When Work is a Challenge

With over 7 years of experience in the field, Sam has developed a deep understanding of influencer relations, social media, and digital marketing. She has successfully executed multiple projects, from ideation to delivery, for clients such as L'Oreal, Ferrero, Haleon, and more. She is passionate about client services and creating impactful marketing strategies that leverage the power of influencers and social media to connect with audiences and achieve business goals. In her current role at Viral Nation, she manages the execution and quality of creative campaigns for global brands across various verticals. She oversees a team of talented and diverse professionals who deliver innovative solutions that drive brand awareness, engagement, and conversion.



[00:00:00] Samantha Boulos: From an agency standpoint, I think a level of white glove service is key for retention. Just because it’s also such a competitive like market, there’s so many agencies, there’s so many marketing agencies now, so what makes you stand out? So I think that a white glove service can be done through being proactive and even just presenting new creative ideas or suggesting out of the box influencers and sharing updates about a campaign in my time.

[00:00:30] Jessy Grossman: hello, everyone. Welcome back to the Wim podcast. I am really happy to be back here with you guys. I so appreciate that last week I shared a little bit about my How do I, how do you say it? My crisis that is so dramatic about the podcast. This podcast, and just wanting to mix it up a little bit.

[00:00:57] Jessy Grossman: Change it up a little bit. Just be more candid with you guys. A little bit more personal. Anyways, I had people, multiple people reach out about it. And also like people say, I wanna co-host a show with you. I. Love that. Thank you so much for reaching out and having the balls to do that because it was like also mixed with like I don’t know if I should be reaching out or, you know, really putting myself on a limb here, but like, no, you should always do that.

[00:01:26] Jessy Grossman: You should always do that. If you want something and if it’s something that you’re interested in, like, why not? We have one life to live. So I appreciate those of you who reached out. I appreciate the words of encouragement and it’s something that I will definitely continue to think about. I also want to thank our YouTube viewers as well.

[00:01:46] Jessy Grossman: I have seen a pretty significant little spike in the people who watch us on YouTube, which I love. So please subscribe to that channel. It definitely helps us a lot. I’m learning about YouTube as a creator, like on that side of things, it is not easy. It’s very hard. Our platform that most people listen to us on is Apple Podcasts.

[00:02:09] Jessy Grossman: So for those of you there, thank you. Love ya. Subscribe just on YouTube and sometimes, you know, you want to watch the, see the facial expressions and, you know, kind of consume this on like a different level could be fun, just throwing it out there. But thank you guys on all just generally for tuning in, listening, subscribing, all the things.

[00:02:30] Jessy Grossman: Today we have a awesome guest. She is a fairly new member of WIM, but certainly not new to the industry. Her name is Samantha Boulos and she works at a awesome company called Viral Nation. she has about seven years or so of experience in the field. She’s developed a deep understanding of influencer relations, social media, and digital marketing.

[00:02:53] Jessy Grossman: She has successfully executed multiple projects from ideation to delivery for clients such as L’Oreal. Ferrero, Hallion, and more. She’s passionate about client services, which is in the role that she’s in now and creating impactful marketing strategies that leverage the power of influencers and social media to connect with the audiences and achieve her business.

[00:03:14] Jessy Grossman: goals. In her current role at Viral Nation, she manages the execution and quality of creative campaigns for global brands across the various verticals. She mentions those brands in our conversation later. She also oversees a team of talented and diverse professionals who deliver Innovative solutions that drive brand awareness, engagement, and of course, conversion.

[00:03:38] Jessy Grossman: She had, we had a very interesting conversation, a lot about like the ins and outs of when things go awry, whether it’s with a client or the job market or all sorts of scenarios. We really dug into it in this episode because it’s just so important. You guys that we. De stigmatize these things where we’re all experiencing them.

[00:03:59] Jessy Grossman: So why aren’t we talking about it more? So she gave some great advice in terms of when things go awry, how to handle it and how to come out of these situations unscathed. I’m very excited for you to listen to this episode. Again, I thank you for subscribing. We really appreciate it. Leave a review or a comment.

[00:04:18] Jessy Grossman: so much for sharing this episode. And, without further ado, this is our guest Samantha Boulos.

[00:04:28] Jessy Grossman: 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 sign up.

[00:04:49] Jessy Grossman: 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 a who’s who and influencer marketing, check out what it takes to become a member.

[00:05:09] Jessy Grossman: Make more money and have fun doing it. Visit IamWim. com slash join. That’s I A M W M. I am. com slash join today. And I so look forward to seeing you more around the community. So I’m very excited to have you here today. So Samantha, thank you so much for being here. We heard a little bit about you in the intro to the podcast, like.

