What we do and how we got there

Having spent 20+ years helping businesses find their way with words, I’ve experienced the world of comms from different sides of the table. From news reporting to magazine writing and from agency work to creative tech, I’ve worked with entrepreneurs, business owners, charities, and celebs.

I feel incredibly lucky that I’ve had the opportunity and pleasure to work with movers and shakers as well as everyday good people. I tell their stories, so they can connect with their audience and customers on a deeper level and grow with purpose.

It all began when freshly graduated with a degree in Journalism, I took on a job with a creative communications agency in Rotterdam called Chapeau. Back in 2001, I had envisaged a career with National Geographic or The Observer or something, but I fell in love with writing for business.


Fun and excitement while learning the trade

We made the move to New Zealand in 2004, and my first job here was as a photojournalist with ReserveGroup, a tourism marketing company that created websites and tech solutions for accommodation providers and action activities.

My first assignment was for Volcanic Air Safaris, and it started with a helicopter flight to Whakaari White Island. I walked around the moon-like landscape, just me and my camera, to capture the incredible scenery. Since the fatal explosive volcanic eruption at 2:11pm on Monday, 9 December 2019, the island is understandably closed to the public. I am grateful for the experience to discover it in such a unique way 14 years earlier.

In the next few years, I was given the opportunity to take part in practically every action activity there was to be found in NZ at the time. I travelled around the country, jumped off cliffs and tall buildings, abseiled in caves, and there was that trip to Bora Bora where I swam with sharks and stingrays. That was fun!

From News to Comms and back again

After a few years and as the company grew fast, I moved into to the role of studio manager and learned how to build and manage websites, deal with clients, and lead a creative team. Then before I knew it, I was back in the newsroom and became the online editor for the regional newspaper in 2010, taking their website to new heights.

That was a hectic, crazy time being on call 24/7, with lots of breaking news – robberies, crashes, brawls and then the MV Rena split in half and spilled all that oil and other crap off the coast of Tauranga in 2011.

It’s fair to say I learned a lot during my time at the Bay of Plenty Times and NZ Herald and the fast pace was okay with me, but after a while I realised that working in the news, at least in the New Zealand media landscape, was not for me. That’s why in 2013, the time was right to sit at the head of my own table.

I started Sweet Orange as a one-woman band/freelance copywriter, writing brand stories and sponsored content for local business, and SEO copy for websites. I took on a few jobs on payroll here and there on the side – in market research, business development plus covering arts and entertainment stories and community news, to top up the income.

Positioned right where we’re meant to be

In 2019, it was time to step things up and grow Sweet Orange into the writing agency it deserved to be, and that’s an ongoing process. With a handful of other talented writers who work with me as contractors, I write for digital and print, specialising in corporate journalism, brand communications, and optimised website content.

Together, we combine journalism techniques with brand messaging and audience-focused writing to create one well-structured read after another. We’re never pretentious, don’t write fluff, and tell it like it is. We’re insightful, articulate and precise but our real superpower is customer service. We love what we do, but especially who we do it for.. The lines at Sweet Orange HQ are always open. 

You don’t pay us by the hour or per word. For clarity and full transparency, we offer all our writing services at a fixed price. The ability to work in many different markets and across different time zones gives us a leading edge. If your goal is to influence and inspire with words, we’ll get you the results you need.

~ by Martine Pierhagen, content creator and founder of Sweet Orange Ltd

If you are looking for someone to tell your story, need website copy that stands out or well-written articles to build your profile, reputation and relationships, Sweet Orange is here to make it happen. Call 021 492040 or email Sweet Orange today to book in a 30-minute free discovery call.