Janine is ace-ing her DIY PR

Meet Janine.  She's co-founder of the work place culture specialists Happy HQ and a gold star example of someone who's doing a brilliant job DIY-ing their PR, having been featured in titles such as Stylist and Start-Ups and speaking at some incredible events.  

Who says B-2-B service businesses can't get great PR for themselves?!

Janine has been both a 1-2-1 client and part of my DIY PR Membership and is living, breathing proof that you can do your own PR when you set your mind to it. 

Here she tells us how she's done it (and hopefully inspires you to do the same!) 

Tell Us about Your Business - What do you do?

I’m co-founder of a culture consultancy called HappyHQ which was founded over three years ago alongside Louisa Mordant. We partner with companies looking to create people-first cultures built on solid culture foundations – which includes culture mapping, workshops, and consultancy.

Can you tell us some of your PR highlights? What are you most proud of? 

I’m a huge fan of Courier Magazine who’ve supported the concept of HappyHQ from the very early days. They featured in an interview with our tips on how to be a positive leader across a double page spread. I’m not sure if that’s a generational thing, but there'a always something about getting print coverage, especially a fresh magazine off the shelves.   We’ve also had some great thought-leadership and interview ops for culture trends coverage with the likes of Stylist, Startups Magazine, and Glamour.

 Louisa and I have also just finished delivering a variety of talks and panel discussions at The Start Up Show and Spring Fair on topics relating to culture, hiring, and happiness at work. A lot of prep work goes into them, so I’m always proud when we put ourselves out there and tell our story. We believe every company culture starts with the founders’ story – so it’s important that we lead by example and tell ours. 

How have you found DIY-ing your PR? Has anything surprised you?

You can’t underestimate the power of community and accountability. Especially when working on your own or with a small team. Pippa does a great job of being the cheerleader you need to constantly remind you to put the time and effort in.  

What impact does the PR have on your business?

 As far as impact goes, we always see spikes in website traffic from national pieces of coverage. We’ve also had client inquiries from people reading, listening, or seeing a partnership announcement too – I especially love it when someone has read a piece in other parts of the world.  

As well as boosting visibility and credibility, I’d say it also personally impacts the team through validation too –  when you see earned coverage, it’s a reminder that you’ve created something people care to write or talk about. That always feels great and keep you going for more. 

What’s the best piece of business advice you’ve received?

Just be yourself. To me this means speaking from the heart, being comfortable to not have all the answers, failing happily, sharing what I’ve learnt, and working with people or partners who support you for all the right reasons. 

What advice would you give people who want to do PR for their business?

Take time to figure out your core values and use them as a creative platform to guide your PR plan and ideas. For example, one of HappyHQs core values is radically transparent – which has opened up collaborations with the likes of Salary Transparent Street. Our value Stay Curious means we’re also always either reviewing research, writing about culture trends, or interviewing people who are disrupting the world of work. Brands like Patagonia and Airbnb do a brilliant job of putting their core values into action through campaigns, strategic partners, and stories. When you use your values as a compass, you will be more consistent in all your messaging, decisions and activities. 

What’s your favourite bit about being an entrepreneur?

When I’m passionate about an idea, I love bringing it to life. I’m not a very patient person when I’m excited about something. So it would 100% be the freedom to come up with an idea and implement it straight away without client sign-off and endless, unnecessary meetings.

And the worst?

It never ends. There’s always so much to do. There’s more flexibility, but much longer hours, which means I’ve had to make sacrifices along the way. Though I’m far too driven to make a difference to the world of work, so there’s no quitting any time soon, we’re only just getting started.

Can you bust a PR Myth for us? 

That you have to wait until you’re ready to put yourself out there. I’ve pitched ideas to journalists that haven’t been right but they’ve kept me on their radar and come back for commentary for other features. With every ‘no’ you’re closer to a yes – so, what are you waiting for? (and good luck). 



Stay connected with our news and updates

Join our mailing list to receive the latest news and updates from our team. Your information will not be shared.


50% Complete

Subscribe to our newsletter

To get all the latest news, offers and interesting stuff from The PR Set