We Need More Fun in Marketing

Amanda is a nine year Edelman veteran on Edelman’s digital team. During her time at the company, Amanda has had the chance to work on a wide variety of clients and industries from technology to retail. Amanda has extensive digital account experience working on some of Edelman’s biggest integrated accounts such as Adobe doing work to create fully integrated campaigns aimed at bringing earned, owned, influencer and paid media together to tell one holistic story. Amanda leads the TJX Influencer team and has nine plus years in the influencer marketing space. Amanda works with her clients to create fully integrated campaigns that bring earned, owned and influencer programs together. Her clients have include Samsung, HP, PayPal, Microsoft, Starbucks, Nestle, Barilla, Wacom, Adobe and more. Prior to her time at Edelman, Amanda worked for the fashion company HMX where she started the brands social media channels and dipped her toe into the world of merchandising and planning/ allocation. Amanda has a Bachelors in Business Administration and a minor in communication from the George Washington University School of Business.



[00:00:00] Amanda: Don’t just send hi, I’m blah, blah, blah. Like we think our talent would be good for you. It’s this person who just posted this awesome photo of them and their Halloween costume. Like they love the brand just starting to get those personalized touches and the pitches make a huge difference.

[00:00:23] Jessy: Hey guys, welcome to the party. I just finished recording this week’s episode. We’ve got a guest. It’s fantastic because while she’s fantastic, we’ve got Amanda Mizrahi of Edelman with us today. So I’m going to introduce her in just a sec and you’ll hear from her about, she’s got such a good client. She has 11 years of experience working at this agency.

You guys, she’s got a lot of info that she shared, which, we got into it. I’m excited for you guys to listen. I also want to make sure that everyone. Sitting is aware of all the planning that’s happening because we are about to come to a city near you. Last year we did LA twice, New York, and Chicago once.

And we had these like giant 10 pole events and they were super fun. This year we’re expanding to other cities and making the events just like more intimate and fun and a nice girls’ night out. So if you are in, we’re coming to New York, Chicago, and LA for sure. But also. Boston, Charlotte, North Carolina.

We’re coming to Atlanta, Miami, Dallas, Texas, San Francisco, and Nashville, Tennessee. That’s where we’re starting. And we have all these incredible ambassadors that we’re announcing on our Instagram who are feverishly planning all of these fun events for you guys. So I’m just excited for you to meet.

more women in marketing. It’s like the most rewarding experience to just meet and surround yourself with like-minded women who are going through all the same things that you’re going through on a day to day. But I don’t know, marketing usually attracts generally like pretty like-minded people and it’s where we’re planning fun nights out.

So coffee meetups and paint and sips and Pilates classes together, like really just like fun, casual night out. And I’m excited for you guys to be part of it. So if so, here’s what I would suggest, go to our events page, which is swim. com slash events. So there’ll be a pop-up on that page asking, do you want to meet with more women.

Your neck of the woods, like your city. So fill out that form and tell us where you’re located. And then as soon as we announce that we’re coming to that city and what we’re doing, you’ll get an email about it and you’ll be able to come and meet up with everybody. And we’ve already done a couple of these in Dallas and we did New York.

Those are like our test run cities and everyone’s had been having a nice time. We don’t like always having to talk about work all the time. Like last year we had. Panel discussions and if interesting, then we make them fun. But, I don’t know, maybe it’s just me. I’m like, I’m craving more community and more women, interesting, fun, wonderful women in my life, and more friends.

And I think that’s what we’re aiming to create here with these events this year. So anyway, if that resonates with you. Go to our website and sign up for it. Okay. So this week’s episode, so Amanda is an 11-year Edelman veteran on their digital team. She’s had the chance to work on a wide variety of clients and industries from technology to retail, and she’s had extensive digital account experience working on some of Edelman’s.

Biggest integrated accounts doing work to create fully integrated campaigns, aimed at bringing earned owned influencer and paid media together to tell one holistic story. Before her time at Edelman, she worked for the fashion company HMX, where she started the brand’s social media channels and dipped her toe into the world of merchandising, planning, and allocation.

And she’s got a bachelor of business administration. And a minor in communications from the George Washington University School of Business. I’m very excited to welcome a member of WHIM, a mentor of WHIM, and a friend of mine, Amanda Mizrahi of Edelman. Enjoy this episode, you guys.

This show is sponsored by Women in Influencer Marketing, better known as WIM, the best online community for the creator economy. You will meet fellow influencer marketers, you’ll meet brands, you’ll meet talent agencies to talk shop, get hired, and even find a mentor. When you become a member, do not forget to Check out all of our incredible resources.

For example, we have dozens of masterclasses from the top voices, TikTok, YouTube, award-winning agencies and women who are paving the way for us all. So if you want the chance to network with FooSoo and influencer marketing, check out what it takes to become a member. Make more money and have fun doing it.

Visit I am wim.com/join. That’s I-A-M-W-I-I m.com/join today, and I so look forward to seeing you more around the community. All right, so thank you first and foremost just for being here today because you’ve been. I guess we’ve been chatting most recently about your involvement in our mentorship program.

And I’ve been wanting to add some interesting guests to our lineup for this year. So when you accepted my offer, I was excited to have you on. So yeah. So thank you for coming on today. I think like a great. a place to start is maybe just like a brief, like an introduction. We heard a little bit about you in the intro, of course, but I want you to take us further back.

So what was Amanda like as a kid? do you see that the young Amanda would have ended up where you are today? It’s a good 

[00:06:19] Amanda: question. It’s so funny. When I was little, I remember when they asked you like, what do you want to be when you’re older? At 1st, I was like, I wanted to be an anchor on the Today show because I watched the show with my parents every day.

