Shortly after graduating from NYU Gallatin, Mallory Blair, and her friend Bianca Caampued—two petite women who both stand about five feet tall—founded Small Girls PR based on a grand idea: help companies express their personality through digital strategies and blow-out events. Their creative and sometimes off-the-wall marketing ideas were a huge hit and the business quickly soared. In 2013, Mallory made Forbes magazine’s “30 Under 30” list based on Small Girls’ public image development for an impressive client roster that includes Fortune 500 corporations like General Electric and AOL, tech-based companies like Meetup and Gawker, and quirky new businesses like Tortoise & Blonde Eyewear. For Mallory it has all been, quite simply, a dream come true.
A self-professed nerd who spends much of her free time online, Mallory studied the intersection of art and technology at NYU’s Gallatin School of Individualized Study. “I loved the freedom and flexibility I had at Gallatin,” she explains. “I explored so many different subjects. I took an artists and repertoire course at the Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music and Sociology of Art Worlds at the Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development—basically anything that intrigued me.” At NYU she learned to see the world through an interdisciplinary lens. “I was challenged to take everything in my life—internships, course work, books, music—and figure out how they all connected,” she says. “It’s an approach that has made a big difference at Small Girls.”
Outside class Mallory served as music chair for NYU’s Program Board, a student group that plans campus-wide activities. The group sent her to the SXSW music festival in Austin, Texas, where she met new bands and learned about emerging technologies. Mallory also interned at a boutique market research agency and with a DJ and party promoter, and then served as on-air talent for MTVu and Paper magazine’s Paper TV. “What was amazing about NYU was how many opportunities I had to make connections—and not just in one industry,” she says. “Once I graduated these relationships evolved into valuable work contacts.”
One of Small Girls’ early gigs was building brand partnerships for the jewelry company Sorrelli. They negotiated a cross-promotional campaign for the brand with Pinkberry and a roster of fashion bloggers. “I knew Sorrelli’s chief marketing offi cer because she’d graduated from NYU a couple years ahead of me. After we proved our success with that project, everything began to snowball,” she says. Small Girls has been recognized by the New York Times, the New York Post, Business Insider, and the New York Observer.
With a growing client base, Small Girls is considering opening a second office in Los Angeles. And Mallory is ecstatic to promote products and ideas she believes in. “But I’ll always have my hands in many pots, thinking about what’s next,” she says. “I think Gallatin really spoiled me!”
— From NYU Quarterly