IN THE MEDIA
Taken from the site: www.mishpacha.com
Interview with Devorah
RAMAT BEIT SHEMESH,
DIRECTOR AND OWNER,
RAMAT BEIT SHEMESH
YEARS IN FIELD: 20
MY TYPICAL DAY AT WORK
I usually start off my day going through emails. Next, I do a round with the staff, to see where everyone is holding. I have an in-house graphic designer, web designer/ developer, and copywriter. (Even though using freelancers can work out much cheaper than having employees, I will not compromise. You can’t compare the end result when the full team is involved, connected and sharing ideas, skills, etc.) I’m very involved in the development stages of a project. Once things are in place, I’ll step back but continue to oversee the work. A uniform brand message is very important in marketing, and I’m constantly checking that the team is maintaining that. A large part of my day is spent in meetings, with both existing and potential clients. Beyond the meetings at the beginning stages of a project, I insist on weekly meetings with clients throughout, because it’s essential that we’re on the same page and that the client feels involved in the process.
HOW I CHOSE THE PROFESSION
I was always very creative and enjoyed design, so I trained as a graphic designer. Once I started working, it bothered me when people asked for graphics or ads that didn’t accurately portray their business. For example, a very simple, homey business would ask for an uber-professional, corporate-looking ad. In an effort to better guide my clients, I started asking questions and trying to understand what each company was about and what made it special. After I’d explain why the client’s request didn’t match the message he wanted to convey, clients would ask how they could use the appropriate messaging. I realized how much I enjoyed the strategy side of marketing, and pivoted my business into that.
HOW I CHOSE MY SPECIALTY
As I mentioned, my particular strength is strategy — developing a marketing approach for the client that’s individualized, unique, and research-driven. We don’t do cookie-cutter campaigns; every one of our projects is unique.
WHAT I LOVE MOST ABOUT THE FIELD
Seeing the results of all of the planning and designing come together, whether it’s a logo or a major event in Binyanei Haumah (like our big N’shei Keren Hashviis event last year). There’s nothing like seeing it all come together.
WHAT I FIND MOST CHALLENGING ABOUT THE FIELD
When creating big projects, you need to filter out a lot of negativity and discouragement from people who don’t believe it will work out. It takes courage to believe in your ideas and keep going. But it’s worth it when you see the results and the excitement and buzz! Another personal challenge is that many of my clients are tzedakah organizations that I truly believe in, and I feel bad about charging them. On the other hand, I really invest in a project and have an entire staff and office to run. I’ve asked sh’eilos and was told that the only way I can do a good job for the organizations is by charging them, but I still find it hard every time. But tzedakah can also mean investing your heart and effort, and that’s definitely something I do.
I’LL NEVER FORGET WHEN
I had an amazing story happen recently. I’m currently working on a long-term campaign for Nachzik Chazak, an incredible organization that helps almanos and yesomim. One morning, the head of the organization sent me a picture of a broken boiler they’d just replaced for the family of a widower with many children, who’d been without hot water. Well, later that same day, my husband stopped to give someone a lift. The man started telling him how he’d woken up to such a surprise that morning — a brandnew boiler on the roof! “They didn’t even stop at my door to let me say thank you!” My husband was amazed by the Hashgachah. It was incredibly strengthening for us; as much as we believe in what our clients are doing, there’s nothing like getting a powerful reminder that these are real people being helped.
SOMETHING I WISH PEOPLE KNEW ABOUT MARKETING PROFESSIONALS
Some people perceive marketing as convincing people to do something they don’t really want to do. but that’s not true. The only way to effectively market a product or organization is by being real and genuine.
HOW I’VE SEEN THE FIELD CHANGE OVER THE YEARS
Obviously, technology has had a major influence on marketing. Today everything is digital, and social media has taken over. But, at the end of the day, no matter what medium is used, the basic principles are the same: a strong message, amazing visuals, and genuine emotion.
MY ADVICE FOR PEOPLE STARTING OUT
I believe that the only way to be an effective marketer is by understanding all of the elements of the process, and strongly recommend taking a course in, say, graphic or web design. A big part of marketing is confidence, and if you don’t have the tools, you won’t have confidence. There’s a lot of pressure in the marketing field; when you ask most clients when their deadline is, they’ll say, “yesterday.” For many years, I’d work hours into the night to meet those deadlines, which took a toll on my family. Today, I try not to take on clients if they don’t allow me the time to do the job properly. I generally won’t take on a campaign less than four months in advance. In addition, when I’m in the office, I try to stay very focused on work, and dedicate home time to family, without mixing the two. Both the client and my family gain!