Recap: Fashion and Media
recap: fashion + media — the new influencers
We partnered with NYU Steinhardt, Department of Media, Culture and Communication to bring New York’s biggest and most exciting industries together in fashion media, with jobs in PR, editorial content, marketing, blogging, and social media. Fashion media pros from Teen Vogue, Refinery29, and Glossier share how to break into this cutting-edge industry. Check out clips from the panel below!
A Diverse Job History
How do you navigate job hunting when your résumé reflects a variety of jobs that are vastly different and look as though they have nothing in common? It’s important to know your strengths and really own them. If you can articulate your strengths and be able to talk about how your skill set has applied to each job you’ve had, that in itself shows that you’re a well-rounded candidate.
Are You A Generalist?
Chelsea graduated from Hunter College and wants to know the best way to approach employers if you consider yourself more of a generalist with a diverse skill set that may fall into multiple departments. Annie Georgia Greenberg, Fashion Editor at Large at Refinery29, recommends that you don’t apply to more than one position at a time at a company so that you don’t send the wrong message of being unfocused. But, once you get in the door you can flex your skill set a little more and talk to your supervisor about different areas you’re comfortable in, but know what you’re going in for first and make sure you can check those boxes.
A Relationship Industry
Phillip Picardi, Digital Editorial Director at Teen Vogue is a big fan of informational interviews. Before asking for one, be well-read on the person you’re reaching out to and the company they’re working for. Figure out the purpose of the meeting and why you want to meet with them and go prepared with something to offer. For example, pitch them in order to receive feedback in real-time. And always have a résumé to give them. It’s never been easier to connect with an editor on social media and you should take full advantage of that.
Don’t Be A Mess On Social Media
How do employers judge a candidate’s social media presence? Employers will definitely check a candidate’s Instagram and twitter feeds because it’s a good representation of how they want to present themselves to the public. That’s important to keep in mind when you’re posting. On the flip side, it can also work in your favor. Phillip Picardi at Teen Vogue has hired people based on their Instagram and twitter feeds and unique POV. Balance is key.
Enthusiastic Fashion Candidates
Knowing where you’re applying is as important as being able to represent who you are in an interview. Knowing why you want to work at a particular company, drawing on reference points of what inspires you, and knowing the kind of work you’d like to do are hugely important. Be well read on that company on every platform where they exist. Fashion may make you feel like being cool and really reserved in an interview, but an enthusiastic candidate goes much further. Annie Georgia Greenberg of Refinery29, Raeshem Nijhon of Fictionless, Claire Knebl of Glossier, and Phillip Picardi of Teen Vogue weigh in.
How To Stay In The Know
Fashion is often a reflection of culture and if you’re not informed of what’s going on in the world you may not best understand what’s happening in the industry at large. Phillip Picardi of Teen Vogue recommends reading all of the trade publications, including Business of Fashion and WWD. Annie Georgia Greenberg of Refinery29 also advises to look at people who inspire you and follow who they follow in order to build your own network of references so that in an interview you can easily say who your favorite artist, designer or editor is.
Turning An Internship Into A Job
What do fashion interns do? Generally, interns are department specific, so if you’re on the video team you’re a PA who’ll learn everything from balancing a budget to setting up a backdrop to learning about cameras. If you’re in editorial, you’re pitching and writing. If you’re on the styling side you’re helping with wardrobe and dressing the set. Remember, an internship is a really long interview for a full-time job. Annie Georgia Greenberg from Refinery29 and Claire Knebl from Glossier weigh in.
Working in Fashion Media
Every single day in fashion is different. Sometimes that's balancing a budget, sometimes that's a video shoot, pre-production or post-production and sometimes it's very unglamorous. If you like routine, the fashion industry may not be for you. No two days are the same.
Most people have a perception of the fashion industry that people aren’t very warm or friendly and that you need to be that way in order to move up the career ladder. Phillip Picardi, Digital Editorial Director, at Teen Vogue debunks that notion and says that people skills go a long way and being nice to people adds a lot of value. Additionally, keeping a humor and humbleness about yourself also helps a lot.
Pick A Specific Role
In school, and even just out of school, it can be easy to not know for sure what area of communications you want to focus on. Pick one of the roles that really resonate with you and then tailor your résumé and cover letter towards that tole. Remember, everything can change once you get through the door.
Staying in Touch Post Internship
If you’re in your senior year, at the start of your second semester reach out to past employers and let them know exactly when you’ll be graduating and that you’re looking to start working upon graduation. The follow-up again closer to your graduation date and ask them more concretely for something: are there any openings or can they put you in touch with someone in HR. Don’t be afraid to reach back out.
Shifting Your Skill Set
Annie Georgia Greenberg, Editor at Large at Refinery29 talks about shifting your skill set towards roles that you’re interested in. Even if you are a political science or English literature major, there are ways to snag that PR or fashion media internship. Annie explains how.