[00:05:37] Jessy Grossman: You on paper, but I think it would be awesome. So just hear a little bit more like from you and your own words. So people can get to know you just about your journey to influence or marketing. Like everyone’s path is so unique and I’d love to hear more about yours. Totally. Well, firstly, 

[00:05:53] Samantha Boulos: thank you so much for having me.

[00:05:54] Samantha Boulos: I’m so excited to be chatting with you. I’ve been an influencer marketing for about seven years now. I know that influencer marketing is one of those industries where like Everyone’s verticals and like experience getting into it is so different. So excited to share mine. A little backstory for as long as I can remember, I have wanted to work in the beauty industry.

[00:06:12] Samantha Boulos: I was obsessed with all of the beauty gurus, like the Carly Bybels, Jackie Aina. I would watch hours and hours of YouTube tutorials, like makeup tutorials, like get readies with me and all of that. And this was all during a time where I wasn’t. Really even aware that I could pursue influencer marketing as a career.

[00:06:29] Samantha Boulos: I felt a little lost at times because I wanted to merge my career with my passions, but I didn’t really know what that looked like at this time as well. I was also working as an artistry coordinator for Anastasia Beverly Hills, where I would essentially go into different Sephora and Nordstrom locations.

[00:06:44] Samantha Boulos: So yeah, so this experience really helped me jump into the corporate world. And then after my undergrad, I was fortunate enough to secure a role with the skincare brand Farsali. I’m not sure if you’re familiar with it, but I was basically the first person on their marketing team. And then within this role, I owned all of their social media activity.

[00:07:00] Samantha Boulos: For those not aware of Farsali, they were like the skincare droppers that were like really popular on like Instagram, like IGTV and all that back in the day. But Farsali really was a pioneer in the beauty industry as one of those like Instagrammable brands with. Viral products and a really hyper engaged cult following.

[00:07:16] Samantha Boulos: So naturally influencer outreach and those influencer partnerships kind of flourish as the brand grew so rapidly. And before I knew it, I was just fully immersed in the influencer marketing space. So it wasn’t necessarily something that I sought out, but it kind of just presented itself and I was like, wow, I really like this.

[00:07:31] Samantha Boulos: And yeah, from there I had enough experience under my belt to kind of move around to different brands and eventually moved to working to more on the agency side after being kind of brand direct for so long. And. Yeah, 

[00:07:41] Jessy Grossman: that’s really how I got into it. And so now you’re at this wonderful company, Viral Nation, and I don’t know, tell us, most people listening have heard of Viral Nation, are probably even familiar with Viral Nation, but let’s like level set for everybody, like tell us a little bit more about like the awesome work you guys are currently doing.

[00:07:58] Jessy Grossman: Yeah, so I recently 

[00:07:59] Samantha Boulos: started a role with Viral Nation at the end of last year, and they are a leading marketing and talent agency with really an amazing portfolio of clients and influencers. I sit more on the client services side of things. So overseeing influencer marketing activity and a bit of like studio and production work.

[00:08:14] Samantha Boulos: And it’s been really great so far. Even like I naively, when I interviewed for the position, I thought that they were just a talent agency that kind of did one off campaigns. They really are full service. They have an entire studio and production team. And then there’s like, of course, like the talent side of things that they do, like brand lift studies and paid media and so many things.

[00:08:32] Samantha Boulos: And yeah, they have some really great accounts on the side of the business. So it’s been really great so far. I’m really enjoying it. 

[00:08:37] Jessy Grossman: Can you share some of the accounts that you guys work with? I think people would love to hear like some of the brands that you guys work with. And of course on 

[00:08:45] Samantha Boulos: my side, so I’m set up kind of like on the Canadian sector, which is also pretty new for me, but.

[00:08:49] Samantha Boulos: 7 Eleven is actually one of the biggest accounts, which is not necessarily in my vertical, but it’s so much fun. They can be really cheeky on social media, and like the creative content that we make as well is just so exciting. Like Instacart, Elf Cosmetics is a huge one, and yeah, they really touch on all verticals.

[00:09:05] Samantha Boulos: So it’s been really good, and it’s really great getting exposed to all these different accounts that Maybe you wouldn’t have if you were working brand direct. 

[00:09:12] Jessy Grossman: Yeah, for sure. It gives you so much variety. It gives you all this experience that I’m sure like no day is ever the same and it’s fun. So you shared earlier that like you just recently started there and I think that a lot of people can.

