We had the good fortune of connecting with Diana Darr and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Diana, is there something that you feel is most responsible for your success?
The number 1 thing that has kept my business successful is making God and my family a priority. When you’re starting out, you feel as though you need to be available to everyone else 24/7 so you don’t miss out on important opportunities for yourself or your clients. While it’s a valid concern, especially in the fast-paced world of music PR, I’ve learned that I’m much more productive when I give myself a chance to breathe, and I know my family’s needs are met. I used to carry the idea of multitasking as the only way to run a business properly. I learned the hard way that continuing that pattern was leaving me feeling depleted and unaccomplished, even if it looked like I was getting a ton done on the outside. Now when I feel like there’s too much going on around me, I pause, take a moment to thank God for at least 1 thing that has gone right that day, check in with my family, and then get back to whatever it is I’m working on.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
Diana Darr Media provides PR & Design services for musicians and service-based businesses across the U.S. & Canada. Over the last decade, I found that one of the biggest obstacles many musicians faced was finding the right team members to take over all of the back-end tasks that they were trying to DIY and not making headway on. Many of them understand that they need to be operating as a business. Still, without support behind them to push their projects out to the public, gain media attention, update upcoming shows, create and post social media content, etc., it leaves them very little time to practice and perform and, in many cases, creates an unprofessional image in the eyes of the venues, managers, and booking agents they’re trying to impress. We are in a unique position to provide them with their design assets (branding, photography, website design, social media content, album & merch design, sponsorship guides) and get them the publicity they are seeking for their ongoing projects in one stop. For those who have already been working with others on one or more of those aspects, we come in and fill the void to round out their team. We’re most proud of our relationships with our ongoing clients and grateful that they continue to recommend our services to their peers. Being based in Houston, we’ve gone through several major natural disasters in just a few short years, and they have been extremely understanding and have kept us going through it all. We are very fortunate to have the support system that we do in them, and many of them have also lent their time and talents to various fundraisers and organizations in their times of need. If we ever needed a sign that we’re working with the “right” clients who share our core values, we can point to that.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
As a music publicist, I can’t let a friend leave town without catching at least one live show during their stay. Anything between Galveston and Katy is fair game, and I tend to pack as much as I can into itineraries when I’m given the opportunity to do so. I also love the outdoors & antique shopping, so a lot of time would be spent showing them around my favorite trails and shops. It also helps to break down days into specific areas, so we’re not spending as much time driving in and out of traffic to get from place to place. If we were spending time downtown, we would grab a bite from either Ninfa’s or the Eatsie Boys Food Truck and take a class or attend an event at the Discovery Green, check out the Menil Collection or Japanese Tea Garden, go shopping at Roundhouse Vintage or Wonder Like Wander, and either catch a show at the Truck Yard or The Rustic for dinner and a concert. Depending on the time of year, we might also head back down that way to catch the Houston ballet or an Astros game. If we’re closer to where I live in north Houston, we’re definitely visiting Karbach Brewery for brunch at least once, antique shopping at Vintage Gifts & Antiques, and then over to the Vintage Park shopping center to walk around and check out some boutiques, visit one of the spas (there’s a few to choose from), and grab dinner at El Tiempo Cantina on the square near the fountains where they have live music every weekend. There’s so much to do in and around the Houston metro area, so you definitely have no excuse to be bored when you come out to visit.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
First and foremost, I have to thank God. Literally, none of this would be possible without Him. Going back to the very beginning of my intro into the world of PR over a decade ago, I have Sarah Metzger & Jodi Barris to thank for taking a chance on me and allowing me to prove myself as the lead PR intern at the fashion show we were a part of. I also owe a great deal of gratitude to all of the band members in Moving Matter, especially their bassist, Chris Holland, who taught me everything from writing a press release to reaching out to the media, working the merch booth, and more. Whether they realize it or not, they all played a huge part in my desire to keep pursuing this career that I love so much. I also landed my first few design projects while working with them, and that’s how the beginning stages of building Diana Darr Media came about. A lot of events, both good and bad, had to take place over the years for me to land in Houston and grow my business here. These individuals, in particular, were a part of my journey at critical points throughout my career and either worked directly with me to help me grow Diana Darr Media or offered much-needed guidance and encouragement in other areas that positively influenced my decision to stay here and continue building. Bruce & Terrie Baker, Hayden Baker, Nancy Baker, Dustin Bozarth, Chad Christman, Kelly Daniels, Matt Dunn, Kylie Evans, Reine, Bill & Kim Nash, Nicole Nelson, Dan McGreevy, Nick Medina, Tommy & Angela Mouser (Stryk TV), Mel Nance, Josh Pearson, Rudy Padilla, Chris Parra, Farah Pourzadi, Dino Price, Natalie Reynolds, and Julie Stoian. And, last but not least, my amazing husband, who has encouraged me every step of the way, and my beautiful kids, who make this whole running my own business thing a bit more tolerable even when I’m dealing with 500 crazy schedules year-round. Seeing their little faces light up when they get to hang out backstage at shows, or in the recording studio, or traveling to a new city/venue for the first time is always the coolest feeling.