Alumni Spotlight

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Suryabala (1)

Suryabala Shenbagamurthy is a January 2016 graduate of NYU School of Professional Studies, where she graduated with an MS in Public Relations and Corporate Communications.  Currently, she works as Search and Digital Planner at The Media Store, Sydney. 
What’s your favorite part of your work?
The social environment. I am a people person, and being a part of a media agency in Sydney, I enjoy interacting with luxury automobile market leaders like Lexus and publishers like Facebook on a daily basis. And there is a lot of diversity in the industry presenting opportunities to meet people with rich experience from different parts of the world. I also love my work culture which includes casual Friday drinks at work, birthday celebrations, and other similar activities that help build a strong friendship among colleagues.

What’s the most challenging part of your job?
Managing clients. I primarily work on Lexus media strategy in Australia and support digital campaigns for a few other accounts including a tech startup, tourism, and beauty client. Each client has a different working process, and sometimes it can be difficult to manage their expectations. I take a collaborative effort with proper communication strategy to successfully work with them and play to their strengths.

What does your average day look like?
A lot of internal and external client meetings, digital campaign setup and implementation coordinating with the creative agency, and presenting client media recommendations. I also work on budget reconciliation when there’s a need. Apart from that I attend my agency organized training sessions to improve managerial skills. And occasionally I join a publishers like LinkedIn’s brunch or lunch plans to build our partnership and learn more about their digital inventories.

What advice do you have for current students looking for jobs in your industry?
Be proactive. If you are passionate about social media, then become an Instagram or YouTube influencer to showcase your talent in job interviews. Interested in a digital advertising role? Take the free Google AdWords certification course online. Don’t wait for a job title to recognize your expertise.

What are some common misconceptions about your work?
Creative development. People who are not familiar with the industry assume that digital media planners are creative and develop digital assets too, i.e., beautiful images, videos that are used in Facebook and YouTube campaigns. Another misconception is that digital planners manage organic social media channels.