[00:09:25] Jessy Grossman: relate to that job hunt, that job search, like trying to find their next big deal, their next topic deal, their next big role for the next step in their career. So what advice would you give to those who are looking for the next great role in the creator economy? But are just struggling with this wild job market that we’re currently in.

[00:09:47] Jessy Grossman: Yeah, 

[00:09:47] Samantha Boulos: I know. That’s a great question. I understand that now more than ever, the job market is really brutal and very competitive. So I have a lot of empathy for those who are actively seeking new opportunities in this space, especially influencer marketing, because it is. Still a little bit niche. I unfortunately was laid off during the pandemic.

[00:10:02] Samantha Boulos: And what helped me the most was taking advantage of social media and networking as much as I could, which I know is very repetitive and people hear that a lot, but whether it’s joining, you know, like different online communities, such as women in influencer marketing, or even just reaching out to people on LinkedIn who are like minded and work for.

[00:10:18] Samantha Boulos: You know, a company of interest and setting up a 15 minute coffee chat that’ll really only improve your chances. I also understand that applying for jobs is a full time job itself and it can be really exhausting. So, I would always advise just prioritizing your mental health and take the pressure off of having to secure your dream job.

[00:10:34] Samantha Boulos: I would never suggest settling in your career but taking a chance on a new opportunity, perhaps in a new vertical or. Stepping outside of your comfort zone will only help you grow and build your skill set. And then in addition to networking and exploring different niches, I think freelancing is a really great way to build your professional relationship.

[00:10:49] Samantha Boulos: So if you could do that, even while you do have the luxury of being fully employed, or hopefully that can kind of carry in the case that, you know, you leave your current role and of course will benefit you in a financial capacity. So. 

[00:10:59] Jessy Grossman: Nothing wrong with that. That has been such a trend that I’ve been seeing.

[00:11:03] Jessy Grossman: We’re even like, we’re having an event later this month in April all about freelancing and the creator economy because so many people have either left on their own accord their big corporate jobs or been let go. And they’re like, well, I want to continue learning. I want to continue working. And like, I want to maybe have more control over my destiny while I’m sitting here possibly interviewing for other people.

[00:11:25] Jessy Grossman: And a lot of people, some people haven’t gone back to their corporate jobs. Like some people really loved that life. So it’s certainly a trend that we’ve seen as well. But I’d love to hear a little bit more about like the mindset part of being in between jobs. Like you said, you were part of layoffs and I feel like I don’t know.

[00:11:46] Jessy Grossman: There was such a small percentage of people who have ever even experienced that in their life. And nowadays that’s like a really common occurrence where you go to work, you do your best and you’re legitimately doing a great job. And some, in most instances, there’s just not enough money to go around or they just need to make cuts in some capacity.

[00:12:06] Jessy Grossman: And it’s like a mind fuck a little bit, I’m sure to, you know, be doing a fantastic job and then to be laid off. It’s a really scary time, but. I think it’s important that all of us, like, really stay focused and like remain having perspective. And I’m just curious, like, how did you really get through that?

[00:12:25] Jessy Grossman: Like, what was it like for you and did you struggle or were you able to pretty successfully get through that? 

[00:12:32] Samantha Boulos: Yeah, no, I absolutely. I mean, I felt traumatized and it was so caught off guard. It really like. And also it’s like going through a breakup and getting broken up with, because it’s like, this is not mutual.

[00:12:41] Samantha Boulos: I don’t want this. I dedicated so much time and energy into this. I was so excited to start. So yeah, it is really hard. I mean, I think with, you know, social media now and like LinkedIn and people being more transparent and candid on TikTok and Instagram, I think it, it almost, I was really embarrassed when it happened to me, to be honest, because I had shared with so many people, like, I got this job.

[00:12:59] Samantha Boulos: I’m so excited. We’re in the middle of a pandemic and I’m working from home now and this is so cool. And then getting laid off, I was embarrassed because I had affiliated my career with my identity for so long. I was like, well, I work in influencer marketing and I work in the beauty industry and I’m so cool and I get to post about it.

[00:13:13] Samantha Boulos: And then when I lost that, I’m like, well, what am I, doing? And I think that when it comes to your mental health, you have to be strategic with your thinking. And of course, that’s a luxury. I know that’s easier said than done, but. I think knowing that you’re not alone and that there are so many people out there who have been through it and there’s so many communities and at the end of the day, what’s meant for you will happen.

