Written by Ansley Gogol, Media Relations Specialist
I recently packed up a U-Haul and ventured from Cleveland, Ohio to my new hometown of Columbus. My U-Haul trekked down I-71 with a trailer attached since I failed to order the correct size for my ridiculous amount of belongings. I arrived in Grandview, and opened the door to my new apartment -- which I had only toured via FaceTime prior to move-in day -- and began to unpack my new adventure.
Growing up in the South, I attended the Grady School of Journalism at the University of Georgia to initially pursue broadcast journalism. I loved meeting new people, writing and telling stories, and I wanted these aspects to be a part of my career. I eventually switched majors junior year -- a risky move many people told me not to follow through with -- but I knew I was meant to be in a team-building, storytelling environment in the public relations industry. I wanted to create stories and distribute them to the media in creative ways.
Throughout my time at UGA and following graduation, I took risks in my professional career to learn which area of PR I wanted to pursue. I held various jobs and internships, including working as a wedding planner, a marketing intern for Skip Barber Racing School, a communications coordinator for the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and I eventually moved to Cleveland to explore agency life at Falls Communications.
I also made sure to take a few risks in my personal life. I studied leadership in South Africa, and worked in local townships nearby. Throughout my time in Cape Town I took many steps outside of my comfort zone – bungee jumping off of the highest bridge in the world, cage diving with great whites where Shark Week is filmed, riding ostriches (more terrifying than you’d think), skydiving and venturing on safaris.
Risk-taking and storytelling oftentimes go hand in hand, especially in public relations. In my opinion, the best stories are the ones that are told after taking a risk -- whether it’s coming up with a new angle no one else has thought of, discovering a new trend you can tap your client into, or writing an epic blog post following a bungee jump in a foreign country.
There are times when you have to take risks by creating news for various clients, which I often did for brands like Elmer’s, Krazy Glue, Vitamix and Erie Insurance at my previous agency. That’s part of the fun though. Finding a new angle, working to get attention for your clients and telling their stories by developing meaningful relationships with the media.
Recently Cleveland won their first NBA Championship in decades and hosted the Republican National Convention this week -- an event my previous firm was very involved in. It was a tough city to leave. But I saw something in MediaSource I just couldn’t pass up.
After conducting some research and meeting team members throughout my interview process, I knew that MediaSource was the type of company that wasn’t afraid to take risks. They are forward thinking in the way they pitch ideas and develop interesting ways to garner attention for healthcare clients. The team constantly creates video and written content in-house and then achieves major exposure via national media relations. I could see early on that the company’s social media, website and blog content is on-trend and they’re a proven thought leader in the PR space.
I wanted to be a part of this team. I wanted to learn from this team. I wanted to continue to explore and develop my brand journalism career. So, here I am. I know this risk will definitely be worth the reward.