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Nicole Dunn, Founder of Top Health & Wellness PR Firm, Wants a Better Future for Women

Nicole Dunn, Founder of Top Health & Wellness PR Firm, Wants a Better Future for Women

After a 14-year career in TV, Dunn pivoted and founded Dunn Pellier Media, growing it into one of the top PR firms in fitness

In the public relations space, some are built with a natural passion or skill-set for the work, much like you’d say someone is a natural “go-getter” or “people person.” Nicole Dunn, CEO of Dunn Pellier Media, is all of the above.

Dunn Pellier Media has worked with top brands such as F45 Training, Les Mills, Orangetheory Fitness, and Club Pilates, establishing itself as one of the top public relations firms in fitness. But while Dunn has always had the personal tools to build a top agency, getting to this point still took determination and savvy, especially in her early days coming from another industry.

Grinding to the Top

Before starting Dunn Pellier Media, Dunn spent 14 years working in television, at one point helping to produce a Dr. Phil spin-off series called “Decision House.” She led a 50+ member team, overseeing all aspects of production from talent and guest bookings to writing scripts.

“The demands were intense, often stretching into 16-hour workdays,” Dunn recalled. “Amidst the competitive landscape, particularly dominated by men, I started to question what I was doing and how hard I worked for someone else.”

That questioning eventually led her to create Dunn Pellier Media. After receiving guidance from a business coach and an all-female “mastermind” group in Los Angeles, she went on to launch the PR agency. 

“Initially, I was hesitant to leave television, but I realized that with the versatility of my skill set in producing television and the potential for crossover into public relations, that it would work,” she said. “Encouraged by my mastermind group and my husband’s collective wisdom, I leaped.”

Amid that leap, she had an inspiring and helpful partner beside her in Tony Horton. The P90X star became one of Dunn’s first clients and was instrumental in helping her interest in fitness blossom into a true passion. 

“Witnessing the profound personal transformations sparked by his workouts ignited a fire within me,” said Dunn. “In our early days, Tony challenged me to reevaluate my fitness regimen, bluntly dismissing that my ‘daily dog walks’ just didn’t make the fitness cut. His insistence and encouragement to create a workout routine was a pivotal moment that marked a profound shift in my lifestyle and my future career.”

As their partnership grew, potential clients started flocking to Dunn Pellier Media, hoping to replicate the success enjoyed by Horton. From there, a thriving business unfolded, eventually growing to expand its portfolio beyond personalities and feature a wider spectrum of health and wellness organizations. 

Dunn Pellier Media has worked with top fitness brands including Orangetheory (credit: Orangetheory Fitness)

Separation from the Pack

Besides its impressive client list, Dunn Pellier Media also distinguished itself from multiple competitors in the public relations arena. Working to be a “dedicated health partner” rather than just manning the PR department for its clients, DPM crafts and molds wellness narratives with impactful storytelling. 

The agency’s extensive experience and notable relationships across the industry also make a difference. Along with industry giants like Orangetheory and Club Pilates, Dunn Pellier Media also works with Bulldog Yoga, MyNetDiary and Essentia Mattress. 

“We have deep-rooted relationships with both the media and the wellness marketplace,” said Dunn. “For 17 years we have attended almost all fitness, wellness, and biohacking conferences to meet our community and make ourselves a part of this community.”

Dunn Pellier Media secured a nationally televised spot for Club Pilates (credit: Club Pilates/YouTube)

Those relationship-building skills trickle down from the top. 

“One of my greatest strengths lies in my ability to connect with people — a trait that has been evident since childhood, as my father often noted my natural gift for conversation,” Dunn said. “I’ve always been genuinely intrigued by people, eager to find out what drives them while learning about their passions. This innate curiosity serves as a significant advantage for our company, as it enables me to forge meaningful connections and foster growth opportunities in the fitness and wellness space.”

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Additionally, Dunn Pellier Media’s specific focus on public relations in the health and wellness sector helps differentiate it from the pack. Few, if any, other companies stand so equipped on both the fitness and PR front. 

“What sets us apart is our genuine integration within the wellness community, a distinction few firms can claim,” said Dunn. “We’ve cultivated deep-rooted relationships and solid expertise in promoting fitness, health, and wellness brands.”

The Future of DPM & More 

Dunn sees merging Dunn Pellier Media with a prominent PR firm in need of DPM’s distinct health and wellness expertise as something to strive for in the long term future. 

“By joining forces with a much larger firm, we aim to bring our unique perspective and specialized knowledge to a broader audience, further solidifying our position as leaders in wellness-focused public relations,” she said. “Together, we can amplify our impact and offer clients a comprehensive suite of services that seamlessly blend expertise, community, and authenticity.”

However, a more immediate goal involves combating gender discrimination in health and wellness. In the current calendar year, Dunn mentioned an intent to address the disparity in funding for research into women’s health. 

With help from the Goldman Sachs 10K Small Business Program, from which Dunn recently graduated, she plans to launch an online platform that will fill the gap in research and data for women aged 45 years and older. The project is still in its development phase, as Dunn noted she’s currently preparing a pitch deck to engage leading female funders invested in women’s health to have them help support the platform. 

“We can’t improve what we don’t measure, and this platform brings the data and research together for better health outcomes and reducing the cost of disease for women,” Dunn said. “We have been left out of critical health and wellness research studies and that needs to change!”

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