Mary Del Castillo, SVP, Creative Client Services At 4media Group

Tell me a little about your background and current day job.  

My background is all things PR services. I have been in the PR industry for a good number of years. I started at a TV and radio news monitoring service, moved on to a print press release company, then to broadcast. I am now settled into my role at 4media group in broadcast/digital PR. This includes activities like filming b-roll, planning media tours, creating PSAs and more, but now also includes social, online and paid campaigns for global brands, agencies, associations and government agencies. What also drew me here is that 4media group offered PR market research which I had never been directly involved with in the past.

What do you enjoy most about your job? Are there any moments you are most proud of? 

Working in broadcast for many years, I feel fortunate that we have the opportunity to partner with clients on what tend to be their most important and impactful campaigns and activations.    Our role may change with each campaign, as sometimes we have the opportunity to provide full counsel from our media, production and/or PR market research teams when the campaign is just evolving while with others we might partner on a single broadcast tactic or quick-turn crisis communications. It keeps us on our toes!

If I didn’t have MANY proud moments after working in the industry for as many years as I have, I’d be in trouble or in the wrong field! In general, I’m proud of the relationship that I have with the clients that I work with and any of their successes make me happy. Some clients I have been working with for years!  

Most recently, I had the opportunity to work very closely with clients in regards to COVID-19 and vaccinations. This included producing media tours with Dr. Fauci and Dr. Collins, the Surgeon General and many pharma and health associations. Over the years, I have had the opportunity to partner with the amazing American Red Cross regarding disaster relief, blood shortages and more. Those people never rest! I also just helped produce a global satellite media tour for Virgin Orbit’s satellite launch – that was out of this world!

Working in the creative space, how do you get inspired for a new campaign? 

The creative process here at 4media group tends to be a customized group effort and it’s all hands on deck. We are sort of a “tactics toolbox” for agencies, brands and associations, and as their needs change our approach changes with it. This helps our creative stay fresh and fun! Our research, digital, production and broadcast teams LOVE to brainstorm with clients whether it be at the very start of a campaign, with ideas to pitch to their clients, or to help find ways to breathe life into a campaign that needs a nudge.  

One not so serious but very creative example of our research and broadcast teams working together was when our client came to us with their client, a garbage disposal manufacturer. The task was to get more broadcast placements for their brand. Our research team created a quirky PR survey about “when do consumers know to throw away old food from the fridge – by smell, taste, sight or more…” We then paired consumer responses with an environmental talent that we secured and booked a satellite media tour. During the segments, the talent reminded viewers that spoiled food should go into the garbage disposal and not in the trash. This story turned into a well-received national satellite media tour! Not breaking news, but fun!  This research even ended up in USA Today.  

How has your experience been with WWPR and what advice would you give to someone wanting to join?

I joined WWPR many moons ago. Over the years, I have had membership to WWPR and other associations, and my experience here has been the absolute best. I have found that WWPR is an amazing group of approachable, intelligent and powerful women. My participation has varied over the years, I have assisted with membership and WOY and enjoyed both roles. 

I always advise any women in our industry to join right away if they are not familiar with WWPR. I know they won’t regret it!