A Daring Start
In February of 1976, James Barron left his position as a highly regarded art director for a thriving DE agency that provided corporate communications to launch Barron Associates, with his wife Patricia. With two toddlers at home and a small family loan, Jim and Pat took the dive and left behind employment security along with a much-needed paycheck, to build their own American dream. While Jim’s work and reputation would help them gain a start in the corporate world, they needed to identify whatever work they could to sustain themselves. Chance connected them to an off-the-wall German marketer with a lot of hustle, Harry Geisler.
Highway to Hollywood
Geisler’s company, Factors, needed designs for the T-shirts he was selling out of his car trunk. Fast-forward, a year or so… Geisler managed to purchase the rights to the famous red bathing suit poster of “Farrah Fawcett”. Instantly, he was on the map, and so was Barron Marketing.
This led to new agreements with MGM, which brought Barron assignments for movie posters like Star Wars and Grease, tour books for Andy Gibb, and memorabilia marketing for Elvis Presley. Factors grew quickly… too quickly… and tried to bring their creative service in-house. Unfortunately, their empire, along with the real walls they had built, came tumbling down.
Shortly thereafter, Barron moved on to reconnect with their roots in the corporate world. They began taking off, growing their team and their space, redirecting their creative to corporate players like DuPont, Astra Zeneca, W.L.Gore, and more. Times were good and corporate America was spending large sums of money perfecting their processes and letting their customers know about it. It was a wonderful free training ground for vendors who supported them. The lessons were valuable and offered the opportunity to share these practices with smaller clients. As the business world began the great downsize in the early 90’s, Barron chose to follow a large DuPont spin-off they had been successfully supporting for a number of years. While they provided services for numerous DuPont businesses, two major outdoor consumer products, Stren Fishing Lines and Remington Arms, had engaged Barron as “agency of record,” which required much attention. The high rankings of those products in their marketplaces, at the time, clearly demonstrated that Barron’s marketing efforts had delivered. It was a good time for the firm, the economy was good, and Americans had extra money to spend on leisure! Moving forward, the industry knowledge and experience gained at DuPont, along with the new asset of a “Federal Firearms License” provided a glorious entry into the fun and busy outdoor industry. Barron delivered many marketing services that raised the bar for some of the largest, well known Brands, in the Outdoor Leisure Business.
A New Day
Patricia Barron continues to operate the firm, minus her longtime partner, Jim, who passed suddenly in 2007. She is fully involved with all aspects of the firm and hands-on with day-to-day operations. She also provides marketing consulting services for the firm. As the industry moves and changes, one of Barron’s major strengths, “flexibility,” has allowed them to expand their horizons and gain entry into new markets.
Under Patricia’s watch Barron has successfully marketed industries, such as Education, Research, Health, Finance and more. Barron continues to create and build new brands, provide smart marketing strategies, and find ways to stretch often-impossible budgets. They have tracked, adopted and provided services in the new world of digital communications while retaining the gold standards, which continue to be in demand. Some things, “tried and proven”, never die. They operate with a smart and modern business model allowing them to maintain attractive pricing. Patricia takes great pride in the firm’s reputation. As a longstanding citizen in the State’s Business Community, she has served numerous boards, to which she has generously donated much time and many services. The firm’s first priority has always been the quality of its work. Many years ago, she was featured in a business publication and she spoke about “reputation”, saying that it was everything. When asked how it was earned, she stated “One stripe at a time”.