Kyle Parks began his career telling stories for the St. Pete Times. A journalist at heart, Parks has been continuing in that vein ever since. Now Parks works with news media to tell his clients' stories as co-founder and principal of B2 Communications, a leading St. Petersburg public relations firm. In his work at B2 Communications, Parks has built relationships of trust with some of the area's largest local and regional non-profit and for-profit organizations.
Years in St. Pete
since 1984 except for a 3-year stint in Atlanta.
Organizations involved in
Urban Land Institute, University of Tampa Board of Fellows, Preserve the Burg
What gets you out of bed every day?
The opportunity to tell stories. A lot of my work in public relations really ties back to my journalism experience and telling stories about how people are helped by products and services or how our nonprofit clients make a difference in the community really gets me excited.
Why St. Pete?
Moved here in 1984 for the job at St. Petersburg Times. Had to look at a map to see where it was. I was probably going to move Wichita to work at a paper as good as this one. But once I got here I fell in love with it. All of my kids were born here and raised here and just really feel that Pinellas County and St. Pete is pretty unique.
What is one habit that you keep?
There’s a Progressive commercial right now where its self-help group of people who are turning into their parents. One of them said, “I keep calling everyone ‘Chief.'” And I realized my kids told me that I’m always calling them ‘Chief.’ I do it.
Who are some people that influence you?
My business partner, Missy Hurley. My girlfriend, Kelly McBride. My mom, who’s 88 and still rockin’ it. I’m surrounded by very strong, powerful, intelligent women.
What is one piece of insight - a book, methodology, practice - that you would share with our readers?
Book: The Trusted Advisor. My business is one where I need to earn the trust of my clients and have them value my opinion and thoughts. I think anybody in business, that’s really where you form a relationship that’s more than transactional. That also makes my relationships with my clients – on a personal level – a lot more rewarding.
What is one thing you wish you knew about your work 3 years ago?
We have worked really hard the last couple of years to be much more intentional about how to find good people. The key to any organization is how good your people are. We were doing the basics but the last couple of years Missy and I have worked really harder to say we are going to spend more and more time on that because that’s what really matters the most.
We are moving, like many modern public relations firms are, into expanding our role much beyond just working with the news media – still incredibly important to us – but also much more into smart content creation that’s positioning our clients as experts in ways that they can be found on the internet.