And then my dad told me what a CEO was. And I was like, I want to be a CEO. And so I told everyone I wanted to be a CEO and everyone laughed at me. And I was like. I don’t get why I can’t be a CEO. that’s, it sounds like a cool job. So I got like a little PalmPilot when I was little like I started investing in stocks.

I got a Tiffany stock when I was in sixth grade. Like I was that kid. So wait, I love 

[00:06:58] Jessy: sixth grade, Amanda. This is amazing. Okay. Continue, please. 

[00:07:04] Amanda: I think for me, like I got laughed at for wanting to be a CEO, but I was like, This seems like a great job. Like I get to run a company and lead people like this seems great.

So I think it not super surprising where I ended up, but I, Oh, it was like this joke where I told people I wanted to be CEO and everyone was like, that’s a ridiculous thing to want to be. But. Now we have great female CEOs and it’s not a ridiculous career path. So do you think 

[00:07:33] Jessy: that they were like, what was in the joke?

I understand that it could be a little bit silly to just see a six-year-old or something walking around with a Palm Pilot thinking they’re a business person. I don’t know. Can we dig into that a little bit more? do you think it was just silly to see a young kid doing that? Or do you think there was like a little bit more to it?

And maybe times have 

[00:07:54] Amanda: changed. I think times have changed. It’s funny. I talk to kids now, or, I mentor a lot of people and people have like really big ambitions and they want to do big things. And I think, when we were little, I guess it was like a different view of Oh, do you want to be, I don’t know, a vet or do you want to have all these like traditional jobs that maybe like we were taught that as women, these are the jobs that we can do.

And I think for me, I had parents who were in powerful jobs. My dad worked in real estate at Starbucks and my mom worked in special events at Nordstrom. So I had these parents who were doing like really cool, big things for these. iconic Seattle brands. So for me, I was like, Hey, like both of my parents are doing awesome things.

Like I can think bigger too, which helps me have kind of role models. 

[00:08:45] Jessy: And so who was it that said you could be a CEO? Like, where did that idea come from and how long did that play out in your mind as something that you were striving for? 

[00:08:54] Amanda: My dad did. And I remember just being like, Oh, this is such an interesting, I didn’t think about this as a job.

And I think he was the one that was like. I’ll get you a PalmPilot because I have a PalmPilot and just I think again, just like you can do big things and get the stock for my birthday. I was like, this is cool. I love Tiffany’s bracelets. He was like, stocks really important to get.

So just starting those behaviors and, maybe it was like nerdy at the time, but I’m like, Hey, I still have those stocks, and that Tiffany’s stock is doing 

[00:09:26] Jessy: really well. Do you think that it was, do you think that it did anything to you? That it was your dad that was telling you this. do you have siblings?

and yeah, what was it like having your dad, not your mom, but your dad tell you that, this is what you can do? I’m going to help you get there. 

[00:09:47] Amanda: I, I think it was special. And I think just saying you can do whatever you want to do, right? As you can, if you want to work in finance, remember I interned for a finance company and I was the only woman at that company I was, I think.

Also, I was so nerdy I interned when I was in high school, right? I was like Wearing my like culotte pants and my briefcase, like walking into this company. And I think I looked around and I was like, there’s no women here. This is like a space where there are no women. And I think that to me was motivating of like, how can I get into a world in which there are no women in the finance field and the.

Good job I was working at. And so I think just pushing myself and now obviously I’m in an Edelman’s pretty female-dominated, I think we’re 85 percent women, so that’s pretty cool to be in a company that’s primarily women and really in that more supportive place. 

[00:10:41] Jessy: So I have a question.

I was actually just talking to someone about this like last week and she Works at a fintech company in the influencer space which the influencer space is generally more female-dominated but working in fintech is still pretty male-dominated and she had seen people leave over time because of, I don’t know, just a lot of very, to her, very clearly like discriminatory things and just not recognizing women that deserve to be recognized and they were just getting discouraged.

Yeah. But what I heard you say is that you walked into a male-dominated space and you were motivated to make more of a presence for yourself and maybe even bring more women there. Yeah. So how did you get to that? Mindset, what do you think it is for you that motivates you versus discourages you when put in those types of situations?

[00:11:40] Amanda: Yeah, I think for me, again, I think from the way I was raised, and when I was taught was just like, you can do whatever, right? And that’s exciting. And if nobody’s done it before, you have to put the hard work in and you can be the first one to do something if you put effort into it.

And I feel like that hard work ethic was instilled from a very young age Okay, you might not be the best, but you can try really, hard at something. And I think that’s my career mantra, right? I was like, I will be the person that like, tries so, so hard. It might not be the best, but I’m going to put the effort in, take the classes, like whatever it takes to be the best version of myself.

[00:12:22] Jessy: So I used to be that person too. I’ve said out loud many times, that I’ll just work the hardest of anybody. And cause some things just don’t come easily to me. And certainly like successful, like achievements, things that I’ve achieved over time like I feel like nothing’s been handed to me. So I’ve always had to be the person who works harder than everyone else to get the thing.

I think what I’ve experienced as I’ve gotten older is sometimes that’s not the path either. Sometimes it’s just who you know, or what sort of seems like shortcuts for all, just to sum it up. So what are your thoughts on that? do you still believe that hard work can do anything? Or in your experience, have you reframed how you think about achievements and getting there?

[00:13:13] Amanda: Yeah. I still think hard work is so important. And I think I hit a point in my career. I think it was like year six entitlement where I just hit this wall. I was working all the time and I loved what I did. I just was so burned out. I was living in a one-bedroom apartment in San Francisco.

I had a roommate who lived in my living room and it was just like, I was commuting every day. It was just like exhausting and I almost left the company and I had a mentor who was like, You love this company. Can you maybe move to a different office, take a different job, just like reset because you’ve gotten to this point where you say yes to everything and you just need a new start?

