The only thing I do differently is use reels that are designed for saltwater. They'll hold up much longer. I like to use low profile baitcasters that don't look that much different than bass reels, but they stand up to the wear and tear. I prefer a medium rod in the 7-8 foot range. The Falcon Gulf Caster is an excellent choice. These combos will throw and land every red, speck, or drum you run into until you get into the 15-20 lb range, even then you can land 30 pounders if you are skilled enough.
I'm not a chick.