Sandra Nomoto – President of Conscious Public Relations

Stop worrying, it’s going to be alright, and you’ll be proud of the person you’ve become.

Sandra Nomoto is the President of Conscious Public Relations Inc. A seasoned writer, Sandra has always had a passion for language. She graduated from the University of British Columbia (UBC) in English Literature and Film Studies, where she discovered a passion for film and was a founding member of the Vancouver Short Film Festival.

Sandra’s communications experience is diverse, ranging from event planning to publicity campaigns for the lifestyle, entertainment, and event industries. In addition to publishing poetry in a former life, the majority of her writing now extends to blogging for Vancouver lifestyle site as well as the corporate blog at Conscious PR. She has over a decade of public relations experience in an agency capacity. During this time, she was awarded the 2009 Volunteer of the Year by Women In Film & Television Vancouver for her work on the Vancouver International Women in Film Festival and Spotlight Awards, was featured in the 2010 CRAVE Guide alongside and Danielle LaPorte, and rebranded her company to focus on public relations campaigns for socially and environmentally responsible companies. She is a current member of LOCO BC and eWomenNetwork. Conscious PR is a Certified B Corporation® and a member of LOCO BC, eWomenNetwork, 1% For the Planet, and the Green Chamber of Commerce.

Where did the idea for Conscious Public Relations Inc. come from?

I first started my business in 2008, and a year later had an idea of a more “conscious” PR firm a year later, but I ignored my own idea until two years after that, when I came up with the name “Conscious PR” driving home from an event that night. I bought the website domain and sat on the idea for months until I decided to launch it in 2012. I started attracting the type of clients I wanted to work with, so I simply changed my old name over.

What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?

Every day is different, but I start with reading local news headlines at about 8:30am and checking e-mail at 9am. I eat lunch at noon, and respond to e-mails, have meetings, service clients, and do business development throughout the day.

How do you bring ideas to life?

Most of our work involves figuring out how to communicate our clients’ stories to media effectively or on social media in a way that will engage people. I believe that this is how we bring ideas to life.

What’s one trend that really excites you?

The need for both news stories and social media posts to be more creative in order to get people’s attention and increase engagement is a trend that’s exciting because NO ONE can call themselves an expert. We – and Marketing and Communications professionals at large – are constantly heading in new territory and we’re all learning as we go along.

What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?

This past year I got into the habit of creating my to-do list the night before my work day. It helps me to know what to prepare for and stay focused on the tasks I want to get done rather than spend my day getting organized or prioritizing.

What advice would you give your younger self?

Stop worrying, it’s going to be alright, and you’ll be proud of the person you’ve become.

Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on?

No one’s an expert at social media.

As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?

Meditate. This seems like a personal practice, but entrepreneurs tend to be ON all the time. And it’s really easy to not have balance during your day. Meditation gives you both the mental and physical break that you need to curb the stress that you might not realize is building internally.

What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business? Please explain how.

Building a sales funnel system with a CRM has really helped. While everyone might have their own way of getting sales or building leads, using a CRM software not only allows you to get organized but also keep track of your previous conversations with people, and project how well off you’ll be in the near future. It’s probably not a coincidence that I’ll be making the most revenue this year (2016) after using my current CRM software for one year.

What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?

Seven years ago, I outsourced a service that I wasn’t an expert in, hired someone to do it, and put it into my contract. When the service failed (due to tech problems that were out of our control), my client threatened to sue me and it was the first time I had been yelled at over the phone. I learned that I should never promise a service that I don’t know I can deliver in a contract.

What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?

Create a unique journal cover. Journals (books with blank pages inside) are bookstore products that’ll never go away, so you can stand out by creating a cover that’ll draw people in when it’s sitting on a bookshelf.

What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why? )

I spent $100 on upgrading my intern’s Dropbox account so that they have enough space to view and add to our clients’ folders. Cloud storage is amazing.

What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive? How do you use it?

Since our PR agency is virtual, Slack is what we use to “clock in” to the office and communicate with each other. Aside from simply being a chat service, we can also store files and links in channels for each client. I love staying organized electronically.

What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?

I just went through Danielle LaPorte’s The Firestarter Sessions, which is a great inspirational/motivational handbook for what to do when you have a great idea or ideas. We need more good ideas that forward the world, and people to act on them.

What is your favorite quote?

In the movie Jerry Maguire, Jerry’s mentor says, “Roll with the punches. Tomorrow’s another day.” Life isn’t going to be all roses and we all have to go through adversity, especially as business owners. Always be looking forward. I continue to tell myself this when I have tough days.

Tell us about one friend or acquaintance of yours who we should interview on IdeaMensch? Who are they, how do we get a hold of them and what are they doing?

One of our clients is Focus Professional Services, an IT consulting firm that employs adults on the autism spectrum. It’s an amazing social venture that’s helping these adults with specialized skills to gain employment, but also companies who are looking to increase diversity in their workplace. It’s win/win/win for all. They can be found at


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