We had the good fortune of connecting with Kwame Corbett and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Kwame, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
When I founded Pyro Media Network there was two main objectives in my mind. 1) I wanted to be able to have control over my creative content and a safe space to produce it. In turn, I wanted to provide that for other creatives as well. 2) I felt that we don’t have a lot of spaces that are for people of color to freely create and develop. So, I wanted to be another option for black and brown creatives to express their content and flourish.
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
I am the founder and Executive Producer of a digital media and marketing company called Pyro Media Network (PMN). Pyro Media Network is a black owned business focused on providing a safe space for creatives and entrepreneurs. We have helped companies, businesses, and brands navigate the biggest communication shift in over 500 years, social media/internet. Helping brands meet their goals and connecting them with their target audience. PMN is dedicated to helping build brands that provide representation and inclusiveness through digital content creation and brand strategy. In 2016, the Blaze Entertainment Podcast launched its first episode. With the development and success of Blaze Entertainment Podcast, I decided that we needed to expand to accommodate the increasing podcast consultations and collaboration requests. Thus, establishing Pyro Media Network (PMN) in 2017 and Blaze Entertainment becoming the first official podcast on the network. Today PMN has reached over 670,000 audience members internationally, produced over 40 successful shows with high ratings and listenership, and manages over 57 content creators and creations. What I am most proud of at this point with Pyro is that we have a diverse team of experts and highly skilled staff who are dedicated to growing the company and meeting its mission. Additionally, our focus has shifted in regard to really digging deep to help small to medium sized businesses and brands grow tremendously and gain their own “brand identity” so they can flourish. Starting is a business is never easy. You have to put a lot of time, energy, and sometimes capitol into it. I always tell my clients that your business is you baby. You are giving birth to an idea and nurturing it. Parents are not perfect and the same can be said about entrepreneurs. I have made several mistakes along the way. But I think the difference with Pyro Media compared to some of my other businesses I started in the past is that I ensured that my personal life and circumstances didn’t affect it. I completely focused more on the foundation and protection of the company growth. And more so… I never gave up after a glitch. I never stopped working after a “no”. I looked at no’s not as a roadblock, but as another opportunity to strive for a yes. Some of the major things I have learned and implement on a continuous basis in this journey with PMN are; 1) stay consistent in your mission. Regardless of roadblocks, circumstance, or anything. I think most people end their dreams so quickly because of one or two no’s. And I believe it is important to be steadfast, focused, and determined. I want the world to know that there are more voices, perspectives, thought forms, and cultures out there than their own. Pyro stands for protecting and providing a space for those voices to be heard and for creatives of all kinds flourish. We want to light that fire in those who have been told no multiple times or had the door slammed on them. We need to give these brilliant minds an opportunity to make a mark on the work. But you have got to put in the work.
Any great local spots you’d like to shoutout?
If my best friend was visiting the area and I wanted to show them the best time ever I would first take them to the Griffith observatory. One of my absolute favorite places in Los Angeles. I would also take them to Universal Studios but that is an all-day event! My first time ever going was this past year in January for my birthday. Such a fun time and I appreciated the lack of waiting in lines as opposed to Disneyland. Maybe I just went on a good day. Of course, I would have to take them to Hollywood because everyone who comes to LA wants to go there and it’s a must. I would also take them to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. One of my personal things to do is going on road trips. I love blasting music and watching the world from the comfort of my vehicle. With that said I love to drive down pacific highway in Santa Monica. You get to see all the beautiful beaches, beach houses, and natural structures and then loop back around. There are plenty of opportunities to pull over and take pictures. And one of the best places to eat and shop in my opinion is The Grove. I love just hanging out there when I have the opportunity the energy is chill and the assortment of food in the food court area is plentiful.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
There are many people who have come in and out of my life at different seasons and some who are still present in my life. But I feel Pyro Media’s process and business structure is based off of a movie called “The Peaceful Warrior” which was based off the memoir by Dan Millman. One of the major quotes in that film was “…it’s the journey that makes us happy, not the destination…”. This movie/book changed my outlook on life because we often as humans focus so much on the end goal or the final destination that we forget to live in the moment and enjoy the process. This is a fundamental focus in my brand strategy when it comes to helping developing businesses and brands. I want people to see the growth and journey of my clients and not just the end goal. This helps audiences connect with our clients better and makes their journey relatable. Pyro Media has flourished since its inception, but I am constantly reminded of our beginnings. It keeps me and our team humble and grateful for what we have currently and where we are going as a company.
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