Meeting Renata Barbosa de Oliveira in São PauloI’m wandering through the upmarket neighbourhood of Jardins Paulista, window-shopping and people-watching on Alameda Lorena. This has always been the neighbourhood of international luxury brands, but I am noticing more and more Brazilian brands popping up between the likes of Louis Vuitton and Nespresso. Luxury and cool brands like Diletto ice-cream, Natura beauty, Carla Amorim, Osklen, Le Lis Noir and Reserva have all opened flagship stores here in recent years.

“I guess that’s why Renata wanted to meet here,” I think to myself as I find a free table on the terrace of 7Molinos, a trendy bakery-café. Renata is a well-established PR expert, with her own agency that focuses on design, decoration, beauty and luxury brands.

Just as I’m ordering a café com leite, Renata arrives. “I’ll have one of those too!” she says with a big smile to the waitress and sits Logo CoolBrands Womendown across from me. “Anouk! It’s so great to meet you! I want to hear all about your global branding adventure! My colleague Milena is going to join us in a minute, she’s just down the road.”

While we wait for Milena, I tell her about our experiences in different parts of the world and what we have been discovering in Brazil.

“While traveling I try to meet with opinion leaders like entrepreneurs and marketing PR professionals to understand what’s going on and how things work in the region. I like to share the stories  from other regions with you and take your story to other regions. I heard you only work with a select few customers and offer them 100 percent personalized service.”

Cafe 7 Molinos in Alameda Lorena, Jardins Paulista

“Your information is 100 percent accurate!” says a voice behind me. “Renata only gives our clients the very best!”

Renata and I both look up and see Milena standing there. “May I join you?” she says.

“Anouk, what you need to know about Renata’s approach is that it is quite unique. I have been working for her for 10 years and I am really proud of the agency. Renata’s personal touch is invaluable: she really gets involved with clients and is there for them every step of the way. They even have her mobile number and can call her 24/7.”

“And let me tell you,” Renata adds with a sparkling laugh, “they use it!”

“So do you specialize in Brazilian or also international brands?” I ask.

“We mainly work with Brazilian beauty, fashion and design brands – I love design, really it’s my passion – but of course I’m also open to working with international brands,” says Renata. “Actually, recently we have been getting more and more business clients – for example Portuguese hotel chains that are expanding into the Brazilian market.”

“Besides the personal touch, what do you think sets your approach apart from that of other agencies?” I ask.

“We try to communicate the story of the people behind the brand,” says Renata as she takes a sip of her coffee. “To ‘humanize’ the brand, so to speak. Products and brands can look alike, but the real differentiating factor are the people and their story.”

“Combine that with the personal touch and you have the perfect PR boutique agency!” says Milena as she waves to the waiter to order another round of coffees.

© 2013 CoolBrands – Around the World in 80 Brands

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