[00:13:32] Samantha Boulos: I even look back at the job that I lost thinking that it was my dream job and I just look and I’m like, I’m so much happier now with where I am and of course it’s really discouraging, but I think just being transparent and You know, trying to get ahead of like networking and talking to people about it, I think will only help you kind of get out of that rut.

[00:13:48] Samantha Boulos: From a financial standpoint, of course, it’s less than ideal. And I unfortunately don’t have that much advice on how to get over that because I know that’s like a mentally taxing thing. But yeah, I think don’t ever take anything for granted, like even with your current role, like try to do things that save money and do things in your current job just in case that unfortunately happens.

[00:14:05] Samantha Boulos: but yeah, I think it’s really important to just be transparent and connect with people as much as you can. And I 

[00:14:09] Jessy Grossman: appreciate you saying that too, because I think that, you know, for many people who haven’t been affected by it, like there is stuff that they can be doing actively to have like an insurance policy, so to speak, for the case that it might happen, it could happen to anybody in these, like this day and age.

[00:14:26] Jessy Grossman: So. I appreciate you saying that, like put a little extra money aside, you know, have a contingency plan, have a backup. Like every business is a little different. Some people don’t let you have work on the side, but if you can like establish maybe your own sort of like personal brand side from your company, if they’re okay with it, cause I don’t want anyone to get in trouble.

[00:14:46] Jessy Grossman: Like it’s just all like an insurance policy, which I think is really smart and we need to protect ourselves. But speaking of protecting ourselves, we discussed prior to our chat now about how you feel very strongly and rightfully so about just like toxic work environments. And we’re talking about a lot of just, I don’t know, things that a lot of people can relate to today, but maybe not everybody wants to talk about.

[00:15:12] Jessy Grossman: But since so much of us relate to it, we need to like. De stigmatize these things. That’s so important. So I’d love for you to share. Is there any advice that you would give to somebody who’s in a toxic work environment, listening to this? In order for them to come out of the situation unscathed. 

[00:15:30] Samantha Boulos: Yeah, absolutely.

[00:15:31] Samantha Boulos: And I think, I mean, even like I just said prior, like I’m just seeing so much transparency on social media. Like I opened my TikTok, my 4U pages, people being like, my boss micromanages me, here’s four tips on how to reply back. And I just love that it’s being brought to light now because I feel like so many companies are actually like this and it’s not talked about.

[00:15:49] Samantha Boulos: And unfortunately, toxic work environments are not always something that can be detected during the interview process. We may find ourselves in that situation unknowingly. The best advice that I can give is to protect yourself, and I mean this legally and mentally. If you find that the way that business operates is toxic or if you’re being mistreated directly, you ultimately should begin the process of seeking employment elsewhere because I don’t think that any job is worth that.

[00:16:12] Samantha Boulos: But in the meantime, I know that it’s not easy to just go get a new job tomorrow, I would highly suggest just documenting everything, create a paper trail, this will help you protect yourself so you have evidence of everybody’s interactions in the case that there is an unjustified termination, and I know that’s kind of being a little bit extreme, but I think it’s really important to make sure that you’re documenting things, and then when it comes to your mental health, I think perspective is so important, kind of like I mentioned before, Nine times out of 10 in a toxic work environment, nothing is personal.

[00:16:40] Samantha Boulos: And these issues are within the business more at like a senior leadership level, and they just seem to be trickling down to you. And I think it’s always important that you remember that you’re not being paid to stress outside of work hours. So I would suggest that you show up on time, you do your best work with good intentions, get your work done, sign off because your personal time is valuable and no job should ever really be controlling your life.

[00:17:03] Jessy Grossman: No, I mean, if anything, you know, it’s interesting cause I really resonated with what you said earlier about like. Really intertwining your identity with your career that like really hit hard. And I feel like a lot of people might relate to that as well. So it can be challenging to check out at the end of the day and sort of separate maybe personal and work life.

[00:17:22] Jessy Grossman: At least it is for me. But I can imagine in this, for the sake of, like, preservation, if you’re in a bad work environment, you almost have to, because you don’t want that sort of a thing to seep into your, like, precious, like, sacred time when you’re away from work. So, it’s hard to compartmentalize these things.

[00:17:43] Jessy Grossman: Like, sometimes we go home and just Get it all out because hey, we can’t really do that at work if things are not going well But I can totally appreciate that for sure quick question for you guys. How much do you love redlining agreements? Yeah, me too Let me tell you about our latest sponsor called caveat so caveat with K is an AI powered contracting platform that simplifies and 

[00:18:11] Samantha Boulos: optimizes Automates your contracts.

