By Eric Dehm
If you look up the top veteran-owned companies you’ll find some similarities between them. They’re proud of their service, they embrace the military/veteran community and if they’re at the very top of the ‘vetrepreneur’ world, they’re most likely represented by LifeFlip Media. The public relations and integrated marketing firm counts Grunt Style, CounterStrike Coffee and Combat Flip Flops, just to name a few, among their clients.
LifeFlip is veteran-owned itself, Founder & CEO of the company Eric Mitchell is a Marine Corps vet who first moved into the world of PR working for large companies focused on the tech and sports industries before deciding that he wanted to strike out on his own.
“There was just a point where it started triggering in my head that I’m not going to do this forever for a big brand I want to take this and move it into a whole new realm,” Mitchell tells ConnectingVets.com. “The one place I recognized that I’m always welcome and always speaking the same language was my own kind, which is the veteran world.”
And so, Mitchell created LifeFlip Media with the goal of representing his fellow veterans who he knew could benefit from his skill set. He set out to create those symbiotic relationships and quickly identified a target group of companies, and as one would expect from a Marine, he aimed to get into the thick of things quickly.
“I saw an article online, I think Mark Rockefeller made it, about the top 25 veteran startups that you should know,” Mitchell says. “I told my team ‘‘I want those guys, those are our clients’ and now we’ve got just about 100% of them.”
In dealing with veteran clients, Mitchell has seen some common factors that lead to success, one of which being the lack of reticence, or even fear, to promote themselves and their vet credentials. He says that if that’s an issue for a prospective vetrepreneur, they need to address it head on if they want to succeed.
“It’s the biggest thing you can do,” Mitchell says. “Get comfortable with yourself, you need to be able to talk about yourself… it’s like ripping off a band-aid, you’ve just got to do it and jump into it. Always start local, then regional, then national. Start with your local paper down the street to tell your story.”
If a veteran company has a great idea they believe in, work hard and get to that national level, or even before they spread nationally, there will be no shortage of companies looking to represent them in the PR world and Eric Mitchell and the team at LifeFlip Media aim to be the first in line.