Creative, Innovative, Strategic, Communications

Looking for passion, innovation, creativity, strategic thinking and a little fun mixed in?

Korrelation Communications offers all of that...and more.

We specialize in: public relations; marketing communications; special event management; crisis and corporate communications; media and presentation skills training; and strategic brand planning.

 
Undisclosed
 
Undisclosed
 
Freelancer
 Founded
2009
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Toronto, Canada
headquarters

Focus

? These focus breakdowns are estimates provided by the Clutch team. Service line and focus breakdowns can change at any time and are subject to the company’s discretion once they claim ownership over their Clutch profile.
Service lines
  • Branding
  • Public Relations
  • Marketing Strategy
Branding focus
Public relations

Reviews

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PR Services for Legal Tech Company

"We found her behavior curious and would have enjoyed a more detailed understanding of her efforts." 

Quality: 
0.5
Schedule: 
0.5
Cost: 
0.5
Willing to refer: 
0.5
The Project
 
Less than $10,000
 
Nov. 2018
Project summary: 

Korrelation was contracted to handle collateral production and media outreach for a brand exposure effort. The engagement ended when Korrelation ceased communication and failed to produce deliverables.

 

The Reviewer
 
1-10 Employees
 
Canada
Executive, Legal Tech Company
 
Verified
The Review
Feedback summary: 

While contract structure mediated financial losses, Korrelation’s misleading claims regarding media connections undercut a valuable marketing opportunity. Their tendency to obscure missteps and periods of non-communication, rather than own up to them, were detrimental to success.

 

A Clutch analyst personally interviewed this client over the phone. Below is an edited transcript.

BACKGROUND

Introduce your business and what you do there.

I’m the founder and CEO of a legal tech company helping consumers create documents like wills.

OPPORTUNITY / CHALLENGE

What challenge were you trying to address with Korrelation?

We’d just completed a poll and survey of our entire market, and we’d been accepted into a tech accelerator. We wanted to bring some exposure to that, so Korrelation was tasked with creating educational collateral for multiple channels, including news agencies, newspapers, and other publications.

SOLUTION

What was the scope of their involvement?

Pamela (Principal/Owner, Korrelation Communications) was supposed to handle all media relations with top Canadian publications. She was also going to design the campaign, create the press kits, and handle press releases and media outreach, pitching, and scheduling. The statistics produced by our previous poll and survey effort were going to play a large part as well.

Regarding media outreach, we wanted to highlight our educational and statistical materials, rather than our product itself. Pamela was responsible for developing key client messages, creating a national targeted media list across various industries including consumer, lifestyle, finance, tech, and business. We wanted her to conduct outreach, secure interviews, prepare interview documents, and attend those interviews as appropriate.

Pamela started with a series of calls and meetings to understand our needs. Thanks to our extensive data and reasonable expectations, she captured our requirements well. The minute we signed the contract and paid half of it, however, she only replied selectively to our emails and texts. One such response was a weekly status note where she mentioned she was drafting a press release and wanted us to review it. I never saw the draft, and she claimed to be having email issues when I asked her for it. She then fell into a pattern of appearing to deliver work but claiming to suffer from technical issues. After two and a half weeks, I terminated the contract via email.

What is the team dynamic?

I only had contact with Pamela. Close to when we terminated our contract, she CC'd a group mailing list, which made it look like she had a broader team. During the procurement process, she said she was an independent consultant. We spoke on the phone both before and after I sent the termination notice and I asked her to put us in touch with someone else at her firm. She agreed, but then we didn’t hear from her again. There may be other people there, but my gut feeling is that it was a ruse. I don’t want to make any assumptions, however, so the situation could be different.

How did you come to work with Korrelation?

We primarily looked on LinkedIn for people who were second connections to either myself or someone on my team. We prefer reaching out to people cold, and Pamela was one of the people who responded. Before engaging, she made it seem like she had quite a bit of traction with various news agencies including radio, TV, newspapers, and magazines. During our introductory conversation, she told us that she’d drummed up quite a lot of interest already, and that people were responding to our different campaigns. We felt that contracting her—given her assertiveness before the fact—would get us featured in many of the places she claimed to be connected to. 

We did reach out to her references, including the CEO of a company she claimed to be currently consulting with. The CEO was caught off guard because they’d released Pamela from her contract a year and a half ago. From a methodology standpoint, we set ourselves up for failure. We rejected several companies that had wonderful references and great reviews on Clutch. We realize now that people who are good at their jobs rely on Clutch reviews to vouch for their work during the procurement process.

How much have you invested with them?

Our initial contract was for $1000, for November. We discussed a 13-month retainer but decided to carve out one month to start. We paid half the retainer in the beginning, but we received nothing in return. We asked for a refund and told her that we wouldn’t chase her for it. We’ve chalked this relationship up to a learning experience and now want to move on without any conflict.

What is the status of this engagement?

We signed on in November 2018 and worked together for two and a half weeks before terminating the contract. We didn’t have any written contact after notifying her we were ending the engagement. 

RESULTS & FEEDBACK

Describe the impact this engagement has had on your business.

The engagement didn’t produce any assets. November is the most important month in our industry, and because of these delays, we won’t be able to publish our statistics until 2019. We invested $2,000 in this survey, and Pamela wasn't able to leverage the results. We wouldn’t have invested those funds if we weren’t confident we could take advantage of the results. This has been a stressful process for us, as a startup.

How was project management handled?

Even though she's based in Toronto, we conversed primarily over email, text, and phone. We had many calls before paying the $500 deposit, but we only had one more afterward, just before we terminated the contract. We scheduled multiple in-person meetings, but she missed all of them. In our two-and-a-half-week engagement, there was also a six-day period of no communication, during which we sent several emails and texts. Thanks to this experience, we know to always meet our vendor in person and ask for multiple references. We’ve also started relying heavily on social proof like Clutch reviews.

Is there anything that the vendor did well or that you would consider a strength?

She seemed to understand our business well during the pre-sale process.

In what specific areas can they improve?

From our perspective, there was a troubling lack of transparency in Pamela’s work. Though she told us her press contacts were responding well to our material, only one of them mentioned speaking with her after we were introduced to them via another third party. We found her behavior curious and would have enjoyed a more detailed understanding of her efforts.

What advice do you have for clients with similar needs to yours?

We’ve written this off as a learning experience, but it’s important for us to leave some objective advice so other startups don’t find themselves in the same position. This can also be an opportunity for Pamela to get some better reviews that negate this one. From what we’ve seen, people who are confident in their jobs rely on networks of people—including peer professionals—to vouch for their capabilities. It’s important to look deeply at the provider’s existing customer base. It’s also important to develop a focused scope and carve out test budgets for vendors being considered. We did this, and we protected ourselves a bit contractually.

0.5
Overall Score
  • 0.5 Scheduling
    ON TIME / DEADLINES
  • 0.5 Cost
    Value / within estimates
    The value was there, so the rating would be better if she’d delivered.
  • 0.5 Quality
    Service & deliverables
    We didn’t receive any deliverables.
  • 0.5 NPS
    Willing to refer
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