Welcome back to “The women who rule”, a Victory Blog series that gives you, our loyal readers, the chance to get to know the women that make up the Victory Media team. From their day-to-day, to their hopes, dreams, and skincare routines.
Today, meet Digital Strategist, Samantha Burtnick. A Vancouver unicorn (born and raised), Sam is our goal-oriented Google Certified pro. She’s never met a digital ad campaign she couldn’t master, and her love of spreadsheets can only be matched by her love for her pyjama-wearing Italian Greyhound, Moose. Don’t be fooled by her analytical exterior – our girl is seriously creative, thoughtful, and her bone-dry sense of humour leads to most of our weekly giggle-fests.
Name: Samantha Burtnick
Job Title: Digital Strategist
City: Vancouver-ish BC
Astrological Sign: 🐠
Years at Victory: 2
How would you describe your role at VICTORY?
My role has changed a lot since I first started working with Victory. I started part time, helping the company develop their internal data analytics as well as ensure clients were set up properly to be collecting the right data to measure their goals. A few months later I started full-time, incorporating an Account Manager role into my responsibilities. I think we quickly realized that there was a desire from our clients to run Google Ads, and I had experience using Google Adwords. This is when my role started developing more into a Digital Strategist.
Today, most of my time is spent creating and managing local and national Google Ad search and display campaigns as well as Facebook and Instagram ads. Social media ads in particular have really challenged me to try to stay ahead of the curve and learn what works and what doesn’t work in the fast-moving world of social media advertising. I help the team strategize how and when we should utilize social media advertising, search engine marketing, email marketing, content marketing (blogging, landing page development, keyword research etc.), to help each client meet their short and long term goals.
Walk us through a day in the life of Samantha.
In the past few years I have somehow turned into a morning person on weekdays. Alright, not like a Crossfit at the crack of dawn type of morning person, but a morning person in the sense that I’m conscious before 7:00 AM. Half points?
My alarm goes off at 6:30 AM, I grab a coffee while the pot is still hot from my fiancé Mitch’s morning (thanks for making the coffee every day, Mitch!) and my regular PB&J toast (always). I ease into the day checking emails and messages, look over any digital ads that might need careful monitoring, check a few of my favourite marketing sites to see if anything wacky is going on that I need to know about. I then go into “focus mode” where I try to concentrate on one or two things that really need my full attention. This usually takes up most of my work day. After a few hours of that, I check emails and messages again, tie up loose ends and plan my to-dos for the next day.
Tell us your favourite, and least favourite, thing about working from home.
Favourite: I have two because I love working from home.
1. Not having to worry about perfect makeup, hair, clothing, and then fight traffic or commuters each morning. It really makes a difference in my mood and in my being able to get more done both at work and at home. I am always where I need to be.
2. If I’m having a day when I’m struggling to focus or get quality work done, I’ve gotten used to getting up and going for a walk with Moose, my Italian Greyhound, or going to the gym in the middle of the day. I’ve realized that there is no sense in trying to force myself to do something when I can step away for 45 minutes, reset and come back refreshed. Working from home makes this super easy and acceptable.
Least favourite: Sometimes I do feel like I approach craziness – particularly on Thursdays and Fridays. I think that working and relaxing in the same space can have a negative effect on my sleep. It all melds into one and sometimes I find myself tossing and turning at night thinking about a work project. Because of this I am really trying to stay removed from work after 6:00 PM. No emails, Basecamp (the project management software our team uses), texts, or Instagram. That being said, it’s so easy to work at any time that it can be really hard to stay away in the evenings if a team member needs help.
How would you describe the aesthetic marketing industry to someone who’s new to this world?
I am going to be completely honest, when I applied for a job at Victory I had a feeling I was going to be interviewed by a few stuffy judgemental gals who might ask me what my strengths and weaknesses are but would really be thinking to themselves “jeez, this girl needs some Botox”; that sums up my general interpretation of the industry as a whole. But then I had a phone interview with Sara, and her bubbly self put all of those notions to rest in about… 30 seconds (which if you know Sara, was actually about 2 minutes of conversation at regular human talking speed). I have been incredibly surprised at how genuine, down to earth, and non-judgemental the majority of people in this industry are, both through Victory and our clients and connections. Really though, that’s not made up.