And so at that point, I moved. I was in San Francisco. I moved back to Seattle, which is where I’m from. And it was like this life reset. I had a different manager. I took on a different job. That’s actually when I started doing influencer marketing full-time at Edelman and started having my team.

And that was like the point where I was like, I have to reset the way that I work and it’s crazy. Seattle is a very different culture than our other offices. I think it’s special that people come in at 8:30 and promptly at five people leave and pick their kids up and they have a life outside of work.

They’re going hiking or sailing or whatever it is. So I think it almost forced me to think about okay, can I be more productive in the hours that I have in the workday? And to your point, nobody’s giving me a gold star for working till 10 PM. and if I work till 10 PM, then it’s setting the precedent for my team to work till 10 PM.

Now I am so I’m like a recovering workaholic, I work East Coast hours. So I have a calendar hold starting at 4 PM. And I don’t work past 4 p.m. I have an out of office, I do a 5 p. m. workout class like religiously, I don’t skip unless something crazy is happening. And I just think like setting those boundaries, I’m just more productive during the hours that I work.

[00:15:18] Jessy: I think that’s incredible that’s, you’ve been able to set those boundaries, that you’ve been able to see the results and like the benefits of doing all that. I, there, you didn’t do that early on in your career. Do you think that? generationally, like the younger generation now.

are doing that earlier on? Or do you think that you have to like, earn your like, pay your dues, and maybe do that sort of thing later on after you’ve paid those dues? What are your thoughts? 

[00:15:53] Amanda: I think there’s so much better at setting boundaries than we were like, we, I would never say no to my boss.

Like they would ask things. I’d be like, Oh my gosh, yes, I will stay. I’ll work weekends. and I think this generation’s a lot better at saying. For me to do my job, I need to do that workout class or I need to sign off at 12 on a Friday because I worked, all of my hours this week. So I think there’s a healthy balance.

So sometimes I see it swing the other way where it’s okay, I’m signing on at 9:30 every day. And I’m like, we had a launch this morning at 9. You miss that launch moment or We have a big event coming up and you’re going to have to work extra hours. So I think it comes, somebody told me in the agency world, like you have to be okay with the work coming in waves.

So like when it’s busy, you embrace the busyness, but when it’s not, you’re, you sign off early and you take the break. 

[00:16:46] Jessy: And so you work with you work with a pretty substantially sized team. Like you’re a huge company. It’s been around for so long. And I’m sure that as you guys continue to hire new people and grow and expand and have the need to hire new people that like, You’ll get, maybe younger and younger folks who possibly work differently than you do.

So in the instance where somebody is setting those boundaries, which maybe you respect as a person, but the business has different needs. How do you approach those conversations as their 

[00:17:24] Amanda: boss? Yeah, I think it’s hard and I think the way that we’ve worked is so different. For example, I’m in Seattle, and our clients live in Boston.

So you look at like work hours and that’s tricky. Like I have to take 6 am calls sometimes. And I think we talk a lot about okay, if you’re going to take the 6 am call, you can sign off at three. that’s great. please do it. I think we’ve talked a lot about just communicating what your boundaries are, what your hours are, and just being.

Consistent with that. So if you are going to work East Coast hours, that’s awesome. be available starting at, 6 a. m. or whatever. But I think that communication has just been really important, especially for my team. I think we’re across, 3 different time zones and 5 different states. And, I have somebody in Montana.

I have somebody in Texas. I have Somebody in Boston, they’re just all over the place. So it’s a lot about trust too. It’s I’m, we’re all adults like we can all do our jobs, but you need to show that you can be consistent and show up. Do you have any 

[00:18:30] Jessy: like tips or hacks for? working across so many different time zones and working remotely, because I feel like that could be a challenge for so many people.

And like the way that we work has launched in that direction of remote work, but it can be hard. None of us were taught how to do that. So we’re all just figuring it out as we go. I guess like what’s worked for you and maybe what hasn’t worked for 

[00:18:56] Amanda: you. Yeah. I think again, I think when we all started, especially those of us on the West Coast, we fought the East Coast timeframe where we were like, this isn’t working.

I’m going to go do my morning workout. And then you’ve signed on and you’ve missed 3 meetings and things like that. So I think it is like communication. okay, if we’re going to start early, we’re going to sign off early and we’re going to stick to it. I think that’s been part of it too. I know our East Coast team members, don’t want to work till 6 or 7 PM.

So I think. Okay. Just being respectful of people’s schedules and communicating has been crucial. And I think the other part is just building relationships with people and forgetting, I think we sometimes remote work. these are humans. we used to have happy hours with people and you got to know people beyond just the work.

And I think that for me has helped build the team. You get to hear about people’s personal lives and I do a lot of on-ones with the team and I think that’s been helpful just to build culture because you don’t get that when you work from home. You don’t have those personal relationships as much exactly like 

[00:20:04] Jessy: certainly not as much as you would when you have the opportunity to just like spontaneously go out with people or even just obviously in a planned environment.

So we have a lot of younger listeners. And maybe you’re trying to even get your first job in influencer marketing. And as I’m sure the job market is very challenging right now. And we’ve had quite a few members reach out and be like, I need advice. I’m trying to, get my foot in the door and it’s so hard because more senior people are having trouble getting roles and I’m competing with them for the first time.

And how do you even, how do you manage that? Do you have any advice for some of our younger listeners, maybe like recently graduated who are looking for their first job and how to get into influencer marketing? 

[00:20:57] Amanda: Yeah. So I got my job at Edelman. It was like pure luck. And it’s such a frustrating story for people who like, I know Edelman’s like people’s top companies and that’s, they learned about them in school.

I was doing, I went, I did an advanced advertising class. And. I got introduced to this guy who worked for a viral video company. This is like back in the day when this was a thing and I didn’t want to work in viral videos. But I talked to him because it was an interesting job. It was a social media job, which is what I wanted to do.