[00:18:14] Samantha Boulos: It’ll hugely improve the way 

[00:18:16] Jessy Grossman: that you review partnership agreements. So if you’re a media company or an entertainment company or a management firm, it’s a must 

[00:18:25] Samantha Boulos: have tool. Look, sometimes you do 

[00:18:27] Jessy Grossman: need to hire a lawyer, an expensive lawyer nonetheless, to work on an agreement because it’s over a certain threshold and a good lawyer can be invaluable.

[00:18:35] Samantha Boulos: But 

[00:18:37] Jessy Grossman: what about all those other partnerships, those other contracts that are

[00:18:45] Jessy Grossman: That’s where caveat comes in to support you and your team through AI to process your contracts to gain a competitive edge with data driven insights and automatic AI driven red lines. It’s game changing tech and it’s founded by three brilliant women. So you know why I’m out here supporting it. Get time back in your day because caveat will help you with the part of your business.

[00:19:10] Jessy Grossman: That may be your least favorite. So head to our website. It’s Iamwim. com slash caveat for a completely free trial. That’s I A M W I M. com slash K A V E A T. I hope you guys love it as much as I do. And then I think a lot of people talk about having a difficult time. With clients as well. And if anyone has worked certainly at an agency where there are more clients than just, you know, one in house client, it can be a challenge.

[00:19:45] Jessy Grossman: I’ve heard countless stories from people and they always blow my mind. Like every time I hear them, I’m like, no way. Like, I can’t believe that I was even worse than the last story I heard. It’s, I really hope this like, just this toxic interpersonal relationship cycle, I really hope by having people talk about it more and these things that you’re saying that you’re seeing on social media as well, like I hope that it like eradicates this, but like in the meantime, people will be people and I’m curious from your perspective, any advice on how to navigate delicate situations when it’s a client that it’s like extra confusing because You’re there to please the client, quote unquote.

[00:20:27] Jessy Grossman: What did, what, you know, what experience do you have? You don’t have to share names, obviously, but any advice or thoughts on that? 

[00:20:34] Samantha Boulos: Yeah, I mean, as much as I would love to share names and really just go in, I won’t. Yeah, of course. I think that with clients, it’s tricky because you’re not going to go to HR and say like, Oh, this client’s, you know, being passive aggressive with me because at the end of the day, there is that power dynamic and this hierarchy, if you will, of like, yeah, you have to please them.

[00:20:49] Samantha Boulos: They’re paying you for a service. But if a client is unhappy. This often stems from unaligned expectations and maybe not adhering to what they were under the impression that they were receiving. But on the counter, I do also understand that there are clients who just have difficult ways of working and seem to overcomplicate things.

[00:21:06] Samantha Boulos: In this situation, I think that transparency is key. Shedding light on like the workflows and the complexity of fulfilling certain things may make the client have more of an appreciation for the time and the effort that’s dedicated to fulfilling a task. And although there needs to be a great level of service to your client, it’s okay to push back.

[00:21:24] Samantha Boulos: They are paying you to complete a service. And if something cannot be executed. In a high quality fashion, or if it will not actually benefit the client, pushing back with context in a better recommendation will only build their trust and respect for you. I 

[00:21:37] Jessy Grossman: love that you said that. And you know, look, there’s a lot of women out there who are people pleasers and or, you know, afraid to speak up.

[00:21:47] Jessy Grossman: And the fear I would assume is that by speaking up or by pushing back, especially like that’s just not going to be received well, like that would be like the last thing you should do, but I cannot agree with you more, which is just in my experience. And it sounds like in yours as well, when you have pushed back, but like you said, with context, with explanation, with possibly also a solution in hand as well.

[00:22:13] Jessy Grossman: It really like builds the relationship up even more than where it started because now there’s like this underlying additional level. of respect and you’ve really truly helped them see something that they weren’t seeing before. And I think like clients can be tricky and you know, the word client can mean completely different ends of the spectrum depending on where you sit in the creator economy, right?

[00:22:37] Jessy Grossman: Because You know, when you work at an agency that a company that does both of if your manager, your client is the influencer, and if you’re a brand facing, your client is the brand, they all have their nuances. Why? Because like they’re all human beings. And if you’re in the business of working with people like it’s a very complex business to be in.

[00:22:56] Jessy Grossman: So conversely, I’m curious, like now, especially that you’re in like a client services role, what advice do you have for retaining clients, like building those client relationships, like what either have you seen worked for other people that you aspire to do or things that have just worked for you firsthand?

