PR Mavens We Love: Karine Delage, Founder, Karyzma Agency

Some kids from a young age simply have a calling. For Karine, it was a passion to communicate.

It first became evident in Montreal when Karine was only 8 years old. She started writing and reporting for the school paper and gained notoriety as the youngest journalist in Quebec. Karine was hooked. From that day on, she immersed herself in everything entertainment. She wrote for 7 Jours magazine, developed a devoted following and by the time she was 13 years old, Karine was actively being sent out to cover important events such as the Grammys, the MTV Music Awards, the Billboard Music Awards - even Woodstock!

These days, armed with a degree in both in Public Affairs and History and experience working at Canada's top PR agency, Karine opened her own shop.

This year, she named a 2017 Top 40 Under 40 award, and is celebrating her firm's 5th anniversary with Karyzma, a new digital series coming out this spring that takes viewers behind the scenes into her PR world.

Name: Karine Delage
Title: Founder
Location: Toronto, Canada
Education: Concordia University, double major in Public Affairs & History
Company: Karyzma Agency
Instagram:
 @karyzmaagency
Twitter: @KaryzmaAgency
Facebook: @karyzmaagency

Tell us a little bit about Karyzma

Karyzma Agency is a full service, multilingual public relations agency. Everyday I have the privilege of working with A-list talents, artists and renowned brands across many categories including fashion, lifestyle, media and technology. 

Whether I am working as a PR specialist, a publicist, a project manager, or an event planner, my priority is to always help my clients accomplish great things and build their brands. 

Share a quick peek into a day in your life

I get up, check email, social media accounts and press reader. The day includes a mix of going to meetings, sending press releases. I go to the gym each and every day, working out is a must to keep myself motivated and focused daily.

What are you currently working on?

Right now we are working on Karl Wolf's new EP (coming out on November 10th), Neon Dreams' new album (just released on September 22nd), Grey Cup (Canadian Super Bowl) Gifting Suite, and the pilot for a show about Karyzma Agency.

 

I wish that people understood how hard we work to get the coverage and plan things for our clients. We don't just hide behind a computer during the day and then party all night.

 

What is a recent job success story that makes you especially proud?

During Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) in September, we hosted seven events in eight days, the most events we've ever had in such a short amount of time. On top of that, we had to plan for the release of an album and a client that was on tour. Plus five of our talents were in town, including one attending the festival for the first time in support of her first major lead role in a blockbuster movie.

Handling all the moving pieces and ensuring everything was managed successfully was a huge win for me.

 

What is the most memorable moment in your career thus far?

I think working with Will Smith 5 years ago was really memorable because it was the first time ever that I'd worked with a talent on that level. It really helped push me further on my path to success.

What is the most glamorous moment in your career thus far?

I have several because of what I do. Each and every glamorous moment would be different, I would either receive tons of media coverage or I would walk down the red carpet with a talent. It doesn't have to be an A-lister, but getting a brand or artist coverage on a major platform would do it for me.

 

What can you tell us about your new series

The show came about because there is a lack of knowledge of the PR world in Canada and I wanted to change that.

You'll see me help keep our talent on schedule and on message, as well as work with my mentor and client, Laura Miller of Inspired Soap Works - who helps keep me grounded! My best friend Dru Grange will also make an appearance and we support one another through her musical comeback and my crazy schedule and personal challenges.

PR can be stressful and full of rejection - how do you handle to the pressure?

Honestly I used to train at the gym, but two years ago I decided to get back into it and it's been helping me focus better and reduce my stress. I lost 40 pounds by eating better and training.

What are three current favorite tools, apps or products that you love and why?

Instagram, Press Reader, and Google apps (on the business end). I do also need to mention Starbucks, because I couldn't survive a day without a Grande Americano with sugar-free Dolce aka my little pick me up!

What do you wish more people understood about your job?

I wish that people understood how hard we work to get the coverage and plan things for our clients. We don't just hide behind a computer during the day and then party all night. There is so much more to our work and that's why we are working on a behind the scenes of the agency to show the Canadian public.

Whether I am working as a PR specialist, a publicist, a project manager, or an event planner, my priority is to always help my clients accomplish great things and build their brands. 

What are you excited about right now in terms of industry trends?

I'm excited to see how the PR world is evolving and it's getting so diverse with social media. There is so much more that can be done and new levels to be reached.

What's the biggest challenge facing lifestyle communicators right now?

It's getting harder to get coverage with all of the cuts in the media world. We just need to be more creative.

What advice do you have for your younger self?

Follow you dreams and your passions. Yes, you will make tons of mistakes but they will help you grow stronger and understand yourself better. To be honest, I would never change anything about my past, because you need to learn from your mistakes and I strongly believe that it's the best way to learn.

Anything else we should know?

We are always looking for interns and I will be doing more speaking gigs in 2018.

Thanks Karine!

About This Author

Maria is a passionate and innovative media specialist, always eager to learn new skills and expand her horizons. She is a junior at San Diego State University pursuing a degree in journalism and media studies with an emphasis in public relations. Besides trips to the beach, Maria loves traveling to new countries and reading fashion and beauty blogs.