The Silicon Review
“We pride ourselves on our ability to constantly evolve and be forward-thinking. We recognize where the market is now but also see where the market is evolving.”
It is becoming increasingly difficult for brands to get attention on the internet. This is largely because every business, big or small, has invaded the online world creating an insurmountable amount of noise. This has made consumers extremely skeptical about brands that indulge in self-promotion. That is why the demand for new, innovative PR and social media marketing strategies has been on the rise. The quest for an alternate approach has compelled brands to appreciate the power of influencers. Influencer marketing is becoming a favorite among digital marketers and business owners. Many brands are investing a significant amount of time and resources into executing successful influencer marketing campaigns.
Distinction Agency is a cutting edge, modern day marketing agency that specializes in athlete and influencer marketing. The firm represents exceptional content creators in various sectors such as entertainment, food, lifestyle, sports, and travel. Distinction excels in strategic partnerships with various brands across the globe. The firm discerned that no brand is the same, henceforth customizes each partnership based on its unique expertise. With the support of holistic PR strategies and social media marketing, the company develops and executes creative influencer marketing strategies to augment its clients’ brand stories and reach millions of people worldwide.
In Conversation with the Founders, Alex Onaindia and Jonathan Lubic.
What was the reason behind the genesis of the Distinction Agency? How did you expand your company and its offerings over the years?
Distinction Agency was established to solve modern issues faced by brands and influencers. Over the past five years, we’ve seen marketing strategies leveraging individuals with a large presence on social media. Brands now recognize the importance of influencer marketing but do not know where to begin when it comes to sourcing influencers. On the same token, influencers know they’re able to monetize their social brands but don’t know how to go about securing brand partnerships. Distinction was set up to bridge the gap between brands and influencers. This includes identifying the right talent for brands and also assuring talent gets compensated with what they deserve. In addition to that, we’ve expanded this to a large roster of professional athletes across major national and international sports. We have also been building out our PR and social media services to help both individuals and companies increase their brand awareness. Finally, we hosted our first event in January 2020, a private Super Bowl yacht party in Miami with various sponsors and guests that included athletes, influencers, and executives from the sports and entertainment sector.
How successful was your first project?
Our first influencer marketing campaign was a learning experience. We were able to deliver all we promised to the brand and both parties were satisfied. However, we learned that we needed to improve the process of how we identify the right influencers for each brand that hires us. We were lacking the analytics and software needed to deeply dive into the data and make sure that who we recommended for a campaign can deliver ROI to the client based on their KPIs. That learning experience has propelled us forward and made us significantly more effective.
What challenges did you face in your initial years? What can your peers learn from it?
A common challenge many companies face in their first year is establishing credibility within their respective industry. When brands are looking for a new vendor, they request examples of previous work that the particular company has done. Within your first year, you don’t often have examples readily available. This is the time when it’s important to be willing to work at a discounted rate to generate results you can share to earn future clients. After building out a few case studies, you’ll then have a foundation of examples to use when recruiting new clients or customers.
“Earning trust and respect of consumers all around the world is through consistent focus on delivering high quality in all of our actions.” How do you interpret this statement?
We 100 percent agree with the statement. As an agency providing client services, we strive to consistently provide high-quality work at all times. Trust takes time to build and is easy to lose. We focus on always having our clients’ best interests in mind and ensure that we are consistent.
How do you stay relevant to the consumer interests and needs in this highly volatile market?
We pride ourselves on our ability to constantly evolve and be forward-thinking. We recognize where the market is now but also see where the market is evolving. As an agency, we never want to be set in our ways in a “system” because that can often lead to companies being stuck in the past. It’s our job to be advisors to our clients and they often rely on us to help guide their marketing strategies for upcoming quarters.
If you have to list five success factors, what would they be and why?
Do you have any new products ready to be launched?
We’re currently focused on three areas of growth: content creation, social media, and events.
Where do you see your company a couple of years from now?
We see ourselves becoming an industry leader by continuing to expand our client roster and service offerings. We will continue to provide marketing solutions that deliver our clients a return on their investment.
Meet the Distinct Leaders behind the growth of Distinction Agency
Alex Onaindia, CEO: Alex Onaindia, Co-founder, serves as the Chief Executive Officer of the Distinction Agency. Prior to co-founding Distinction Agency, he has worked for several PR and marketing agencies, rising from an entry-level employee to a VP position before starting Distinction Agency. Mr. Onaindia also worked in the the Miami Dolphins Communications Department for three years. Throughout his career, he has developed strong relationships with Fortune 500 companies and emerging start-ups, professional athletes, marquee media, social media influencers, and non-profit organizations through marketing and communications campaigns. He holds a degree in Sports Management from Florida State University.
Jonathan Lubic, President: Jonathan Lubic, Co-founder, serves as the President of Distinction Agency. He began his career at a local Miami PR agency as an intern and worked his way up to leading the busiss development efforts for the agency. After growing that agency for almost five years, Mr. Lubic teamed up with Alex to help solve problems facing modern-day companies in the influencer marketing space. He graduated from Florida International University with a degree in Organizational Communications.
“Distinction Agency was set up to bridge the gap between brands and influencers. This includes identifying the right talent for brands and also assuring talent gets compensated with what they deserve.”