[00:23:14] Samantha Boulos: Yeah, I mean, I think similarly to kind of the same point that I had earlier, I think just like any successful relationship in your life, whether it’s a friend or whatever, a strong client relationship is built on trust and communication. And one thing that’s really stood out to me is I’ve learned that saying yes is not a skill.

[00:23:30] Samantha Boulos: If it cannot be done with quality, do not agree to it. Essentially don’t over promise and under deliver. You should be doing the exact opposite. And this is where, you know, like if a client’s unhappy, it’s probably because there’s unaligned expectations and they’re, they have an idea of something that’s just not being delivered.

[00:23:45] Samantha Boulos: From an agency standpoint, I think a level of white glove services is key for retention. Just because it’s also such a competitive market, like market. There’s so many, there’s so many agencies, there’s so many marketing agencies now. So what makes you stand out? So I think that a white glove service can be done through being proactive and even just presenting new creative ideas or suggesting.

[00:24:05] Samantha Boulos: Out of the box influencers and sharing updates about a campaign in live time. Anything that kind of sits as a value add that maybe is out of scope and is a light lift for you will 

[00:24:15] Jessy Grossman: go a long way. I’d also love to talk about time management a little bit. So I candidly have never been on the brand facing side.

[00:24:22] Jessy Grossman: I’ve only represented talent before. I’m always like very curious about the other side, the one that I’m not as familiar with. And so. When you tell me that like white glove service is what can distinguish you from client to client or from their perspective, from, you know, potential people to service them, I think of how much time that could take.

[00:24:41] Jessy Grossman: And then I think like, well, what do you do when there’s a client who’s like a little more needy than another, or you just simply like are at full bandwidth and you’re just like, how do I delegate, like relegate my time? Time. How do you, like, I think a proper part of it is probably just prioritization, managing.

[00:25:01] Jessy Grossman: I’m just curious, like, how you wrap your head around that. Yeah, of course. 

[00:25:05] Samantha Boulos: I think it also kind of depends on the size of the agency. I’ve worked with startup agencies and I’m now at a much bigger one and I’m seeing kind of those still, like, fundamental issues with time management. I think timelines, and it sounds so simple, but are so important and making sure that they’re visible to the client as well.

[00:25:22] Samantha Boulos: And kind of seeing if the client is a little bit more needy and needs hand holding and takes a lot of time to review things. That’s okay, but you need to bake that into your timeline. And I think also, in addition to a timeline, there should also be a few sections that also highlights what was the due date and then what was the deadline.

[00:25:37] Samantha Boulos: The actual date that it was delivered so that you can see the discrepancy in time and be transparent with them. Okay, well, we had a bottleneck here because it took you seven days to review a piece of content when it should have only been two. So that’s why the campaign is being pushed back. And I think just having that level of transparency and also holding them accountable is so important.

[00:25:55] Samantha Boulos: And yeah, and I think if a client presents like, Hey, you know, we have a product launch on this date and content has to go live on this date, it’s a tenfold. Okay, give us that date and we’ll create a work back schedule and this is what it’s going to look like to deliver, but you have to adhere to these dates or else it’s just not going to get done.

[00:26:10] Samantha Boulos: And I think that level of transparency is so important. 

[00:26:12] Jessy Grossman: Have you ever had someone respond negatively when you’ve been transparent? Cause I think that like. That would be the advice that I would give too. I’m just always thinking of like, how can we maybe prepare someone who’s even like wanting to take this advice listening now, but like, how can we prepare them for the off chance that it goes wrong?

[00:26:29] Jessy Grossman: Like, what can you do if the other side pushes back? Have you ever experienced that before? Truthfully, 

[00:26:35] Samantha Boulos: I’ve experienced a little bit of defensiveness and just calling them out like, Hey, you know what? Like we’re seeing a holdup here and can we keep things moving? But I’ve never had a really like a very negative response, but I think that’s because.

[00:26:46] Samantha Boulos: Communication has always been consistent. I think that if you’re talking to your client once a week and then, you know, show them this and say, oh, look, we’re delayed because of you, then of course they’re going to, they’re going to be surprised and they’re probably going to be offended, but you need to be speaking to your clients daily, keeping them updated.

[00:27:00] Samantha Boulos: Hey, just a reminder, we need your feedback on this. Let us know if you want to schedule a call so we can go through it together and, you know, get this over the line. I think there needs to be a level of consistency and communication so that they’re very aware of the timelines. I think. If you’re not doing that, of course, they’re going to be upset and they’re probably going to try to shift blame.

[00:27:16] Samantha Boulos: But yeah, I think it’s important just to be very consistent so that nothing slips through the cracks. 