And he told me, he was like, Oh, my boss who works at Goodby just started at Edelman. She’s hiring a full team. You should talk to her. And I was like, I don’t want to go to an agency. I wanted to go to the house. That was my path. And so I talked to him and he was. Or I talked to the woman at Edelman and she was like, yeah, I’m hiring a full team.

We just won this piece of business. And again, I was just like, I don’t know if this is like the company I want to go to. I kept an open mind and I applied for a job. I didn’t get it. And I was super bummed. I was living in San Francisco. I moved back up to Seattle because I was so frustrated with the San Francisco job market.

The day that I moved back to Seattle, I got a call from Edelman and they were like, Hey, we’d love for you to intern or interview for our internship process. So I flew down to San Francisco for the day, pretended like I was still living there, interviewed, got the job, and ended up moving back. And I think the point of my story is like, that you never know what connections are going to lead you to the job.

And I think. If I was closed-minded and said, I don’t want to go work for a viral video company, like I’m not going to talk to this person I wouldn’t have met the woman who ended up hiring me. And so I think keeping an open mind and just having a lot of informational interviews, even with people who you’re like, I don’t even know if this person doesn’t even work in my industry.

They might know someone who knows someone in this industry as is so small. So I think just building those relationships, even if it’s not, there’s no job opening at the time, like talk to as many people as you possibly can. And so 

[00:23:04] Jessy: that’s such, good advice, but I want to dig into it even more. So if someone were to come to you and say, I’d love to just pick your brain, like I’m looking to get into the industry, like what types of questions impress you? what would make someone stand out in an informational type interview? 

[00:23:23] Amanda: with you? This is part of like last year, I decided that I wanted to say yes to more of these.

I just said no to so many because it was overwhelming. I do probably one of these a week now because people reach out and I think it’s an important way to get back. I think what sets people apart is when people are prepped and they come with really thoughtful questions and they’ve done their research.

So there was a really interesting campaign or this brand messed up. And I saw so much bad press, like how do you mitigate risk with influencers or just being thoughtful and like reading the news and consuming culture before you go into those calls and just prepping like right questions don’t.

expect, like sometimes people expect me to run the conversation and I’m like, I’m here to answer any questions, but I’m not, this isn’t for me. This is for you.

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com. I mentioned WIIM, that’s join Z-E-A-L-O t.com and mention WIIM. I think you guys are gonna love this one. And I love when women like to raise their hands and they lean into things. Yes. And that takes practice. that’s not just. innate for everybody. And so some people are like, Ooh, that’s not me.

I’m a little bit more shy or introverted or whatever it is. And you don’t have to be an extrovert to be successful. But I do think that it’s certainly beneficial for that person to practice being more assertive raise your hand and lean into the conversation. And like you said, like It doesn’t need to like, it can be prepped like you can just simply, and it’s a positive thing to go say, okay, I have this opportunity to chat with someone.

The pressure is so much lower when you come into it, having done a bunch of research versus putting all this pressure on yourself to say like, all right, it’s showtime. You’re gonna perform and ask all the amazing questions. some people can pull that off, but who are you impressing by doing that?

Like literally nobody. So do your research and prep. I also think it’s interesting to talk about how you were saying you were looking to be in a house somewhere and you ended up at an agency and you’ve been there. How many years have you been at Edelman? 

[00:26:30] Amanda: now? It’s over 11. It’s crazy. Yeah, it’s a long time.

[00:26:34] Jessy: I thought it was around 10. So even over 10 years. So it’s a long time. And, there, there are differences between working in-house and working in an agency. And for somebody who, I don’t know, they’re considering. either or at various times in their career. What are some of the best and most challenging parts of working at an agency?

[00:27:02] Amanda: So I think it’s funny. The reason I wanted to go in-house is I was working In fashion, and that’s the kind of my background when I was interning and in my mind, I was like, I’m gonna go work for like a gap or like one of these big retailers. And I, when I was looking for jobs, there’s, 1 social media person, right?

and that person has more experience. So trying to get an entry-level job was hard. So I think when you think about 2, Somebody explained working in an agency, like going to graduate school and it is right. You learn so many skills so quickly, you learn how to write a good email, how to show up in a meeting, how to present like all of these tangible skills that you can use elsewhere.

Like you learn quickly. So I think some great parts like entry-level, you just learn a lot. And then when you go to an agency, we also describe Adelman as a jungle gym, not a ladder. So I have touched so many things in my career. I did crisis for six months because I thought that I wanted to work on our crisis comms team.

I do not, but I like super helpful experiences, or I worked in social media. That’s where I started. I was on our community management team. I loved that until I was like, okay, what’s next? And then I did more integrated work. So you get to try out so many different things at an agency. I think that’s special.

And there are just really smart people who work at agencies. One of my friends is a nutritionist and she has, she’s a registered dietitian and she specializes in food comms, like such a niche. But so awesome when you can work with somebody like that and tap their smart brain.

So I think that’s special at an agency. On the flip side, I think Agency life sometimes is crazy and you’re working on multiple clients and the pace of an agency moves really fast and some people are not here for it. They want like a slower pace, but for me, I never get bored and I love that I love that if I want to touch a different client or a different industry, I can easily do that.

I love that. 

[00:29:09] Jessy: That’s a good sort of like a recap of some of the challenging things and also like just some of the really great things. Cause I love the idea and the concept that. You can go into this one environment and try so many different types of roles or responsibilities and learn so many different things in one place.

And it feels, I don’t know, from an outsider’s perspective at least, like It feels like a little bit like of a safer environment because it’s not just all or nothing, you’re in an environment where you can try something and maybe it’s not the best fit, but there are so many other types of opportunities, maybe even still working on the same account, and that can be really, I think that could be particularly cool for just people Who are a little bit earlier on in their careers.

back in the day, like I remember taking, so I didn’t start my first internship until I had graduated college. And then I went like gangbusters and did so many different types of internships. And I recommend that still to people to this day, because it’s the safest environment to be able to just learn so many things. After all, you’re, if you’re that young.

