7 min read
Can you believe this is the 6th People of Marketing Podcast episode? 6th!!! I can’t believe it. Then again, you might not be as invested in this as I am.
Kenny Gold is today’s guest and you will absolutely love this one. Kenny is currently the Director of Social Media at Grey for the North America region.
Don’t ever be afraid to be let go
I always like these stories. Tales of incredibly successful people having gone through very low points in their careers at some point make me feel and think positively.
“The company that I was working within DC was actually the company that I came to New York working for. At the time I was really looking to diversify my skillset. I sort of took for granted the culture and the nature of that work environment. I left to go to a more of an up and coming social-first agency. Within two or three months of being there, I was let go.
It was because they had lost the client and they were some layoffs. At the time I’m in my early twenties and I’m devastated. Where’s my next paycheck coming from? What does this mean for my career? How does it help the narrative? Looking back on it, it was a massive moment in my career and it was a seminal moment because a taught me never to take any role for granted.
And really understand that as stressful as this industry can be, it’s a privilege. It taught me to really always be focused on what value you bring to the organization you are in so that you are constantly that critical cog of what’s happening in the organization. When I mentor up and coming advertising students or I talk to members of my team, I always have that thought of ‘don’t be afraid to be let go’ because it will help you frame whatever comes next and you’ll rise out of that moment and become even better and stronger.”
I think these stories help any of us a lot. They are a reminder that most of our troubles aren’t as important as they seem. It helps us see the big picture every once in a while and look at life with just a bit less gravity.
Understand what’s going on in the world so that we can find those white spaces for our brands to live in
All marketers get asked this, how do you stay up to speed? How are you connected with the world? Because the thing about marketers is that they not only have to keep tabs on their own industry but on the world as well. We market to people and people go through trends.
“I try to add a little bit of structure to the bookends of my day. So I tend to respond to emails between 9 and 10 and between 6 and 8. I like to use the middle of my day to walk around the office. Connect with different team members. Go visit the strategy department, go visit the account teams, go visit my creative partners, go to the production teams and just hear what’s going on and understand what briefs are alive and where can we make the most impact here at grey.
Everything is about being famously effective. It is all about how do we create work that lives at the center of culture and behavior. In order to do that, we have to be on Twitter, seeing what’s going on in the world, reading Buzzfeed, going on YouTube and TikTok watching live streams on Twitch, understanding what is going on out in the world so that we can find those white spaces for our brands to live in.
In a typical day, it could be a conversation with a creative director about the latest updates to the map on Fortnight, so that they can understand how to leverage that to come up with an idea for a brand, all the way to discussing the rights for a YouTube creator with an account team member so that we can see how they’re going to help support an up and coming campaign.
For me, it’s about being accessible to the teams around me. I don’t do it alone. I have an incredible team of brilliant content strategists and content creators who are far smarter than I am who are in the trenches every single day with the brands that we work with.
The ethos for the team is to be accessible, to be a part of every brief, and to help make the work just a little bit better. That’s really what a typical day looks like. We do a lot of brainstorming. We do a lot of content consumption. We’ll do a lot of education. We do a lot of learning.
So those are some big components. We also spend a lot of time talking to our friends over at each of the individual social channels and talking to our representatives there so we can understand shifts in how the platform is living and breathing with each of the consumers. ”
I found this part really captivating because it’s already the second time in 6 episodes I hear about this habit from an executive. Rodrigo, ESL’s CMO, also spoke about the routine of going around the office and talking to people. The simple cross-team, cross-department networking seems invaluable. Are you doing it? Or are you one of those people who walks into the office with their sunglasses still on?
Being in charge doesn’t mean being an a**hole
It seems like a simple one, doesn’t it? Unfortunately, it is something most of us have to learn at some point in our lives rather than knowing it from the start.
“Being in charge doesn’t mean being an asshole.
And advertising isn’t a hospital. We’re not saving lives. So let’s chill. Let’s just take a deep breath and enjoy the fact that we get to have fun like this for a living.”
I loved these two lessons so much, I want to get them tattooed! The part about generally being a nice human being regardless of your role is just something so many people still have yet to learn.
As for advertising not being a hospital? It was such a great thing to hear out loud. I believe generally too many professionals take themselves way too seriously. I’m all for hard work, strict objectives, and aiming high. But taking ourselves too seriously leads to unnecessary stress. Which guess what?! Affects productivity and ultimately results.
Ok, I’ve done my part. Time for you to tune in and listen to the entire episode. And see you next week!