For Jillian Orcel, Senior Coordinator of Strategic Marketing Solutions at Zoom Active Lifestyle Marketing, earning her Bachelor of Arts from Boston University in Sociology (with a concentration in advertising) was her way of making sense of both her creative and analytical sides. Although Jill’s day-to-day responsibilities involve creating presentations to illustrate Zoom’s custom services and crafting unique strategies and solutions, she has a great love for photography, writing and cooking, as well as an affinity for observing the way that people connect and interact with the world. “I noticed myself picking up on different things,” she says of finding her way to the industry as a college student. “Like looking at ads and noticing ‘Hey, I love the layout of this ad’ or ‘I love the soundtrack on this commercial’ and kind of just picking out the different artistic elements of ads that I really liked. I thought that maybe I could figure out a way to tie my interests in creative expression to this industry.”
While at Boston University, Jillian got involved with AdLab, an entirely student-run advertising agency, where she worked closely with local clients to develop multiple marketing strategies. She conducted interviews with customers of a small wine shop in Waltham, Massachusetts, gathering insights on consumer habits and demographics. “It was really fun,” she says. “I got to tie [my major] into the advertising side, which was the perfect balance.”
Her role as an Account Planner and Assistant Account Executive with AdLab left her wanting to explore more aspects of advertising. Shortly thereafter Jillian expanded her knowledge working as a Marketing and Audit Intern with Addus Healthcare in Chicago. “You’re working with a local community and you really get to know the people and learn what’s important to them … and then shaping those findings into something that’s relevant for the brand,” she explained. “That was a great experience.”
Jillian’s first job was with Zoom as a Business Development Coordinator out of their New York City office. Since she began, she has continuously learned new things about the digital out-of-home marketplace. In 2015 Zoom went through a major rebrand and repositioning of its product, handing off their social nightlife, active family and outdoor mural networks in favor of a dedicated focus on the fitness and active lifestyle areas. Also that year, Jillian was promoted to her current role as the Senior Coordinator of Strategic Solutions.
“I really love our company culture,” she says. “Zoom focuses on client relationships. We work with so many different companies and it’s all about tailoring our services to meet their needs.” Jillian admits that this can sometimes be a bit of a struggle, but that the payoff of figuring out and executing an effective strategy is what excites her the most. “It’s just the greatest feeling to see that come to reality and be able to say ‘hey, this worked’ and ‘this was a great program, you should definitely do it again.’”
During her first two years with the company, Jillian concentrated on doing her job well and figuring out the best way to accomplish her tasks. Her focus has shifted to evaluating what kind of impact she can have on the company beyond her daily responsibilities. “Zoom has given me an opportunity to really grow,” she says. “You’re always learning and seeing the best ways to reach people and it’s always changing.”
Now approaching her fourth year with the company, Jillian has had the opportunity to help select new hires and has taken the lead in training the new members of her department. In her role, she has found support at Zoom as well as from her family. Her supervisor, Lorraine Pyne, is “in charge of running the entire show” and has been a great resource, yet she’ll rely on Jillian for additional help when things get hectic. “I definitely value the fact that she’s given me that level of responsibility,” Jillian reflects. Her parents aren’t as familiar with the media industry, but her uncle, Glenn Jean, has earned his stripes with the likes of Nielsen and Google. “[My uncle] definitely helps me figure out what my next steps should be … and even though I’m younger than him, he’ll reach out to me to get my opinion on things, which is nice.”
Because she’s excited by opportunities to think outside the box and implement creative ways to tackle challenging problems, Jillian would like to play more of a management role looking ahead, working more closely with the portfolios of products and brands. Her approach to reaching consumers has centered on being authentic. “When it feels like you’re being targeted, it definitely feels less genuine,” she says. “That’s why I like Zoom. When you’re in the gym, you’re someone who most likely enjoys being there and a lot of the people around you kind of share the same beliefs, like living a healthy lifestyle and being active. If you’re taking the time out of your day to go to the gym, why not connect with brands and products that share the same values?”
For anyone aspiring to enter into the advertising space, Jillian champions the idea of staying in touch with your consumer. “If you’re following the same media strategy that you had in 2008, you’re going to be way behind.” Jillian says that staying on top of the market is crucial in the fast-paced world of media.
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