A New Girl's Observations--Why I Came to Curator

I’m the most recent addition to the Curator family, which means I’ve spent the past few months throwing my shoulder into a job search. Coming from the New York City agency world and a newly minted Seattleite, I was looking for a firm with an awesome leadership team, innovative thinking, and a balanced culture. Curator PR stood out among a sea of other communication-based firms on the west coast. I’d like to share some shining reasons along with observations from my first days at the office.

The Curator Family

In the first line of this post, I originally wrote that I was the newest addition to the “team,” but that didn’t feel right. The people at Curator are like no others, putting company culture high on the priority list. It’s refreshing to find a team with unique traditions (i.e. Morning Coffee and what’s expected to be a new favorite, The Bachelor Bracket), collaborative nine to five music playlists, and even shared Pinterest boards! It’s clear that I work with a group that cares for one another beyond the workday. Their high level of integrity and genuine respect for each other makes life at the office feel like home (or as close as you can get).  

Thinking Wider

Curator is a non-traditional PR firm. What does that mean? Curator wants to be able to help its clients curate and participate in every conversation from brand to consumer, and vice versa. Instead of siloing the conversation in traditional media, Curator expands its practice to social media, experiential events, mobile, and digital programs. And if that conversation needs creative, Curator can design it! Being non-traditional means the people here don’t just think outside the box, but bust it open, unhinge the sides, and make an origami horse out of it. Sometimes, that’s what it takes to connect with the people that Curator clients care about more effectively than the rest.

Small AND Structured

I’ve had experience at small companies, large, and those in between. What I’ve learned thus far is that small companies tend to lack the consistent processes and training programs that large companies offer. Curator PR flipped that assumption on its head. Within two days of walking in the door, I accepted calendar invitations to bi-monthly training meetings in addition to a team huddle to discuss the 2013 vision of the company. I ate my heart out! It’s refreshing to find an organization that cares about developing young professionals, especially since I fall into the category.

They’ve Got the Moves

PR is stressful. Curator’s own Megan recently shared an article with the team about how high PR Executives rank among stressful jobs. Our industry is pretty close to the top, but you wouldn’t know it if you stepped onto the 6th floor of 419 Occidental. On my first day, I got to experience my colleagues handle a critical piece of communication for one of our clients with as much swagger and coolness as Mick Jagger.

Hard Hitting Suite of Clients

If you’ve scanned the website, you already know this, but for a three-year-old company to be working with some of the most well known brands, nationally and regionally, it’s outstanding. Enough said!

Focused on Lifestyle

There are thousands of books written about the positive correlation between success and disciplined focus. One of my favorites called Good To Great by Jim Collins proposes the idea that by finding a balance of what you’re passionate about, what you’re good at, and what you can be better at than anyone else in the market will bring lasting greatness. Scott told me about his vision for Curator to be the premier lifestyle agency in the country. He explained the caliber of work he wants to target and his commitment to expand when it’s rooted in passion instead of for growth’s sake. I recognized it as that sweet combination for success. In a world where excellence is measured by being bigger, more profitable, and quicker to do so, Curator stands apart with values that clients, partners, and employees can really count on.

 To sum it all up, I’m honored to hold up the “new girl” sign, which probably seems pretty obvious after this post. So, here’s to the next chapter with these crazy awesome people called Curators. 

Instagram Takeover

Ever since I discovered the true beauty of a photograph, I have become a relentless photographer; desiring to capture every second, no matter what the occasion. The fact that a moment in time can be forever seized in a 3x5, 4x6 or 5x7 snapshot is quite amazing to me.  With the wide array of cameras, picture-devoted social media networks and built-in camera phones on the market, it’s easy to see that I am not the only one with a picture addiction. The world has a deep obsession with photography, which explains the increasing popularity of the “fun and quirky” smartphone application, connecting users through pictures.

In fact, lately it seems that Instagram is taking over the social media world. This application has over 100 million users and the number continues to grow. It’s completely free to the user and turns simple images into creative masterpieces.

Individuals are not the only ones Instagramming. Several noted brands have jumped on the Instagram bandwagon. Companies are using it as yet another social media tool to promote their brands, campaigns and connect with the public. Instagrammers can follow big brand names including, Victoria’s Secret, Audi and Starbucks to keep up with the latest happenings.

What are some of the ways that companies are building relationships with consumers through instagram? According to the Social Media Examiner, this is how brands are utilizing the application:

 Brand Showcasing:  Instagrammers get a firsthand look at everything brand-related, from new product releases to inside looks at different store locations across the country.

 Sneak Previews: Followers can feel special and their loyalty is rewarded with exclusive previews of unreleased products. To have their hands on something before the general public gives them a sense of exclusivity and helps generate buzz around the public launch.   

 Behind the Scenes look: Companies on Instagram are taking consumers behind the scenes to see where and how products are made. Some brands like Starbucks are even introducing their employees, allowing followers to see the faces behind the brand.

 Tagging: Large audiences can be reached and tracked by the use of hashtags for photos.  Brands that are promoting a product, campaign or just the company brand events can utilize hashtags to engage followers and also track the engagement when users use the tag in return. 

For now, Instagram seems to be dominating the photography-focused social media scene, but what will be the next popular social networking creation? Only time will tell.