[00:27:20] Jessy Grossman: Yeah, no, I can appreciate that. I also think, like, a lot of people are email first people, and I think that so much can get lost in translation through email. Email. And I also think that, you know, in a client service position, you’re always trying to build that relationship.

[00:27:37] Jessy Grossman: And so the first choice is to ever occasionally meet with them in person, like in a pretty like low key, low stakes and environment where it’s like, let’s just grab coffee. I’d love to just like get to know you as a human being, but that’s not always possible. People are everywhere now. And so. Maybe conversely, like not conversely, but secondarily, like the priority would probably next to be just hopping on a phone call, you know, a video call would be even better because I feel like you can ring people, get a sense of who they are.

[00:28:05] Jessy Grossman: But I also think that as women, especially like we also need to learn to trust our gut. And if you feel like something is a little off, you feel like something is wrong or something is just off. Like it is always beneficial to get ahead of that. So, I feel like some people will, like, stew on it, you know, be like, maybe I’m wrong, like, or maybe it’ll get better.

[00:28:27] Jessy Grossman: But I find that, like, to your point about transparency and overcommunication, Just calling it, not calling it out in a bad way, but just acknowledging and sensing a little something like, I just want to check it and make sure we’re on the same page and we’re all copacetic. And just the more that it lingers, I feel like that 

[00:28:46] Samantha Boulos: can be, like, just knowing like how, like the stakes are so high with a client relationship.

[00:28:50] Samantha Boulos: It’s so easy to just gaslight yourself and think, Oh, I’m the problem. Like I must’ve been the reason why this slipped through the cracks. Yeah, no, I do think that it’s really important to be consistent in that sense. An example is a client who I’ve experienced who, they have a really big team. So there’s a lot, there’s a rigorous approval process.

[00:29:06] Samantha Boulos: So we had a weekly standing status call where we check in on all things. Around the times where a lot of things are moving and we have, you know, campaigns going live and we have shoots coming up, we’ll have two status calls a week. And that way it’s at the top of the week, connect at the end of the week, make sure that everything’s good.

[00:29:22] Samantha Boulos: And then there’s emails in between. But to your point, email alone just does not suffice. There might be like 150. Like conversations in one thread, like things are bound to get lost. So yeah, I think any opportunity, of course, meeting up with them would be absolutely great. And it also just kind of helps build that relationship as well.

[00:29:38] Samantha Boulos: I’m 

[00:29:38] Jessy Grossman: curious too, like as someone who is in this sort of like client services role, like what are some of your favorite parts of the job? Like, why is this the choice for you in terms of like, This was the next step in your career. What like lights you up about it? Yeah, it’s funny 

[00:29:54] Samantha Boulos: because I, again, like I, I worked brand direct and I worked with a lot of vendors and I, you know, being the one on the brand side, like I always had a really good relationship with them and as I kind of work more with influencers directly, I thought that my career path was going to be influencer, like talent management, that’s always where I saw myself, but yeah, being on the agency side, I really just fell in love with the idea of working with multiple brands at a time, I think it’s so exciting.

[00:30:15] Samantha Boulos: And being. Sitting as kind of like the expert in the field, if you will, be with an agency, that’s kind of how you’re viewed. It’s been a really enjoyable working with clients and, educating them and also helping them look good to their bosses, if that makes sense. Because at the end of the day, like the marketing teams that you’re working with directly for a brand, like they’re the ones who are, you know, kind of a representation of the work that gets done.

[00:30:37] Samantha Boulos: So I think it’s been really exciting, kind of just seeing something come to life and then making. A brand so happy or look so good or be so successful and then doing that multiple times for different accounts is, really rewarding. I’m a very creative person and I love to be kind of on the supporting side of briefing and creating content.

[00:30:54] Samantha Boulos: So being able to do that across many different verticals and then also building relationships with such cool accounts has just been so exciting. Yeah, I see myself staying in client services for quite a 

[00:31:03] Jessy Grossman: bit. I love that. And you do have some cool accounts. Like, not everyone’s as lucky. I’ve heard some people work with like some prescription medication or like some boring CPG products.

[00:31:12] Jessy Grossman: And like, they’ll find the joy in that, hopefully. But you have some really cool accounts. So that is a good thing. And I think that’s interesting, right? Because When you’re interviewing for a new job in this sort of a position where your clients can vary, I would assume that it would be smart to dig into a little bit of like, who would my clients be and the nuances of that, because.

