Eske van Egerschot-Montoya Martinez | Innovator 25 EMEA 2021

Eske van Egerschot-Montoya Martinez

Director Communications Corporate & Public Affairs

Hill + Knowlton Strategies


Innovation is taking the status quo to the next level and breaking any pattern in thinking, behaving and executing."

Eske van Egerschot-Montoya Martinez, Hill + Knowlton Strategies' director of communications, corporate and public affairs in the Netherlands, well knows the disconnect between organizations wanting to engage and stakeholders who simply don’t have the time. So, in 2020, she created H+K VR Tours, an innovative  virtual reality offering aimed at closing that gap. Custom-designed for clients, VR Tours offers users a highly-detailed look around an organization’s office, lab, or campus. Seen with a company-supplied cardboard headset, tours can even include CEO or other leaders showing users – from investors to employees – around, and enables them to break away from the pack and explore the wilds on their own. Van Egerschot-Montoya Martinez, a former Ducth MP who started her career as a lawyer, is also leading the way on diversity in the Dutch comms industry, as a member of H+K's global DE&I council. 

How would you describe the communications/PR industry's level of innovation compared to other marketing disciplines?
More innovative.

Do you think the global pandemic has made the industry more innovative?

Where is the PR industry's greatest opportunity for taking the lead on innovation?
Diversity, equity and inclusion.

Who most influences how innovative a brand's engagement is?
Communications/PR agency

How do you define innovation?
Taking status quo to the next level and breaking any pattern in thinking, behaving and executing.

What is the most innovative comms/marketing initiative you've seen in the last 12 months?
SpaceX Inspiration 4.

In your opinion, what brands and/or agencies are most innovative around PR and marketing?
Ogilvy and AKQA.

Describe a moment in your career that you would consider 'innovative.'
Becoming member of parliament at the age of 26 as a woman was definitely "Taking the status quo to the next level and breaking any pattern in thinking, behaving and executing."

Who do you admire for his/her approach to innovation? 
Elon Musk for breaking all the rules and surrounding himself with talent of all walks of life.

How do you get out of a creativity rut?
By grabbing a book and reading about people who were/are not afraid and knew in their gut that they were meant for greater things.

What advice would you give to the PR industry around embracing innovation?
It is the only item you need in your survival kit.

What would you be doing if you weren't doing your current job?
Leading an organization that helps people, who just need one shot/break, to get the job of their dreams by offering them education, income, mental and physical support.

Which book/movie/TV show/podcast/playlist/other cultural source has helped you get through this year or provided inspiration?
Brene Brown's Unlocking Us: best Southern humour ever and great useful insights for anyone really.

What's your favourite time of day and why?
The morning at 5am before the rest of the world wakes up. That gives me the chance to read my books in full peace and quiet.