You don’t know anything about work yet as you’ve been in a collegiate bubble and like we all have these notions about I want to do this, but until you get into a true working environment, you really can’t know, you just don’t know what the day to day and the ins and outs are.

But I think that’s a great point too. It’s maybe you think agency life is for you, but then you get there and you’re like, Ooh, this is like really fast-paced. So maybe there are elements of agency life that are appealing, but the day-to-day and the realities of it is that it’s fast-paced. And maybe that’s not the best fit for you. 

[00:30:54] Amanda: I think the other cool thing is like people, I’ve had people on my team who come from many different backgrounds and different places, even within the own, its agency. So like a girl on my team was on the PR team and I just saw so much potential in her that I was like, do you want to come to the influencer team?

So I moved her over and I’ve moved, I think four or five people from my team who came from other teams within Edelman. Because for me, that makes them better influencer marketers. Like they understand they came from a community management background, or they came from a PR background. They came from like even a corporate affair.

So like just bringing some of that background has made them better at their job. So I think you can also move around, right? Like you can get some great skills and then move within the same company. That’s really 

[00:31:44] Jessy: interesting. I hope people heard that. It’s really, that’s a really good tip. I think that’s awesome.

So let’s talk a little bit about it from the brand’s perspective, especially in the world that we live in right now, where everything is like commerce. You can be a pretty small lean, like a brand, and have crazy amounts of sales and get traction on using social media and just be, seemingly overnight a successful company.

So my question is for some of those. Smaller or newer companies, brands specifically, at what point should a brand work with an agency versus maybe going a different direction and hiring marketing folks to come in-house to work at the 

[00:32:35] Amanda: brands? Yeah. Yeah. it’s interesting. I feel Influencer marketing is not new.

But for some companies, it feels new. It’s like social media used to be like this new newer space. I think, as people start, I think it’s like dipping their toe and testing and somebody from the marketing team can start working with influencers and building those relationships.

I think when it gets to the point where you’re working with influencers, like a lot of influencers at one time. And you’re working with higher tiers of influencers. I think that’s where an agency can be incredibly helpful to be the extra arms, especially. When you look at our clients, they’re teams of two people, right?

They can’t work with the 200 influencers that we work with for some of our larger clients. So I think that’s really important. And then I also think from an agency perspective, just speaking from Edelman, right? Like we talk about promoting and protecting our brand. So not only are you using influencers to promote, but like we’re going into an election year.

I think. That people are, it’s scary, right? Like we’re going into a year where there are a lot of unknowns and talented people, who represent your brand. And so being able to tap into, Adelman has a crisis team, right? We have risk mitigation teams, like things like that, right? So being able to tap into those teams when things get tough, because this industry is not predictable.

And I think having those resources, you’re doing large-scale programs is helpful. Got 

[00:34:11] Jessy: it. That’s great advice. It’s an interesting way of thinking about it too. And just the perspective that you guys have also, because like I’m thinking of like the caliber and size of your agency like you’re working with so many brands already, but you’re also just like experiencing all of these things that taking that in.

And now working with another brand, you’ll avoid that for you’ll avoid that trap for another brand because you’ve learned you’ve seen one other brand go through something challenging. So like even knowing that Oh, it’s an election year and that could equate to some issues working with influencers and stuff like you’re going to be in a position to be able to mitigate that.

So it’s really interesting. Also, just having that you’ve worked with so many brands and so many large brands, I can imagine the work is really interesting and rewarding. And especially from an influencer’s perspective, like you’re some. You work with some brands that are like on influencers, and dream lists, but from, your advice, I want to be like a fly on the wall in the room with you and your team and your clients.

What are some best practices for working with big brands? 

[00:35:25] Amanda: Yeah. Yeah. I think. I’d like the passion. It has to be there. I think we know when people are like phoning it in, like if you don’t shop at this brand or you don’t use the software, you don’t drink this kind of coffee. we can tell.

and I think the passion of Oh, my gosh, I grew up going to the store. My grandma and I used to shop here and it’s something that I care so deeply about. That human part comes through and we try to make sure our clients have that connection with our partners too. So if we’re doing.

Yeah. In an in-person event, we usually do a dinner with our clients, and they can meet the partners. And I think that our clients are drawn toward the people who truly love the brand, truly love the partnership, and go above and beyond for the brand. And that doesn’t mean. You have to post all the time about the brand to give away free work.

I think there’s like a happy medium, but like somebody who’s like really responsive and who really cares and read the brief and showed up and just like really is passionate to be there. we all know those influencers who sometimes show up and it’s like a paycheck and you can tell it’s a paycheck to them.

So I think we try to do longer-term partnerships too. And so really finding those people who authentically love the brand and have a tie is just so important. And 

[00:36:45] Jessy: how do you get to the core of that? Because I feel like that is certainly the goal for so many people that they might struggle with. How do I truly discern whether this person likes blowing smoke and pretending to be the biggest fan versus what they are?

I think that Some of the upfront work of betting, your partners is some of the most important work because it’ll just set you up for success or failure. So yeah, what are some ways that you do some due diligence in the beginning? 

[00:37:14] Amanda: Yeah. So I don’t, I feel like people always look for shortcuts where they’re like, I don’t want to get on the phone with this person.

I’m just going to look at their social media. And I think I was like, wait like it’s like matchmaking when you try to find a brand and an influencer because you have to have that, right chemistry. And I’m sure you felt this way, you get on a phone call and sometimes you just are like, I’m not feeling it.

this person just doesn’t feel like a good fit. They don’t want to be here. this isn’t going to work. And I think you can’t do the phone step. I think people want to cut that out and just send an agreement. And I know some companies like the strategy is like, let’s send 5, 000 briefs never and create the same piece of content.

