The Social Media Girl Diaries: A Day in the Life of a Strategist

ASA’s Strategist Olga Fes on working in digital marketing, her relationship to social media and her self care routine

“Remember that you’re talking to a friend,” Olga Fes said to me over Zoom, on working in digital marketing.

At the centre of Olga’s strategy, when it comes to crafting killer campaigns, is a sense of connection to her clients. We’re walking through a day in her life, honing in on her habits, routines and practises that help her to flourish as a strategist here at ASA. From her productivity hacks for client work to her wind down routine at the end of the day, she’s spilling all the tea.

Working 9-5

Olga boosts her creativity by sourcing fresh inspiration before digging into new projects. She described each new project as “a journey:” at the start of which, she’ll turn to Reddit, TikTok and Instagram comments, to “understand how to speak to [the] audience.”

“There’s no better way to understand people than to be exactly where they are,” Olga said.

Creative strategizing takes brain power, so before she dives into work, Olga fuels her mind with her go-to morning smoothie.

Boost your creativity with the recipe below!

  • Lactose free milk
  • Banana
  • Blueberries
  • Peanut butter
  • Tablespoon of matcha
Image shows ASA Strategist Olga holding her smoothie in front of a sunny window. The smoothie is blue and purple.
Olga’s smoothie! Breakfast of champions

She’ll dive into work sipping her smoothie, kicking off client work by referencing the ads and creative content she sees on social media that pique her interest.

Her process? Imagining the conception of the work from start to finish, putting on the hat of the person who created it while considering who it’s marketed towards.

A part of this process is noting the content online that feels authentic to her: “real humans, simplicity, [content that] truly offers value and explains why someone would want something – [content] that looks like home videos shot on an iPhone.”

She also factors in rest time – five minute breaks in between tasks, encouraged by her therapist to help her recharge throughout the day. These mini breaks are a form of “meditation,” helping to break up the monotony of her neverending to do list. Whether it’s a quick scroll on TikTok or a moment away from a screen, it helps to fuel her creative energy for the next task at hand.

When she dives back into work, gathering content is key to the ideation process. Not to copy what’s already out there, but to consider the format, the texture and the shape of what works, and what doesn’t, online. While trends cycle quickly, content that constantly appeals is raw, with an unmanufactured “vibe.”

While strategizing what content will perform best and make an impact on the intended audience is analytical, it’s also psychological, Olga said. Gathering qualitative data (doing surveys, talking to people in public) can help anyone working in marketing to succeed.

“Always referring to ‘consumers’ and ‘costs per click’ dehumanizes what we’re doing – we’re just viewing people as objects, as clickers and buyers,” she said. “Come from a place of empathy – it’s easy to forget when you’re doing everything from behind a screen!”

Her 5-9 after her 9-5

When it comes time for Olga to shut her laptop at the end of the day, she has a few key self care practises in place that help prepare her to do it all again the next day.

“I love to cook, so I look forward to making a meal, chatting with my roommate, connecting with my friends,” she said.

In her downtime, Olga loves to make music, so singing, strumming her guitar and songwriting are some of her favourite wind-down activities.

She’ll also workout to decompress, do yoga and really try to log off.

After all — it’s all about balance. Olga works alongside other strategists, account managers and creatives to dig into client objectives – harmonizing business goals with creative solutions to connect with a client’s ideal audience. See how strategy and creativity merge to deliver beautiful results for our clients here.

FAQ’s: ask Olga

Q: How do you get into strategy work as a career?

A: When I dropped out of my anthropology program in university (asking myself what the heck am I gonna do with a cultural anthropology degree, lol) I was pretty lost, and had no idea what I wanted to do. I didn’t even know what marketing was as a 19 year old, and I NEVER considered it. I spent so much time researching every single college and university program when I realized I couldn’t work at Steve Madden forever, and when I read about the creative advertising program at Seneca I fell in love. I’ve always been an analytical and creative person (50/50 split), so marketing appealed to me a lot. I chose to study strategy in my creative advertising program and fell in love with the industry.

Q: How do you get out of a creative rut to strategize new ideas?

A: Getting out of your regular surroundings and doing something new is definitely a way to inspire your brain and get out of a creative rut. Nowadays, we are all driven by dopamine, so doing something you know your body and brain will love or putting yourself in a new place will reset you. Sometimes, you just need a good night’s rest or a couple days to reset your mind. It’s hard to be creative always. Also, just let go of the outcome and perfectionism. When you’re trying to make it perfect, it will never be. Let it go and just breathe. Meditate. Clear your mind and approach it from a place of simplicity and curiosity, and always have compassion for yourself if you’re in a rut, because negative self talk has never helped anyone.

Q: What is the most fun aspect of working in strategy?

A: Constantly working on new things and the challenging aspect of it. Constantly testing new things and continuously learning and optimzing!