The #LifeinSMM panel was an eye-opening experience, it had blood and guts, cargo shorts,
whiskey tastings and late-night trips to the bathroom. All just topics of discussion of course but
interesting none the less. The panel of experts gave the audience of aspiring marketers a look
at what it’s like to work in social media marketing from a variety of perspectives.
Bilal Kaiser @AgencyGuacamole
Ashley Dinielli – Social Media Manager @UCLAHealth
George Laboda – Influencer & Content Creator @GentsLounge
Chris Baccus – Head of Digital & Social at Caruso Group @TheGroveLA
AJ Feuerman – PR & Social Media @GravitasVentures
Here are my 7 fav takeaways:
1) Collaboration is more important
Ashley Dinelli kicked us off with this bold statement “strategy and viral are dirty words”.
Instead, she said collaboration is more important and effective while working in social media.
She pointed out UCLA Health’s partnership with the LA Lakers and how successful that was in generating engaging content for UCLA Health. So, focus on building strong partnerships rather than “how can we go viral?”.
2) Always be 2 weeks ahead
George Laboda highlighted the importance of being ahead of the curve when it comes to social media content. He operates his channels 2 weeks ahead, not only does this give you a buffer if other events come up but you can also think more strategically (I know, dirty word) as you go.
3) “Do not work in entertainment”
“It sounds glamorous, but it sucks!” the wise words from AJ Feuerman. She explained that
it’s not just tweeting and posting photos, it’s a really hard work. A regular week for her is 60-70
hours, working on 6-20 different independent films at any given time. Constantly being in the
loop and on your phone is a must, even during late night toilet breaks.
4) “I love blood and guts”
When your job requires you to live tweet a gruesome surgery in an operating theater you need to able to keep your cool and stay conscious. Ashley Dinielli highlighted the importance of being passionate about what you do and the subject matter you are working with otherwise
you won’t survive. Ashley has always been interested in health care and loves being in the OR so UCLA Heath was a perfect fit. A career highlight was live streaming a patient playing guitar while undergoing brain surgery.
5) “Just fell into it”
I found it interesting hearing about the diverse paths the panel members took to reach their
current roles in social media marketing. George Laboda started out as a video editor and his
content creation skill led him into the influencer world. Ashley was an aspiring doctor before
working with UCLA Health. This highlights that there is no set formula or path to getting a job
in the industry.
6) “You are also interviewing them”
When it comes to job interviews the panel gave the age-old tips, dress well, do your research,
no drunk solo cup profile pics but also added that “you are also interviewing them”. AJ recounted the times she wished she had taken a moment in interviews to ask if the job was right for her. Are the staff happy and smiling? Is it a positive environment?
7) You can wear cargo shorts if they are tailored correctly
Finally, as an ex-cargo short consumer, I was pleased to hear from men’s fashion influencer
George Laboda (with over 500k Followers) as long as they are tailored correctly you are good
So go forth wear cargo shorts, work 70 hour weeks, remove that drunk profile pic and you too
can be a social media professional.
Finally, i wabt to thanks the Panel for this great night.