Like to me. That is just not the way in, you have to get on the phone. We have great relationships with agents. Like we’re always talking to people about their talent and their roster. And then we do, of course, go through social sites and see, are, has been shared about the brand before. is this the first time that they’ve ever talked about the brand?

we had an influencer who dressed up as one of the coffee companies I mentioned for Halloween and had this whole costume and just loved the brand. So I think there’s like the paperwork part and then there’s like very much the just like relationship building piece. 

[00:38:26] Jessy: Wow. like to get on it, that’s interesting, right?

Yeah. I could also see a question coming up, which is like, how do I even get on your radar? If I’m a fan of that brand, are you telling this story about someone dressing up as that brand for Halloween? That’s one way to do it. What’s, what are some other ways that I’m sure you’ve seen so many different strategies there?

So What lands with you when either a manager or the creator themselves are just the, they’re genuine fans, but they need to get on your radar. What works for you? What really 

[00:39:03] Amanda: gets through? Yeah. So I will say Edelman does a lot of community management. So when people post and like tag the brand and it’s something special.

We usually see our community manager send us talent all the time. So that does work. I think people are like, does it go into this like a black hole? It works. I think I like customizing pitches. It’s like the basics. But don’t just send hi, I’m blah, blah, blah. we think our talent would be good for you.

It’s this person who just posted this awesome photo of them and their Halloween costume. Like they love the brand. Like just starting to get those personalized touches and the pitches make a huge difference. And I know this is hard, but like knowing who to go to, I don’t cast talent anymore, which is unfortunate, just not part of my job, but, I’ll loop in like our talent team who is doing that and just like making sure that you’re, because I’ve had people who reach out to me and I’m like, I already introduced you to my talent team.

I’m not the one, casting, please reach out to the talent team. So like reading the room a little bit and making sure, if somebody tells you, To reach out to this person, please do reach out to that person. 

[00:40:10] Jessy: Yeah, man, that’s really good advice because sometimes the best advice is like going back to basics because some people forget the basics sometimes.

And I feel like especially from a manager’s perspective, a creator’s perspective, like in the pitching process, some of that can become a little automated. Yeah. And the cringiest moments happen when those automations go awry. Yeah. And so it’s a perfect example. if you were like, I’m not, I’m just not the person to reach out to and you want to step ahead, beyond and was like, this is the person to reach out to and they still reach out to you.

It’s just like, how is that person going to perform when I give them a long brief that I need them to follow and they can’t follow the instructions because they didn’t do it in the simple, circumstance? 

[00:40:54] Amanda: So yeah. And then I think too, once you start working with us, like some agents are so responsive and so great.

And some people are like, to your point, like we’re trying to get their talent on a briefing call and they don’t respond. And I think this industry is really small, right? As an agency, we talk and I think it’s just making sure that these agents are like, we’re all on 1 team. We’re trying to get, the best for our client.

if we. Love working with you. We’ll get you more work and we’ll recommend you to another team. So I think just reputation and industry is so important. 

[00:41:29] Jessy: Okay. Want to dig into that a little bit. I think that I want to, I love being a little, like a fly on the wall. And no, you said you’re not necessarily casting the campaigns these days.

And you have a team that does that, but I know you’re privy to all those. Oh yeah. Yeah. And there are situations where creators. are shiming. I’m sure your team. Oh, my God, you guys. This person was amazing. We have to find more opportunities to partner. And then there are those people that just fall flat.

And you’re like, I just can’t work. Obviously. Don’t name names, but I would love to hear some of those, anecdotes of what really, impresses you guys throughout the process once they’re hired and what, really distinguishes those people in your eyes versus what mistakes are people making that really bad taste in people’s mouths?

[00:42:25] Amanda: Yeah. I think it’s on the bad part like it’s just missing the basics, right? Where it’s like, We’ll spend the time to brief somebody and they’re not reading a briefing book and they shot something incorrectly. And now we’re late to a timeline, again, basics. But I think, I can’t tell you how many times people don’t read the brief and don’t follow, the work back that we sent, like those things, because then we’re late to a client.

So I think it’s honestly on the bad part. It’s like missing the basics, which. Sometimes it’s frustrating. You’re like, it’s in the playbook. We went on the phone. We outlined it. I think on the flip side, people that stand out, there are people again, who just they just genuinely care and they’ll send us emails.

I was in a store and I saw, I don’t know, we had an influencer, Oh, the Western boot is trending. And I would love to do a post about this because my followers keep asking me where I can get these. Can I help you guys do a post? And so I think just having a pulse on what’s happening or they’ll proactively come to us and pitch like a lot of, influencers are doing in-person events.

Can I host an in-person event in my market? And one of our influencers pitched that and we’re doing an event in Nashville and her local market. And our client was super jazzed to do this. So I think you look at just the passion behind some of these people and just, they truly care about the brand.

They feel like they’re an extension of our team. And I think that’s a really important part. Like they feel invested. 

[00:43:59] Jessy: two things that you just said stood out to me. One. is recounting what that woman or man said, that person said about like, how can I help you? And I think that not enough pitches have that perspective in mind.

It’s this is my follower count. This is my, this is what I’m doing, blah, blah, blah. But I think that the best pitches always consider who you’re pitching to and how you can help and support them as well. So like coming to you guys and I’m sure saying this isn’t my statement, but my followers are asking about how to buy your product more.

And I want to help facilitate that. Like innately, that’s helping you guys. And I’m sure that stands out more. The other thing that I heard you say, which stood out is don’t be afraid to pitch something that’s a little outside the box. Yeah, I feel like a lot of people are probably like, I know because I’ve heard it firsthand that a lot of people might be hesitant to pitch something like an event that you guys didn’t necessarily come to them with.

