Behind the Headlines with Guinness World Records’ Jakki Lewis

Jakki Lewis, PR director at Guinness World Records for the EMEA and APAC regions, on helping Ben Stiller break the record for longest selfie stick, her “weird” breakfast selections and gearing up for the launch of Guinness World Records 2017.

Jakki Lewis - Guinness World Records1

Jakki Lewis

Before I reach the office in the morning, I’ve already…
Wished I’d gone to bed earlier, cleared the majority of overnight global office emails, got up to speed with news from Twitter, read the Daily Mail showbiz section and played at least five rounds of Candy Crush.

You’ll mostly find emails about…in my inbox.
It’s incredibly varied as you might imagine. It could be anything from a brand like Jaguar wishing to break the record for the largest loop the loop in a car, the teams at Sport Relief and Virgin Money London Marathon using record breaking to help amplify their good causes, or Paramount Pictures – where we helped actor Ben Stiller break the record for longest selfie stick at the premiere of Zoolander 2.

It’s always great to receive positive feedback too – it’s a real sense of achievement from both sides when a new record has been confirmed, whether it’s from a global brand or from an individual, or animal, with a specific skill.

At the moment we’re working on the grand unveiling of the new 2017 book for September – arguably our pinnacle publicity campaign of the year. As content is king, our global video tour is just about to start filming the most PR-able new records for launch, so I have emails from all over the world from our record holders and crews in China, Germany, Australia and the US to name but a few, which takes some juggling with the time zones.

I know I’ve had a good day if…
The office is buzzing, the hours have flown by, I’ve cleared at least half of my inbox and I’ve had a delivery from Amazon or ASOS.

My first job was…
Working at McDonalds aged 17. I still have scars on my hands from all the burns I got flipping burgers, but I had such a fun time (even when I got locked in the chiller for two hours) and I met one of my greatest friends today there.

I can tell a campaign is succeeding when…
One of my parents tells me they’ve seen or heard something about what I’ve been working on. Particular proud moments were when my mother told me how much she liked the news reports of Otto the skateboarding bulldog and our recent announcement about the new oldest man in the world which both made global headlines. Both were such lovely positive stories that made people smile all over the world.

I eat…when nobody is watching.
When I was at Sky, my colleagues used to have a long-running joke about the weird stuff I eat for breakfast. Steak, salad, tins of sweetcorn – anything goes. Thankfully no-one at Guinness World Records has cottoned on yet, but I do love Pret’s Duck and Hoi-Sin sauce wraps first thing in the morning.

The first time I pitched to a journalist…
Was for a comic book strip feature about Scooby Doo for The Funday Times when I worked at Cartoon Network. I had to dress up as Daphne with half of the pop band S Club 7 and pose for photos because the model they booked bailed on the day.

The worst thing anyone has said to me is…
I’ve been called most things. You get used to it if you work in TV. I can’t repeat what Katie Price and Robbie Savage called me.

The last book I read was…
Wildflower by Drew Barrymore. I’d love to say I read something hugely intellectual, but the fact is that when I read I want to be completely wrapped up in something else. I also think Kindles are a sacrilege. I’ll always prefer the feel and smell of a real book.

I’ve never really understood why…
Some people hate Uber. Uber is the greatest invention ever and it rocks.

If I could go back and talk to my 10-year-old self, I’d say…
Don’t take yourself too seriously, learn the art of diplomacy and try to treat others the way you would like to be treated.

This time next year, I’ll be…
Counting my blessings I made the right choices.

Fancy featuring in a Behind the Headlines interview? Did you work with the other half of S Club 7? Please email

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