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How I built my business: Yellow Rabbit PR & Marketing

One of my favorite sayings is, “If you want to make God laugh, tell him the plans you have for yourself.” 

I love it not only because it has proven to be repeatedly accurate, but also because embracing it has allowed me to be more accepting of life’s challenges and redirections. 

One of those redirections led me to become an entrepreneur in 2019 and launch Yellow Rabbit PR & Marketing, a Biloxi-based communications agency. 

A few years earlier, I worked as the director of communications at a university in Georgia. The job was demanding, but it allowed me to work alongside many hardworking, passionate and genuine people who embraced me, my talents and the vision I had for my role. 

But as I soared, my husband found himself professionally frustrated and at his wit’s end as a veteran K-12 teacher. The school where he worked wasn’t a good fit, and he desperately wanted to return to Mississippi. I was crushed. Reluctantly, I agreed to relocate back to our home state, but with one caveat: Instead of central Mississippi, we would move to the Gulf Coast for a fresh start.

Business opportunities bloomed as my roots became deeper, and my side hustle became my full-time job. It has been organic, exhilarating and a learning process.

As our relocation date drew nearer, he quickly found a teaching job. At the same time, I was hearing crickets while seeking posts at higher education institutions. So, I expanded my search to include general communication jobs and landed a position with a Biloxi-based nonprofit. It was passionate, vital policy work, and I was proud to elevate and amplify the organization’s agenda in our state. But after two years, I also began to experience a gnawing desire for more. I wanted to launch my own business to work in the spaces where I knew I could make an even greater impact. 

I transitioned to another nonprofit, an upstart, with the understanding that I also planned to launch my firm. By day, I worked tirelessly building the nonprofit’s brand and helped it thrive and grow into a multi-million-dollar organization. On nights and weekends, I poured myself into creating Yellow Rabbit PR & Marketing. It was exhausting, with hardly any free time, but my day job allowed me the resources to grow my side hustle. 

Early on, I learned some hard lessons about entrepreneurship. I thought having a wealth of knowledge and experience in communications would magically result in new clients, but it was a daily grind. I had to embrace living along the Coast and become immersed in the fabric of the community. I had to network and get out to meet new people because they want to know you before spending money with you. 

I learned it is important to show up for others without always having your own agenda. Business opportunities bloomed as my roots became deeper, and my side hustle became my full-time job. It has been organic, exhilarating and a learning process. 

To others considering launching a business, I’d advise you to do your homework on matters like business structuring, legal requirements, accounting practices and writing a business plan. Don’t be afraid to side hustle at first. 

Also build a strong support team of professionals early on instead of always seeking to DIY critical steps that cause problems down the line. And finally, practice a good work/life balance. Being a business owner can be all-consuming, but you must make your family and other vital relationships a priority because they are what make your life worth living. 

Pamela Berry-Johnson is the owner of Yellow Rabbit PR & Marketing. She can be reached at or (601) 557-2299. 

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