The Intern Diaries, Part IV

Posted on July 12, 2010 by DeAnne Bradley

Who said you can’t use your journalism experience in the field of PR? I had the opportunity to use my reporting skills, à la Robin Roberts, as Marian Salzman called me, for a one-on-one conversation with Marian, president of Euro RSCG Worldwide PR, North America. She got a peek into my Intern Diaries and decided to share her voice for this special entry. I’m sure you will find her words useful.

Q: Could you explain what you meant when you tweeted me “Make plenty of smart noise.”?
A: We like the positive disruption of young minds.

Do you mind elaborating?
We need to have various viewpoints and fewer rules.

Assuming you did that while climbing your way to the top of the industry, how did you build a reputation for yourself as the go-to trend forecaster?
I started off by just being the hardest-working, most curious person I could be and was very very lucky: right place, right time and ultimately smart forecasts. But some of it was humility. I was once a maid and a waitress, so no job was beneath me, and I learned from every role.

What did you get from being a waitress and a maid that you still use to this day?
I can mop up a mess, dig into any project as if it was spring cleaning and juggle four main plates. I also know that managing expectations means better tips.

What do you suggest others do to help build a balanced personal and professional brand for themselves?
A community, your community, needs to fit into your agenda. Degrees of involvement, etc. Different people need different things. I always needed travel, and spice and change.

You’re very active in your community. The Stamford Advocate, your local paper, recently published a story about one of your marketing initiatives, The Sisterhood. How did you come up with that concept?
I was watching a friend’s two daughters communicate—a special intimacy—and they speak to each other in a way that breaks through the clutter. This is what marketers dream of, that kind of closeness. One of the two sisters helped me to refine it further.

Do you believe social media is a fad, or could it be a lasting trend creating an efficiency in social impact and brand relevance?
Social media will be like air: everywhere and vital. It won’t be media but new social styles. The old media formats are being replaced by socializing, one-to-one, three-to-one. Media is now all about you and me: mycasting.

Is this one of your forecasts?
Forecast, or an assumption.

What has been your most popular prediction that has become a reality? Any new ones?
Metrosexuals is the most famous. Prime crisis is the most accurate—loss of faith in consumerism because real estate isn’t a viable investment and the middle class has lost its liquidity…. Homes are now burdens. We have renters’ envy.

Your website lists “born-again” lifestyles as a cultural trend prediction. Are you a born-again anything?
Born-again lazy. *with a smile* Born-again local.

How would you describe your newfound localness?
Local hair color. Local farmers market. Local politics.

Awesome. What advice would you give to those still struggling to find their niche, so that maybe they too can go from waiter to president or intern to owner?
Be patient. Work hard. Pick the right bosses. Follow your gut, and don’t take your career too seriously. Focus on the learning.

Anything else you want to tell the readers of the Intern Diaries? Any intern dos and don’ts?
Don’t minimize the network. Don’t take it carelessly, but do any job that comes along.

Thanks so much, Marian! I can’t wait for the world to see what you have to say. After all, it is your job to teach and ours to learn.
Nope, I am learning…but thank you.

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