How to Get a Job in Marketing, According to Olly's Marketing Manager

October 28, 2019
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This post is in partnership with OLLY.

How many times have you peered voyeuristically into the lives of people you admire via social media, video, or published interviews and wondered what it must be like to do their job? We’ve all been down that research rabbit hole on our quest to create and cultivate the career of our dreams but often we’re still left pondering about the realities of their day-to-day—so, what is it really like? Well in this series, I Want Your Job we uncover the truth by getting down to the nitty-gritty on what it’s actually like to work in your quote-unquote “dream job” and if the reality stacks up to the expectation.

Passion. We all have it, but so many of us feel as though we can’t dive into what brings us joy because it doesn’t entirely align with our career goals. Well, what if we told you that pursuing your passions could actually strengthen the skills you need for your career?

Nobody is greater living proof of this than OLLY marketing manager, Mari Mazzucco. After falling in love with art history in high school, Mazzucco majored in the subject in college and pursued internships at museums and galleries before getting her first job. While she didn’t realize it at the time, studying art history actually granted her the foundational skills needed to enable her career in marketing. How, you ask?

This may sound far-fetched, but our interview with Mazzucco proves that when it comes to pursuing both your personal and professional goals, you can have your cake and eat it, too. And that every job along the way, no matter how big or how small, are all cumulative towards your end goal.

Don’t believe us? Read on and see for yourself.


On her career journey…

“I originally had accepted an offer after graduating at a contemporary art auction house, but when a friend introduced me to the founders of a soon-to-be-launched basics brand, I put the art world on hold and joined their team. I really lucked out. The company was small and leadership was supportive, allowing me to explore and take ownership of different roles. I quickly learned that I was passionate about marketing, and worked my way up to managing everything from social media to copywriting and editorial. Influencers were just starting to emerge as an alternative marketing channel and I soon realized this was something I wanted to pursue further.

“I met the founders of Collectively and was impressed with how they humanized the brand-influencer relationship. It wasn’t about being transactional, but rather a true mutual creative endeavor. I joined their team as a community manager, and then took roles in campaign and account management. Agency life is fast-paced and you work with a diverse range of brands, so you’re constantly met with new challenges. It can be stressful but rewarding to see innovative partnerships come to life.

“I had been following OLLY since launch, and when I saw they were hiring I immediately jumped on the opportunity. I was looking for roles that would allow me to work cross-functionally and to expand my knowledge of marketing and general business. I originally started as the influencer lead, and since then, the role has expanded to PR and partnerships. It’s been amazing to be a part of the OLLY journey, from startup through Unilever acquisition.”

On what she studied…

“I majored in art history. It was a required course in high school and I instantly fell in love with the subject, knowing that I wanted it to be an academic focus for me in college. Not only do you obtain a solid understanding of design and aesthetics, you learn how to be an analytical and creative thinker, and a strong writer, public speaker, and researcher. I didn’t realize it then, but I was creating the foundation I needed to have a career in marketing.”

On interning before she landed the job…

“Leading up to my first job, I had only interned at museums and galleries, so I never had traditional marketing or communications work experience. One of my most memorable internships was at the Legion of Honor Museum in San Francisco. I spent the summer working with the lead curator of the Achenbach Foundation for Graphic Arts, assisting with research and curation for the Impressionist Paris: City of Light exhibition, featuring works on loan from the Musée D’Orsay. It was incredibly tedious and it taught me that no task is ever too small.

“Finding ways to gain experience within particular roles or fields of interest is the best way to determine what you want professionally. You will never know unless you try and if it doesn’t work out or wasn’t what you expected, you have to look at it as a step forward to get you where you’re meant to be.”

On what her day-to-day looks like…

“If I’m honest, it’s a lot of emails, meetings, and calls (and many coffee breaks in between). But if I were to break it down, really my day-to-day consists of everything from campaign planning and ideation, contract negotiations, budget management, content reporting and analytics, content review and creative briefing, and every once-in-a-while, events, meetings with editors, and photoshoots. I work closely with brand, social, and e-commerce to ensure we’re executing a true 360 approach.”

On the common misconceptions of her job…

“It’s definitely not as glamorous as it may seem and there’s no one set approach or formula to influencer marketing. Because these are true relationships, you have to be flexible and agile. I’ve found that the strongest performing content is often a result of brand trust—if you feel like you need to be heavily involved in the content creation process, then it probably isn’t the best fit.”

On advice for young professionals…

“Take the time to reach out to people who work in the field or role you’re interested in. Whether you find them on LinkedIn or meet at events like Create & Cultivate, never be afraid to ask for time to connect. People are more eager than you realize to discuss their own career experiences and to help out. Be direct about what you’re hoping to gain from your meeting, do your research, and prepare questions.”

On the importance of mentors…

“Absolutely. Mentorship affords you the opportunity to reflect on your own professional practices and to seek that of others. Personally, the relationships I’ve developed within and outside our organization have been key to my professional growth. In some instances, it’s actually directly led me to my next job.”

On career podcasts to tune into…

“How I Built This with Guy Raz is my favorite podcast. It tells the stories behind some of the most well-known companies and innovators. I tend to listen whenever I feel like I’m in a bit of a creative rut.”

On what keeps her motivated on challenging days…

“Working with such an intelligent and driven group of people. Anytime I feel a sense of doubt, I know I have a network I can turn to for advice and input. I’d say that when you’re looking for a job, make sure you research the people, not just the role or the company.”

On the OLLY initiative, she’s most proud of…

“It’s hard to choose just one! We’ve worked with Makeup by Mario for the past few years, and in the spring launched a co-branded product, which was a really exciting evolution to our partnership. In general, though, it’s been so rewarding to see how awareness and sentiment have changed over time, particularly via engagement with our long-term ambassadors. At first, many had not heard of OLLY or tried our products, but now when you scroll through the comments you see people say how obsessed they are, how it’s improved their health, and really changed their quality of life.”

On her best work hack…

“There is great power in the art of list-making. I make lists for everything, and especially on the days or weeks that I have a lot going on, it really helps keep my mind sorted, which is half the battle to get things done. Sometimes this can get daunting, so I break it down by day or even hourly. I find that when you complete even the most simple task, that sense of accomplishment helps keep you motivated. When I really need to head down, I put my phone away (easier said than done), block off time on my calendar, and find a quiet space.”


To discover more about OLLY visit, olly.com.

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