Hat Trick: How Account Strategists Do It All
Ariana Burgess May 2 2012
For someone with only one head, I wear a lot of hats. Most people have jobs they can explain in a sentence (“I’m a doctor / librarian / deep sea diver.”) But I’m not one of those people: I’m an Account Strategist for Portent.
As such, I find myself in all manner of situations, solving all manner of problems. Below is a sampling of some of the hats I wear on any given day.
I’m a Relationship Consultant.
I develop relationships with internal and external team members. I get to know what they like, who they are and how to communicate with them. I listen to their desires, ideas and suggestions, converting their wants into actualities.
I’m a Researcher.
Any good client-agency relationship depends on knowing a client’s products, services and customers. Extensive research allows me to help our clients grow their businesses, reach their goals and get to the next level. I ask myself: “Why did traffic go up on this day?” “What caused the spike in conversions?” “Why are visitors spending less than 1 minute on the page?” It is important to anticipate these client questions and prepare answers before they actually ask.
I’m a Teacher.
After gathering research, I explain to the client how we can help. At Portent, we pride ourselves on articulating our strategies and processes to the client, inviting them to understand every step of what we do. Educating clients about the reasoning behind the things we are doing helps everyone make better decisions. I’m also a teacher/educator to the internal team, connecting them to the client and giving them better tools to achieve client objectives.
I’m a Task Manager.
By breaking elements of a project into manageable chunks, we deliver high quality work in an efficient and timely manner. I ensure things don’t slip through the cracks via tracking and regular catch-up meetings with team members. This part of the job is less about “do this task” than focusing our resources to accomplish client goals. Our teams work on a lot of projects, so managing company time and tasks is essential.
I’m an Interpreter.
SEO, PPC, Link Authority, keyword rich text links, non-branded vs organic visits, klout, hashtags, bit.ly, content strategy, and many more. These are in my vocabulary every day. If you aren’t in Internet Marketing, you may not know what these terms are. I have to know. I teach and share these terms with clients.
I’m a Crisis Consultant.
Crisis is defined in Wikipedia as: any event that is, or expected to lead to, an unstable and dangerous situation affecting an individual, group, community or whole society. It can mean different things to different clients. Be it an all-hands-on-deck, four-alarm fire, or merely an inconvenient bump in the road, my role is to assess the crisis and adjust appropriately.
This “hat” list is hardly exhaustive. It seems that every day brings new challenges – the good kind, and the not-so-good. But being an Account Strategist is never boring and the payoff of seeing a client grow makes it more than worthwhile.
Sr. Project Manager
Ariana has worked at Portent for 10 happy years, beginning as Ian’s Business Coordinator, then moving up to Traffic Coordinator and, eventually, Project Manager. This last fall she moved up to Senior Project Manager and is working with the Project Management team to help deliver awesome projects for our clients. Read More