But they’re like, I think this could be cool. And it feels like a long shot to come to you guys and say, I have this idea, that bird idea that feels outside the box, but can we do this together? And they probably hear some nose, yeah, that’s for sure. But you’re telling us a perfect example of how when it’s a yes, it’s a yes. And it was enthusiastic. Yes, I’m sure it sounds like the brand that you work with was enthusiastic about. 

[00:45:34] Amanda: Oh, yeah. And I think it’s important to remember, as an agency or Anyone working in this industry, if you work with a client, we’re being asked to pitch proactive ideas all the time.

So what else could we be doing? And I think for us, as we hear from our partners, that helps us sell more work and sell more interesting ideas to our clients. And I think it’s interesting. For one of our clients, we do work almost like a focus group with our influencers.

And we’ve done these we’ve, I think we’ve done three so far, and we. Had them meet with a buyer. This is for one of our retail clients and the buyer picked their brain about what was trending for spring. And this whole idea came from all of our talent. They know what’s happening in the industry.

They know what’s going to be trending. And so as a buyer, the buyer is this is a wealth of information. These are trendy people who know what’s happening. How can we tap them to see what’s trending? And so again, I think it’s like we came up with this idea because we were getting so much feedback from partners of Oh, this is trending, or I want to make sure, my ideas are hurting your marketing campaign.

So we’ve been doing more and more of, influencers as consultants at Edelman. So I think it’s just an evolution of, the industry and where we’re going, but, using your voice to inform more than just the posts that you’re creating. 

[00:46:59] Jessy: I love that you guys are doing that. It makes a lot of sense.

I think that if any influencers are listening to this, I’m sure their ears perked up because like I’ve heard influencers for so many years, want to expand beyond just sponsored posts and want to share their ideas differently. So I love that you guys are doing that. And yeah.

Speaking of trends, what are some trends that you’ve seen lately in the industry? And also how do you feel about them? 

[00:47:28] Amanda: Yeah. I think that’s a big one I am just thinking through different ways to use influencers. And I think When this industry started, it was like, this is, you’ll get X amount of impressions from working with this person.

They’re going to create one post for you. And that’s it. And then I think now we’re rethinking like, can this person, we have an influencer coming up in a TV commercial. that’s super cool. that’s awesome that we’re now seeing influencers in TV commercials. We’ve been doing this for a retailer. We’ve been doing influencers, and recording things for in-store, Can we have influencers on, the imagery in-store so they can see different body types? And so I think just thinking through the whole marketing mix and where influencers can go in is going to be more important than ever because people want that real person representing them. I think we’ve seen so many of those models that we all can’t relate to.

And influencers are real people. We want Those different people representing us in marketing. So I think that’s a big one I’m here for. I think another trend is just AI. Like we’ve been talking a lot about that. I am personally not a big fan of AI influencers. It’s like a personal thing for me.

We follow influencers because they’re real. I think they’re, it’s an interesting space. I think it looks like the trust piece in a different way. do you trust a robot? Trusting this AI influencer. So interesting to see where that comes in. I know our partners are using AI to craft some of their captions and I can see like really.

Smart ways to use that to your point, like maybe cutting corners so you’re not having to write captions for hours. And I think there are ways AI has been really helpful in our industry. But yeah, I think for me, AI has there’s like some scary parts of it too. You want to make sure the imagery is them and it doesn’t look fake and things like that too.

[00:49:21] Jessy: yeah. There’s a lot to dig into for the AI. That’s like another conversation. bye! I do think that it’s a positive thing that these are trends that you’re hearing about because I had a really interesting conversation with someone just the other day about how she was seeing that women are infinitely less comfortable with a, whether it’s like implementing it into their work or even just Oh, they’re coming for my job.

They were just generally less comfortable with it, which I think to her point, to give her credit, It’s a dangerous thing for, looking at it from, the gender perspective because there are going to be so many more opportunities in the not-so-distant future about AI, about working smarter, not harder like we were talking about before.

And it’s new for everybody. And so it’s interesting because, right now is the time where, Everyone’s a freshman and everybody can explore and feel like there’s, not so many people who are experts. And she found that at least that Men are significantly more prone to explore it and learn about it and all that.

And women aren’t so much. So I don’t know for that reason alone. And I hear what you’re saying and I understand so many of your concerns, but I do think we should push ourselves a little bit more just to be at the forefront, not to even just keep up. forefront of it because it’s going to continue to evolve and change so much, especially in our industry.

I don’t think I am with you when it comes to AI influencers but I don’t think that’s the future of influencer marketing. But some of the AI-driven tools, in particular, can be incredibly helpful. So that’s like a whole, this is like a much larger conversation, but I’m glad that you brought it up.

So as someone who has been at Edelman for now, like 11 years, you’ve been in the industry for a while, a long time. I think that your position in the industry is worth examining because I think that somebody who’s been in the industry for as long as you have. there must be this innate desire to continue that momentum to grow professionally.

And I think that it can look different when you’ve been at a company for 11 years than when you’re, like really young and hungry and you’re a year out that looks so different than how you grow professionally as someone in your position. and so I just want to ask you personally, What is a professional growth goal that you have for yourself this year and how are you approaching 

[00:52:23] Amanda: it? I think for me, it’s funny, I had, I feel like I was very like promotion focused when I was starting in my career. I was like, okay, I’m going to get promoted this year and this is what I need to do. And I had a great mentor who was like, Sometimes you have to pick your personal life and sometimes the choice cannot always be your job.

And I think that was like, Oh, wait, but I want to get promoted. What’s the next thing? And so I think I told you the story when I moved to Seattle and I think that was. That was a personal moment. That was not a promotion moment. That was like, let’s stay in a lateral spot. So I think as we’re entering the year, just thinking through, I think I told you my word for the year was like refresh and just as we talked about, like working smarter, not harder, and just, I keep thinking about like bringing fun back to work.

