Hey guys! After posting my first blog entry about what a Social Media Manager does, I decided to get more input on topics people wanted to hear about. A lot of the answers were general questions about my personal experience in marketing, so I thought I would answer some of those more in depth now before I get into my more informational content.
"What is Vaughan Media Group?"
VMG is a project I started in 2017 when I noticed the difficulties that freelancers like myself had when it came to building client relationships and negotiating money. I decided to start actively seeking creative projects where I could bring together a team of creatives or business owners with a common goal - while easing the negotiation process. Some projects require less collaboration, so I and my graphic designer Dylan work on those, while larger projects dip into our network of professional artists, influencers, photographers and local businesses. We take projects ranging from Social Media Marketing to Promotional Event Planning to Digital and Graphic Design. Strategizing how to drive traffic to a point of sale or landing page is like a fun puzzle to us! Our main focus is Consulting right now, because we want to deliver the tools all business owners need to grow in this fast-paced market. Strategizing how to drive traffic to a point of sale or landing page is like a fun puzzle to us!
"How did you get into marketing?"
I don't remember when I first decided to pursue marketing - I actually got my BA in Psychology - Consumer Behavior, and was planning towards a master's degree when I landed a Marketing and Sales internship in New York. I applied on a whim one night when I was dreaming about places I wanted to go and was so surprised when I received an answer! After a few phone interviews I found myself on Fashion Ave working for a summer-wear showroom learning all about marketing, manufacturing, merchandising and buying. Everyday was so interesting, and I loved the combination of creativity and psychology that played such a key role in the industry. When my internship was over, I decided to extend my visa in America so that I could continue to expand my network in the marketing industry using the tools I'd learned in NY - and the rest is history!
"What has been your favorite project?"
I've worked a little bit in a variety of industries, like hospitality or sustainable products, but my favorite project was in fashion. Last year Solkissed x Girlfriend Box were planning an influencer campaign in Hawai'i - where I was based at the time. Collaborating with the owner - Ale Boggiano - I worked onsite to make sure the headquarters were arranged for the arrival of the team, while coordinating my own team of business affiliates, hair-stylists, make-up artists and photographers for the main photo shoot. Everything was fun about this project - from the beautiful content, the amazing team of girls, as well as my first time modelling for a campaign! It brought me so much joy to see the final product come together so beautifully and successfully.
"What are the most difficult parts of freelancing or owning a business?"
The inconsistency of work when you are starting out is definitely one of the hardest things to get used to. When your portfolio is still growing, you're in between projects and you're competing with larger players in your industry, it is easy to get discouraged. To deal with that, I've built a lot of patience. I try to do at least one thing a day that puts me ahead of yesterday. You don't want to wake up in a position further away from your goals!
Another thing I find surprisingly prevalent is sexism and agism. I could go on to describe a million examples, but my best advice is to approach every situation with confidence and conviction. Your age doesn't matter, your gender doesn't matter, your race doesn't matter - you are in your position because you earned it and you are valuable!
"Do you get free stuff?"
Sometimes. It depends on what type of project I'm working on. Often product photography leads to free items - when I was managing social media for a few restaurants in Waikiki, the perk was getting to eat all of the delicious food afterwards with Dylan. I've also done work trades, where I will create online content for a brand in exchange for product or discounts. I recently started with a great online tool for influencers who are just starting out, or people who are less serious about blogging - but I will write more about tools for bloggers later!
Overall, my experience in marketing has been so inspiring, and has caused so much growth - I've been able to work in industries I never expected! I'm really excited to share more info on all of this soon. Thanks for reading!