getting little reaction from the media. If that happens, we will quickly adapt our pitch or press angle, based on the initial media feedback.

Other times, we’ll have to broaden the scope of publications we speak to in order to ensure we can secure coverage. One way or another, we think in a results oriented way and we do our best to deliver high-quality work within our promised deadlines.

If you had to do it all over again, would you?

YES, becoming an entrepreneur has been the best decision of my life. And every stepping stone to get here has been worth the hustle.

What would you do differently?

I would have started my own business earlier. In reality, I wouldn’t change a thing, and I’m incredibly happy where I am today, and grateful for each and every company I worked for, boss and colleague I learned from and work experience I built on top of in order to launch my own PR agency. That said, I thoroughly enjoy being an entrepreneur, and I am definitely encouraging people around me to take the leap of faith when I sense they might be receptive to the suggestion.

Any advice to give?

Take risks. The sheer fun and satisfaction of being your own boss is the biggest kept secret. Most of us don’t take the risk to leave a job or pursue a more meaningful career because we don’t have a clear idea of how to turn our skill-set into value. But in reality, the perceived risk of taking a leap of faith seems bigger than it really is. Whoever has the insight to understand what skills they can offer and the vision to build a business in response to gaps in the market, is in a great position to succeed.

Think of yourself as a brand. In a rapidly changing work environment, thinking of how employable you are is obsolete. What you need to be thinking about is your next idea, or your strategy on how to market yourself. Now more than ever, it’s essential to think of yourself as a micro-brand. You need to know your “self elevator pitch.” In other words, think about your 20 seconds description of ‘about my skills and why you should care’. And have a clear action plan of that.

Think laterally. Your career will not be straight line and your should prepare for that. Use your intuition, think about what you really enjoy and develop a revenue making side hustle before you need it. My side hustle is yoga teaching, I have been practicing yoga for 10 years, and teaching at Little Yoga Space in Lisbon for 3 years. Having a side hustle will ground you and give you the confidence to make better decisions in your main job. We are moving from an era of uniform, mono-skilled careers to one of multi-talent and multi-skilled careers.

Lastly, if anyone reading this wants to know more about ThirdEyeMedia … where do we send them?

Sure of course, you can contact our team from our following channels You can check out our work and contact us at www.thirdeyemedia.press our websiteYou can follow us at @ThirdEyeMedia_ on Twitter You can also follow our work at @thirdeyemedia_ on Instagram

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An Interview with the Founder and MD of ThirdEye Media Clara Armand-Delille, About Building a PR Agency for Start Ups
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