Anna SoaneApril 5, 2022
After graduation from Truman, Anna Soane moved back to Chicago to pursue a career in the social and digital marketing + advertising world. Currently she is a Manager of Social + Digital Platform Strategy at Weber Shandwick. Anna’s 7 years of professional experience includes working with 25+ brands within a wide range of markets across North America in industries including politics, hospitality, food & beverage, and consumer goods. In her free time, she plays on rec soccer and volleyball teams with friends. Anna also enjoys travelling, reading, going to concerts, and spending time with friends and family.
What year did you graduate and what was your concentration?
I graduated in May 2016 with a Bachelor of Arts in Public Communication.
What extra-/co-curricular activities did you do?
I was a radio DJ and on the promotions team at KTRM 88.7 FM (formerly “The Edge”), I was a member of Delta Zeta and the Advertising and Public Relations Organization. I also completed the International Internship Program in Salzburg, Austria as a Public Relations Intern at Research Studios Austria.
Did you go to grad school? If so, where? Was it immediately after you left Truman or did you wait? Why?
I did not attend grad school, I jumped right into the workforce. For my career path, I don’t think grad school was a necessary investment and that work experience would be more valuable in the long run.
What was your first job after graduation?
I started out as a Junior Account Executive at American Strategies, but only worked there for nine months. Although my tenure was short, I learned a lot and felt prepared for my next venture. Within my first year of graduating, I started my second job at BCV where I worked for nearly 5 years and my time there is where I built the foundation for my career. BCV is a boutique advertising agency that provides social media solutions for the hospitality industry. I started as a Junior Account Executive and left as a Senior Account Executive. As a member of the Client Services team, I had a wide array of responsibilities, all of which laddered up to the direct management of a portfolio of clients, serving as their trusted partner and lead for all aspects of their social advertising & marketing programs. During my time at BCV, I worked with a variety of brands, across the US, Caribbean, Mexico, and Canada. I led, developed, and executed every facet of my clients social advertising and marketing programs.
What work do you do/What are you doing now?
I am currently a Manager of Social + Digital Platform Strategy at Weber Shandwick, one of the world’s leading global public relations firms. As a Platform Strategist, my main purpose is to serve as an expert across all digital and social platforms and ensure all programs I’m involved in are utilizing the social & digital space as strategically as possible.
How has your Liberal Arts/COMM education helped you?
The biggest challenge of working in the digital space is that it is constantly evolving. My Liberal Arts/COMM education taught me to be curious about everything and gave me the necessary skills to be successful in a advertising and marketing career.
Which class did you dislike at the time you took it, but now you’re grateful you took it?
Organizational Communication. At the time it seemed very tedious and since it was theory based it was hard to see how I would use this knowledge in my future career. Now, since working at a few different companies, having a strong understanding of the roles that communication plays within an organization is crucial in knowing how to navigate and make best of your time at any company.
What was your greatest accomplishment at Truman?
Successfully balancing my academics, extra curriculars, and social life. Learning to manage your time well in college is not only important for your post-grad life but also for your college experience. Don’t forget to carve out time to have fun and make life-long friends!
Why is Truman a good place for a student to study?
Truman’s size gives students the opportunity to build relationships with professors and peers, inside and outside of the classroom. You get a high-quality education tailored to your needs and interests while also being a part of a strong community on campus.
What would you say a COMM student should absolutely do while at Truman?
Take a variety of COMM courses and join COMM related extra-curriculars right away, even a few that are outside of your preferred focus area. One of my favorite parts about being a COMM major was having the opportunity to take a broad range of courses and participate in organizations related to potential career paths. I started my Freshman year convinced I wanted to be a journalist, I joined the Truman Media Network and tried out a few different journalistic jobs and realized that life wasn’t for me. I ended up switching to the Public Communication track my sophomore year.
What advice would you give someone who wants to go into the same line of work as you?
Experience and learn as much as you can right away. Starting my digital marketing career at small agencies allowed me the opportunity to learn the ins and outs of developing and executing successful digital marketing programs through hands-on experience. My vast involvement in these programs over the years taught me what I enjoy and am most passionate about in the digital marketing world and gave me the necessary skills and confidence to change the trajectory of my career path from the broad nature of Account Management to a more focused Strategy role.
What do you miss most about campus/Kirksville?
I miss getting to live with and just down the street from all my closest friends. It’s a time I will cherish forever.
What tag line would you create for the COMM department at Truman?
“Communication is key.”
If you could come back to Truman and teach a class for a semester, what would be its title and what would it be about?
“Keeping Up with The Digital World: 101.” It would teach students the most strategic way to keep up with the constant updates, news and trends across all digital platforms and how to implement those learnings into ongoing marketing and advertising efforts.
What did we not ask that you think is important for people to know?
Your college years are when you really start to figure out who you are as an individual, so keep an open mind about everything. Try new things, get out of your comfort zone and experience as much as you can, now is the time to take chances-you never know what you might find out about yourself along the way.
If you would like to learn more of Anna’s story, you can follow her on LinkedIn.