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30 Best Leaders to Watch 2022

“We focus on one-on-one marketing, helping people best market themselves as individuals in a more authentic way” — Claudia Duran, Chief Strategist at The Communication Studio

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“I have gotten clearer and more intuitive over the years. My experience as a working professional and living healthy (I don’t drink or smoke and have a daily meditation and gratitude practice) have opened new avenues. I read people and situations better and depend on my gut to steer me in the right direction.”

The Communication Studio (TCS) is a lifestyle agency, focusing on luxury matchmaking, personal coaching, and philanthropy.

TCS was incorporated in 2015 and is based out of Miami.

The Silicon Review reached out to Claudia Duran, Chief Strategist at The Communication Studio, who spoke about how the agency is making a difference in this segment and plans to stay at the forefront. Below is an excerpt.

Head to Head with Claudia Duran, Chief Strategist at The Communication Studio

How would you describe your career journey so far? And tell us what motivated you to establish The Communication Studio.

Both thrilling and a little bipolar! I have had a very wide-ranging journey that started 20 years ago in the entertainment industry. I worked for Playboy TV International and Hallmark Channel in Miami and NYC. After six years, I left the industry to go and run marketing and business development for a small Italian-owned start-up in the hotel business where we had a ball, building the company into a major player in the hospitality industry and thriving from a boutique office of about 6-8 people to a global corporation with over 50 employees in four cities. It was there that I met a former client and mentor, who I then went to head marketing for in LA for a new uber-luxury private jet operator and charter company. Working in LA in that business was both insane and a blast. We had multiple Forbes billionaires as clients, and I got to collaborate with people I had long admired such as top advertising agencies, major movie studios, The Annie Leibovitz Studio, Variety, and the influential Hollywood Business Manager community. I was eager to make a splash launching this new operator turned management and charter player in the aviation space and we worked tirelessly to do so. After the launch and a year later, the company went a different direction and I found myself wondering, what would be my next move. It’s not easy to settle after having those extremely gratifying creative experiences. I interviewed at Warner Brothers, but it seemed like too corporate, I explored luxury real estate but couldn’t get excited about that either. I thought this is it that my career is over.

Luckily, I had some awesome people around me who encouraged me to help them with marketing for their businesses, so “for the time being,” until I could “figure things out,” I freelanced. Freelancing started growing and I graduated to consulting. Consulting then flirted with starting my own business. I was a hesitant entrepreneur. After assessing the job market back in Miami at the time, I settled on pushing forward with my venture. It was then that I was introduced to the CEO of Elite Connections, Sherri. She and I began collaborating on referrals first, and things quickly fell into place from there, opening up a new and exciting path I never would have even begun to imagine as a possibility: high-end matchmaking! Once again, it was the same skill set: marketing, branding, and business and relationship development. I had always loved communication and psychology, and much to my surprise, I began to make successful matches and even marriages, and counsel clients who asked me for help and guidance. What started as a marketing and PR boutique evolved into international matchmaking, coaching, and mission and philanthropy-based company.

“We will continue to offer authentic services to singles wanting verified, curated, background-checked quality matches from a source they trust. People will always want love, encouragement, and guidance.” 

Q. Trust is one of the most important currencies of leadership that requires authenticity and consistency to maintain. What’s your take on this?

I have gotten clearer and more intuitive over the years. My experience as a working professional and living healthy (I don’t drink or smoke and have a daily meditation and gratitude practice) have opened new avenues. I read people and situations better and depend on my gut to steer me in the right direction. You can’t trust anyone, if you can’t trust yourself.

Moreover, I believe in transparency, accountability, and positive reinforcement with the people I work with. I have never been a micromanager; I believe in finding the right people, who are intrinsically motivated and talented in their own area, and giving them the resources to find their way and contribute in their own voice.

Q. Who do you look up to and why?

I look up to my mother. She came to the U.S. from Bolivia as the youngest of five children to take on a prestigious position at the Inter-American Development Bank in Washington D.C when she was only in her early twenties.

The family faced economic challenges due to drastic government reforms. These issues were common and tumultuous in Latin America at that time, and continue to exist in some places even today. She moved to the United States and started a new life. I am extremely grateful that my mother is alive and well today. And snowbirding in Miami (laughs).

Q. What are the different services The Communication Studio offers? And how unique are these services relative to what other participants in the industry offer?

Primarily, matchmaking and coaching! That said, we focus on one-to-one marketing, helping people best market themselves as individuals in a more authentic way; who they are, and what makes them unique.

Q. Can you provide us with one or two success stories describing the challenges your clients faced and how your solutions helped them overcome those challenges?

Yes. Early on, a widow, who had lost her husband to pancreatic cancer, approached me seeking our services. I worked closely with her to uncover her fears and hesitation which eventually boosted her confidence and got her looking and feeling her best. She is now married to a man who we matched her with on the first match!

What do you think are the biggest challenges your industry will face in the next five years? And how do you plan to counter those challenges?

From a matchmaking standpoint, we have already weathered the biggest challenge with Covid subsiding. People are so burnt out with anonymous, unverified digital frustrations and scams that rose to the next level during the pandemic. To counter this, we will continue to offer authentic services to singles wanting verified, curated, background-checked quality matches from a source they trust. People will always want love, encouragement, and guidance.    

“I believe in transparency, accountability, and positive reinforcement with the people I work with. I have never been a micromanager; I believe in finding the right people, who are intrinsically motivated and talented in their own area, and giving them the resources to find their way and contribute in their own voice.”

Claudia Duran | Chief Strategist at The Communication Studio

As featured in Business Insider, HBO Max, NBC Telemundo, Elite Daily, The New Tropic, and Voyage Magazine’s ‘Most Inspiring Entrepreneurs in Miami,’ I discovered luxury matchmaking and coaching after 20 years of working in multiple cities, including Miami, LA, and NYC, marketing global brands and successfully launching start-ups in hospitality and private aviation.

Throughout my career, I have inked partnerships with Vogue, Variety, Walt Disney, The Annie Leibovitz Studio, award-winning global advertising agencies, live event production agencies, and spearheaded a global PR campaign promoting Sir Richard Branson.