[00:31:35] Jessy Grossman: We’re very used to being interviewed and not necessarily interviewing the interviewer All the time when we’re looking for a role and I think that’s also important These are the people that you’re gonna be dealing with on a daily basis, maybe even more than your colleagues in some cases But speaking of the job market again, like it’s so interesting because women dominate our industry in terms of numbers, in terms of like how many of us are in it and percentage of that, but we still struggle to make the same amount in terms of comp numbers and comp dollars, and we struggle to be supported when growing a family and taking a mat leave and, you know, asking for what we’re worth, for example.

[00:32:19] Jessy Grossman: So. I’m just curious. Such a broad question, but I’d love to get your take on it. Like, how do you think women can proactively help themselves in their careers? 

[00:32:28] Samantha Boulos: Yeah, no, that’s, a really great question. There was a point, I mean, very early in my career where I, like many other women, struggled to advocate for myself and I would just settle and just be, I’m so grateful to be here.

[00:32:39] Samantha Boulos: You know, just kind of overlook those things, but I will say that I’ve reached a point in both my career and my personal life where not only do I recognize my value, but I believe in my value. And I think when negotiating your salary or whether it’s roles and responsibilities of your job, maternity leave, mental health resources, whatever it may be, understand that the only person responsible for advocating for you is yourself.

[00:33:03] Samantha Boulos: If you want something because you believe that you deserve it, there, there is power in that and you would be doing yourself a disservice by not exploring different terms and really just ask them for what you want. If you don’t ask, the answer is no, of 

[00:33:15] Jessy Grossman: course. Yeah, I love that. I just, it really comes from like this deep seated, like rooted, basically like how you feel in terms of how, what you’re worth.

[00:33:26] Jessy Grossman: They have entire books dedicated just to that, conferences dedicated to that. I’ve personally read them and attended them, so I can vouch. And I think that’s a good point because it’s really more than just like a superficial, like, way of pursuing it. It’s not a Band Aid that you could just slap on to really deep down, if you believe it.

[00:33:50] Jessy Grossman: It’s going to have more likelihood to become your reality. And that takes time. That’s not something that happens overnight. That takes practice because that’s not something that just like happens naturally or easily for most people. So I appreciate you saying that. And my last question is just how can our listeners find you to get in touch?

[00:34:11] Jessy Grossman: It’s been awesome chatting with you and I’m sure people want to learn more. So what’s the best way for them to connect with you? Yeah, absolutely. 

[00:34:18] Samantha Boulos: I’m very active on Instagram. My Instagram handle is just my name, Sam Boulos, my LinkedIn, but I’m always looking to connect with people in the influencer marketing space or just marketing in general.

[00:34:27] Samantha Boulos: And I’m always open to. A virtual conversation, or if you’re in Toronto, then of course an in person, but yeah, please reach out and chat if you’re interested. 

[00:34:35] Jessy Grossman: I would love to. I love that so much, and we will link your Instagram in the show notes so everyone can reach out and connect. I so appreciate you being on today.

[00:34:42] Jessy Grossman: It’s such a really cool conversation. Any parting words for our listeners? Well, this was great. 

[00:34:48] Samantha Boulos: Thank you. Thank you so much. Yeah, I’ve been a part of Illumina Influencer Marketing for like a few weeks now, maybe a month, and it’s been wonderful, so I would highly recommend joining. There’s so many resources, and yeah, really looking forward to continuing 

[00:34:59] Jessy Grossman: and connecting with more people.

[00:35:00] Jessy Grossman: And so Sam is a member, which means that you can also just send her a DM in our Slack, and she’s easily accessible and happy to connect that way. If you’re not a member, Instagram is the best place, so. Thank you so much for joining. Love your perspective. Love your career path and thank you guys for listening.

[00:35:17] Jessy Grossman: We’ll see you next week. Thank you. If you enjoyed this episode, we got to 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, 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.

[00:35:40] Jessy Grossman: Thanks for listening. Tune in next week.

Samantha Boulos

Account Supervisor, Influencer Marketing, VIRAL NATION

With over 7 years of experience in the field, Sam has developed a deep understanding of influencer relations, social media, and digital marketing. She has successfully executed multiple projects, from ideation to delivery, for clients such as L’Oreal, Ferrero, Haleon, and more. She is passionate about client services and creating impactful marketing strategies that leverage the power of influencers and social media to connect with audiences and achieve business goals.

In her current role at Viral Nation, she manages the execution and quality of creative campaigns for global brands across various verticals. She oversees a team of talented and diverse professionals who deliver innovative solutions that drive brand awareness, engagement, and conversion.

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