So, back to the question. To those who are new to this aesthetic world, I would tell them it doesn’t have to be a scary place of judgement and self-comparison. The people who are doing it best won’t tell you that you need this or that to be beautiful. Wrinkles are beautiful, Botox is beautiful, natural post-baby bodies are beautiful, and breast implants are also beautiful. However you feel most beautiful is what will be reflected back by the world around you. The job of aesthetic marketing isn’t to tell you what you need to be more perfect, it is to offer you options that allow you to feel like the best version of yourself. Namaste.
Favourite social media network?
Pinterest. I find it the most inspiring (yes, I have tried making a Pinterest “mason jar salad” once or twice).
What’s the best career advice you’ve ever gotten?
Oh man, that’s a tough one, I’ve accumulated some great advice over the years. “Go for the low hanging fruit first”?. Lol, jk. Although you will hear me saying that a lot.
Honestly, the best career advice that I live by is “If it doesn’t look or sound right, it probably isn’t”. I don’t remember a time in my career when someone specifically offered me that advice – they probably did and it has just escaped me. But time and time again (and my colleagues will know that I say this all the time), if something strikes me as not sounding right, or seems like a potential problem, I never want to let it slide. I always want to dig into it, ask questions, do more research… I want to know that I tried my very best to take every precaution to avoid a problem.
Everyone makes mistakes here and there, but when you make a mistake and you can remember the moment you knew it was going to be a problem, but you didn’t listen to yourself – that really sucks.
What’s on your bucket list?
One day I want to have a home big enough to comfortably host my friends and family. It doesn’t need to be huge or extravagant, just a place where we can somewhat comfortably host Christmas dinners, birthday parties, summer BBQs. A long dining room table that fits 12. A wide open family room, a big kitchen island with lots of barstools, and an outdoor yard/patio where we can play games and have a gas fire pit and all sit around it and drink wine and talk about the good ol’ days when we didn’t need Botox (lol, industry joke). That might be too much to ask for in or near Vancouver, but a girl can dream… right?
Share some of your favourite local hot spots.
Although I don’t find myself clothing shopping as much these days, I am a silent-ish fan of the local Muse Social Fashion House. They always have some great key pieces and the staff are the loveliest. Also, if your feet are size 6.5 or smaller you won’t be disappointed when they have a shoe sale. Hooked Fish Bar is my absolute favourite in the summer. The Wooden Spoon has some a-mazing brunches that won’t make you feel like napping immediately after. If you’ve ever been to the White Rock Farmers’ Market when the peony people are there you’ll want to go back every Sunday. The Surrey Tennis Centre – such a great community there (and they have clay courts, which is unheard of in BC). Afgan Kitchen is our newest discovery that we are loving right now (if you are wondering if they have belly dancers, they do!). Also… just the beach, especially during low tide in the summer. Can’t forget that natural local beauty!
Current Netflix addiction?
Mr. Robot. I scraped the bottom of Netflix so now we are on to “Prime Video”.
What’s your skincare routine?
A few of my favourites are from Dermalogica (a brand that Kathryn introduced me to) because they are so reliable. I have been using the Dermalogica Precleanse and Ultracalming Cleanser for years now and I still love them.
Most of my morning routine is comprised of SkinCeuticals – Phloretin CF, Retexturing Activator, Physical Fusion SPF with a pump of Metacell B3 moisturizer (I’m not high maintenance, I swear). Caudalie and Tata Harper are some of my favourite brands as well, I pretty much rotate through these said few brands and try different things adjusting to my skin as it changes. The Tata Harper Resurfacing Mask is my go-to when I want a serious healthy glow the next day. I’m not afraid of a few injections here and there to plump or paralyze when I feel it is needed – I try not to go crazy. Balance is key, but never leave the house without Sunforgettable Brush-on Sunscreen.