Tag Archives: waggener edstrom

Introducing Deeper Context

*deep breath* OK.

The Origin Story

As many of you know, I spent most of 2011 searching for work, after my time at Waggener Edstrom came to an end.  After a lot of soul-searching (and even more job board searching), I realized that the perfect job for me was not out there, so in September I decided to create the job I wanted.

Deeper Context LogoAs my professional passion has been feeding people’s curiosity through well-told and passionate anecdotes, I decided to make that the core focus.  It just so happened that I’d conceived of and registered the perfect name and url for the project several years ago: DeeperContext.com.

The most challenging part of getting Deeper Context up and running since my decision to start has been clarifying my vision in terms that actually describe what I find so rewarding about talking to people about the things they love, and explaining why I think its so valuable for potential clients to embrace this kind of conversation in their marketing efforts. I realize that I’ve blogged a lot about these issues right here, so I wont rehash them (you can click on the sidebar to read any of the posts I’m talking about), and I’m working toward having Deeper Context embody as many of them as possible.

Defining Terms: What is Deeper Context

To quote myself:

We produce mini-documentaries that reveal and explore the human themes within your brand.  These stories excite existing fans — and attract new ones.

DEEPER CONTEXT develops and produces non-fiction audio and video series for the web and portable devices.  Our focus is on the personal experiences of carefully selected interview subjects who are passionate about the world your brand inhabits. They are delivered in a personal, intimate and conversational tone, that resonate emotionally with people in a way that a list of features and benefits cannot.

The website includes a mission statement, some conversation about the value of my work to potential clients, and a portfolio of some of the work I’ve done in this vein (mostly as an employee of Sony Music, though I hope to have that remedied as the weeks and months go by), which I do hope you check out. I would greatly appreciate any feedback, advice or suggestions you may have to offer me as I begin this journey.

 

My Hope For Your Involvement

I have two things to ask of you, dear reader, dear friend.

  1. If my undertaking seems like it might be of value to your or your organization, or if what I’m working on trip some synapses in your head that lead to you having suggestions or recommendations for me, please do let me know.  I’m looking for a few “seed” projects to build up the portfolio and get some good practice in interacting with clients who I consider friends.  I’m also looking for people to partner with, and am quite open to value exchanges.
  2. From time to time, I will be stuck lost and confused about what to do next (okay, let’s be honest, it’s going to be a regular occurrence).  Starting a business is a tough process for which there is no foolproof method, as I’ve learned already.  If you’re in a similar position, don’t keep it to yourself.  Talk to me, blog about it, Skype with a friend, SHARE what you’re learning.  I will do my best to do the same.

What’s Next For My Writing

For those of you who are RSS subscribers (and I know there are a few), you may be interested in the fact that I’ve launched a redesign of jeremymeyers.com, putting more posts front-and-center in a magazine-style format.  This stems from the fact that I am not the worlds most prolific blogger (choosing to post only when I feel I have something worthwhile to say), and the reverse-chronological layout I had previously did not really provide access to all the useful posts from the archives.  I’ve re-categorized 10 years worth of posts to consolidate the main topics down from 23 to 7, and I hope that it proves useful.

I plan to continue blogging here at jeremymeyers.com, and will also be posting more tactical stuff about digital storytelling dos and don’ts over at the Deeper Context blog (which is a little barren at the moment, but I have big plans for it!)

The Thank You’s

The road ahead is exciting and scary, but a few people have helped me along through this process that I would be remiss in not mentioning by name.

  • Amanda Lee Anderson, who designed the Deeper Context logo, and has been supportive of me and the new project throughout.
  • Megan Elizabeth Morris, whose boundless enthusiasm, infectious energy and pragmatic advice kept me pushing forward when I was ready to start looking for digital strategy jobs.
  • Mynde Mayfield, who has given me invaluable feedback and helped me inject more heart into my writing.
  • All the friends, former coworkers and other folks who I’ve pestered to look at my site and give me feedback or help me with some design work, code or grammatical snafu, including but (definitely) not limited to Jason Moriber, David Patton, Melissa Pierce, Chris Melvin, Peter Ciccotto, Judy Lerner and Kristie Macris.
  • …and of course my awesome girlfriend Kate Farina, my eternal champion, without whom I would most certainly not have the courage to follow this dream. I love you a really disgustingly large amount, momo.

 

So, that’s what I’ve been up to, and what I will be up to for the foreseeable future.

Wish me luck!

 

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In which Jeremy’s career begins a new direction at @WaggenerEdstrom

So, here’s some news

Image representing Waggener Edstrom as depicte...
Image via CrunchBase

As of this week, I’ve left my position as Digital Content and Editorial person at Sony Music and joined the Studio D team at PR firm Waggener Edstrom.

This decision caps off a decade-long career in the music industry that saw the rise of Napster, the industries curious response, and the resulting transformational steps. I don’t want to editorialize too much about the state of the business (meet me for drinks for that) except to say that there are a lot of very smart people who are very passionate about music that remain at companies that are slow to transition to the new realities of their marketplace.

In any case, this post is not about that. It’s about my process and discovery and how using online tools helped connect me with what has ultimately become my new gig.

When I came across the job posting (on Craigslist, of all places), it seemed like it’d be a very good match. The job entails creating content, project managing websites and advising on new technologies and integrating new communications platforms into existing strategies. My level of interest and excitement grew when I began to research Waggener Edstrom, who admittedly I’d never heard of before (the music industry tends to be very insular in the list of companies hired to do PR, and honestly does not tend to work at a scale where a WaggEd would make sense).

This is a company that truly believes in the power of storytelling, authenticity, and unlike many PR firms, they are expanding their interest, dedication to and staffing of the digital world. They are mainly known in the PR world for being the agency of record for Microsoft, although they work on many interesting accounts, including many in the commercial products sector. They are constantly winning awards both for their work (recently awarded NW PR agency of the year , and Entrepreneur of the Year for Melissa Waggener) and for employment (PR week named them the bronze medalist in their “best place to work” awards) I very shortly found myself becoming a big fan of WaggEd.

Because this would be a major shift in the trajectory of my career, and because I spend way too much time on social networks, my next step was to research all I could about the company, and more importantly the people, minds and voices with whom I would be interacting. It’s very important to me to be surrounded by people who share my vision for the power of communication, storytelling and authenticity.

Waggener has several blogs, one of the most popular being Thinkers And Doers, a home for insight from the Studio D team. Their posts reflected a curiosity and viewpoint that I could easily align myself with, so I began commenting, when I had something to say about the topic.

At the same time, I searched for and followed as many Waggener people as I could on Twitter, using the bios page on waggeneredstrom.com as a starting point, and expanding the list using @dacort‘s tweepsearch.com. I set up a separate TweetDeck group specifically for all the WaggEd folk, and started listening to what they were saying, selectively responding, and getting to know some of the people inside the company and what they’re all about.

Throughout this process, I’m happy to have been able to chat with a bunch of people and really start to get to know them. Now that I have the job, I also have friends inside the company, so I wont be starting from scratch, which is always a bonus when beginning at a new job.

You’ll notice that throughout the course of this post, I have not mentioned any of the typical steps one takes in order to get a new job (e.g. the interview process, references, linkedin profiles, etc). While these obviously took place (Waggener was very rigorous in their interview process), that process has been covered to death elsewhere, and was less notable than what happened outside the “what strengths do you think you can bring to the company” type interviews.

Anyway, they made the decision to bring me on board,  I start August 3rd, and I look forward to the new challenges and opportunities this position will bring.