And we, this is a fun job, right? We work with fun clients. We have these partners who are posting about like really fun things. And I think we’ve become so serious sometimes. I think, especially during the pandemic and working from home we’ve lost a lot of that fun in the work. And so I think that’s a goal of mine is just bringing that back and Yes, we have very high quality standards. We deal with some pretty serious things, but the majority of the stuff that we’re doing is really exciting and fun. And we work with people every day. And somebody once was like, working with Edelman is like my favorite meeting of the day because it’s just, it’s so fun to talk to you guys.

And I think just bringing that part into the day of okay. We’re the best part of our client’s day because we’re this exciting, fun group. And we work with influencers and just bringing that back to the job is something personally that I’m trying to do more of this year. And just like resetting the tone we don’t need to kill ourselves.

We can have fun again at work. I 

[00:54:16] Jessy: love that. I love that so much. I think that’s great. And, in an environment where it is so fast-paced and you do have so many clients to deal with, you got to find the joy, and you have to maintain it. You don’t have to, but it would benefit you to do that.

I think it would make the environment so much better. I love that. That’s your goal for this year. So much, Okay. One of my last questions for you. I want to know who some of your favorite influencers are and why. Who are some people that come to mind who just like you are a big fan 

[00:54:53] Amanda: of?

Yeah. I feel like it’s like picking your favorite children. It’s always so hard. So I started. The artists worked for a big digital media company and worked with photographers and graphic designers. So that’s where I started. So I love that space. I love working with artists. I think the cool part about artist influencers is that they were a photographer first and then they started posting and they just love their craft.

So a lot of my favorites are in that space. We just worked with Morgan Harper Nichols. I don’t know if you’re familiar with her. She’s a poet. She writes a poem every single day. I love her emails. It comes in your inbox at 9 PM every night. And they’re just lovely. And I think she is one of those just genuine humans.

We just saw her in New York. Her agent’s amazing. Just like a lovely person. And I think she writes, I think she had her stories. Interesting. I think she had ADHD. This was a form of therapy for her to do art and she started sharing it. So I think looking at somebody like that, who just has that genuine passion and I just love her content.

So she’s one of my favorites. That’s like the top-of-mind one. I have so many, I just feel like it’s. Again, it’s like picking your children, but I love it, I think I have a soft spot for people in that artist space. No, I love that. 

[00:56:17] Jessy: It’s, interesting. Like sometimes you just, some of your favorite things in life, you just go back to your origins, like at the beginning, cause there’s no, there’s nothing like it.

It just goes so deep. So I think that’s awesome. I have a feeling that a lot of our listeners would love to get in touch with you and just follow you on your professional journey. So what would you say is the best way for our listeners to get in touch? Yeah, 

[00:56:42] Amanda: I love LinkedIn. I’m like a big LinkedIn person.

So I think LinkedIn is the best way to get in touch with me. I’m pretty responsive on LinkedIn. LinkedIn. I’m happy to do informational interviews, talk about Edelman, and talk about the industry. So LinkedIn is my place. 

[00:57:00] Jessy: Perfect. We will link your LinkedIn in our show notes. So keep an eye out for that guys.

Make your life a little easier. We will hyperlink it and everything. And also, if you are in the WIIM community and a member of Wim, take advantage of the mentorship program because Amanda is one of our mentors there, and if you opt into a session with her, it means you get one hour, of uninterrupted time.

To come prepared like we were talking about before and have a conversation just like this with whatever topics you want to talk about it’s such a great opportunity and I think it’s a very like It. It’s a very specific type of person who offers themselves up for that. And I’m referring to you. Yeah. Not the mentee, but the mentor.

And I just think it’s really special that you’ve signed up, to do that for our mentor or our mentees and our members. So yeah. I just wanna thank you for being a part of it and just for being on the show today and sharing so much and being so candid. It’s incredible. It’s awesome.

The work that you’re doing and the way that you approach it, I think is really special as well. So any parting words before we sign 

[00:58:15] Amanda: on? No, I think this has been fantastic. I love being a mentor. I think I’ve gotten probably more out of it than Maybe even the mentees. I think it’s just fantastic to hear from people about their experiences.

And I’ve gotten to talk to a lot of talent managers. And I think that’s been an interesting part to hear their side and just have different perspectives. So I think it’s a good reminder, to keep the networking going, keep talking to people, and you never know where it’s going to lead. So what a great note to end this on.

[00:58:46] Jessy: Awesome. Take advantage. Reach out to Amanda. Thank you so much for being on today, and thank you all for tuning in. We will see you next week. Thank you guys. If you enjoyed this episode, we gotta have you back. Check out our website for more ways to get involved, including all the information you need about joining our collective.


You can check out all the information at IamWim. com. Leave us a review, and a rating, but the most important thing that we can ask you is to That’s what I’m going to do is to share this podcast. Thanks for listening. Tune in next week.

Amanda Mizrahi

Senior Vice President, EDELMAN

Amanda is a nine year Edelman veteran on Edelman’s digital team. During her time at the company, Amanda has had the chance to work on a wide variety of clients and industries from technology to retail. Amanda has extensive digital account experience working on some of Edelman’s biggest integrated accounts such as Adobe doing work to create fully integrated campaigns aimed at bringing earned, owned, influencer and paid media together to tell one holistic story.

Amanda leads the TJX Influencer team and has nine plus years in the influencer marketing space. Amanda works with her clients to create fully integrated campaigns that bring earned, owned and influencer programs together. Her clients have include Samsung, HP, PayPal, Microsoft, Starbucks, Nestle, Barilla, Wacom, Adobe and more.

Prior to her time at Edelman, Amanda worked for the fashion company HMX where she started the brands social media channels and dipped her toe into the world of merchandising and planning/ allocation. Amanda has a Bachelors in Business Administration and a minor in communication from the George Washington University School of Business.

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