The beauty industry is currently in a huge period of change. The explosion of blogs and digital influencers has lead to not only a huge change in the roles of traditional PRs, but for whole new categories within marketing departments to be established. From my experience it’s always the passionate, enthusiastic and embrasive individuals that are able to carve out a niche for themselves and really make waves internally – but no individual best sums that up than one of the loveliest ladies I’ve ever had the pleasure of working with. I’ve known Charlotte Jones for a number of years, and she’s always believed in the potential of the bloggersphere wholeheartedly; she was one of the first to adopt collaborative influencer campaigns and spent her days gathering a portfolio of evidence to back up her beliefs. If you’ve ever questioned your ability to carve out a niche or create a job role that you’d be happy to get out of bed for every Monday, then let her inspire you.
TELL US A LITTLE ABOUT YOURSELF
You’ll usually find me colouring my hair or sipping green tea. As well as being a full-time mermaid, I currently devise all social media initiatives and manage influencer campaigns/partnerships at L’Oréal Paris UK; my aim is to create compelling content via influencer campaigns. I’ve been trying to make brands aware of bloggers and their influence for a while and I’ve finally seen a change in the media landscape that is just SO exciting!
HOW DID YOU GET YOUR JOB?
I started in the industry blogging for More! Magazine whilst I was at university. This gave me the opportunity to work with the fashion and beauty team, until the magazine suddenly closed down. My dream job was literally no more! I freelanced at magazines for a while until I noticed a change in the industry; magazines were (and still are) in decline. I knew at that point digital and social was the future but this type of job wasn’t available at the time. I fell into PR through someone I met working in the magazine industry… This is why it’s SO important to build your little black book of contacts: be nice to everyone because you never know where they will end up or what they can do for you. I loved PR but I yearned for learning digital, so I created my own role whilst I was working in a PR agency – which lead to setting up the digital division at Beauty Seen PR, a fabulous agency in the heart of London. I was Digital Manager for Talent, which involved managing influencer partnerships but also social media management. I’m now at L’Oréal Paris doing a very similar role and I love it! I also love the blogosphere and I’m passionate about content (which is why I’ve recently set up my own v/blog – such a plug!) I understand the need of bloggers and expectations of brands. It’s important to have a wider knowledge of the role you’re working in. My advice to anyone is if you believe in something, believe in yourself and make it happen!
CAN YOU DESCRIBE A ‘TYPICAL’ DAY?
There really is no typical day in this industry and that’s why I love it; there’s a new idea or campaign to start. A typical day would include looking at social media every morning to find out what’s trending or if there’s content I need to tap into. I read emails on my way to work and reply to flagged ones as much as I can before 12pm. The afternoon involves internal meetings, brainstorms, meetings with influencers, content creation – it really varies! In the evening I still like to keep on top of social media and content so I’ll scan YouTube and watch videos or look at Twitter or Instagram for inspiration.
WHAT ARE THE BIGGEST CHALLENGES YOU FACE?
I’ve always championed engagement and content over reach (i.e. number of followers someone has) because I feel it’s far more important. More brands are becoming savvy to this, but it’s painful at times as we’re often blinded by numbers. I’m not saying this isn’t important, but reach isn’t everything. To get the ROI (return of investment) on a campaign, it’s about choosing the right influencer whose audience resonates with the brand. To put this into context, the amount of YouTube subscribers doesn’t particularly matter in my opinion; it’s the views and comments that count, as these are the people who engage with the content and more likely to purchase. This is applicable to blogs and social media posts too; it’s a challenge but I’m hoping colleagues will eventually be able to see this.
CAN YOU PINPOINT ONE PARTICULAR HIGHLIGHT TO DATE?
Setting up the digital division with my Director at my previous company. This was turning point in my career and I’ve never been happier!
WHAT DO YOU LOVE MOST ABOUT WHAT YOU DO?
The creativity and spontaneity. People are willing to hear to new ideas and welcome big creative campaigns! I love how fluid the industry is, one day you can be at the office planning social media posts, the next you can be at a meeting discussing the next big thing or off to Paris Fashion Week. It really differs so much!
WHAT’S THE BEST PIECE OF CAREER ADVICE YOU’VE EVER BEEN GIVEN?
1. Always find a solution before you raise a problem
2. Even if you don’t know what you’re doing act like it, people will believe you
3. Process is great when necessary. But you can’t always work with process, by the time you have worked up an excel spreadsheet you could have completed the work
WHAT WOULD THE ONE PIECE OF ADVICE TO SOMEONE WANTING TO WORK IN YOUR FIELD BE?
Be passionate about your subject, believe in yourself and your ideas. Speak up and feel the fear, but do it anyway!
HOW DO YOU UNWIND AFTER A LONG DAY?
I find it very difficult to switch off working in social media. I love to be in the know! However there are days when I have to switch off and unwind by going to the gym – or I’ll run a bath, add some bath salts, lavender and just chill. Best feeling ever!
CAN YOU LET US IN ON YOUR FIVE BEAUTY MUST-HAVES?
1. L’Oreal Paris False Lash Sculpt Mascara – I absolutely LOVE it! My lashes have never looked so long.
2. Epsom bath salts: if you’re in need of a good nights sleep they are the best!
3. Bleach London hair dye, as the pigment in the dye is incredible
4. Bare Minerals compact powder Bronzer in Skinny Dip. I have really pale and sensitive skin so I have to be careful what I put on my face. This doesn’t irritate my skin and gives great coverage
5. Eucerin concealer stick, perfect for spot-prone skin whilst covering too
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