Feb 23 2010
These spotlights are opportunities for you to get to know some individuals who were recommended to me for the article I recently wrote for Mashable, 4 Essential Traits for Social Media Success in Your Career. The purpose of my project, detailed here, is to profile some social media professionals to keep an eye on in the coming year.
Spotlight: Kaitlyn Wilkins
Title: VP of Digital Strategy – 360 Digital Influence Group
Employer: Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide
Who paid it forward: David Armano
What David had to say about Kaitlyn: “…she’s making a great deal of headway at Ogilvy with clients and also training their global employee base.”
When Kaityn was in college, ‘social media’ as we know it didn’t exist. Social networking was all about Friendster, YouTube didn’t exist, and Napster was the latest craze. Kaitlyn graduated from Wellesley College with a degree in International Relations – not exactly what you’d expect for someone who would eventually enter the social media world. But like many others, she accidentally stumbled into it. Kaitlyn had moved from Boston to DC, and her boss connected her with a few of his local contacts. One was a boutique word-of-mouth marketing shop – and after a few months there she was totally hooked. After a few years, major agencies were starting their own in-house social media teams and so she took a great opportunity with Ogilvy’s 360 Digital Influence Group. She says that her default work mode is a pace that many find frenetic – so social media really suits her well. It’s constantly changing, and you have to keep up to stay competitive. Kaitlyn says that she really digs being on the bleeding edge – and social media is something she loves both professionally and personally because of the way it’s redefined communication between people.
Why Kaitlyn believes David recommended her: Kaitlyn jokes that it was probably because of her rock star social media karaoke skills that have been on display at bars from Austin to Chicago to multiple ports on the Eastern seaboard. (Kaitlyn, I love karaoke too, and should we ever find ourselves at the same event, I’d love to challenge you to a sing-off… hehe) Yet in all seriousness, the tweet ups/meet ups that she frequents have allowed her to take her professional passion offline and geek out with people who have similar interests as she. At the end of the day it’s always about who you really know – and she feels fortunate to become true friends with a great group of people whom she respects, and it would appear they respect her back.
What Kaitlyn loves about social media: During the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics, Kaitlyn got to work with Lenovo, an Ogilvy client, on the Voices of the Olympic Games campaign. She says one of the few things she loves more than social media is the Olympics and working on this project, where 100 athletes from 25 countries were given laptops and their blogs and multimedia content were aggregated throughout the Games, allowed her to blend the two. When reflecting on the experience, she said it was a real thrill to travel to Beijing and be one of the first people to execute an Olympic social media effort. This campaign really let her cut her teeth on executing a successful global campaign.
Where Kaitlyn sees social media going in the future: Kaitlyn specifically noted that she believes Facebook will become a ‘social web outpost’. Facebook functionality has gotten to a place where brands can skillfully use the platform as a hub for all their social activities. Look for brands to really start knocking their Facebook presences out of the park in 2010. She also believes we will see enterprise change – many major corporations are ready to to adopt a social brand framework and re-think the way they approach marketing, communications, CRM and more. She says we are starting to get beyond the pilot programs and social media ‘experiments’, though there are of course still a huge number of companies still looking for these types of programs to unlock budgets and prove effectiveness.
Connect with Kaitlyn on: