By Eloise Barclay
This week on Where are they now? I chat with Cameron Zapantis, a graduate of QUT’s double degree in Business Management and Media and Communications. Check out our interview below to find out how he scored his first job through Snapchat!
What degree did you study at QUT?
I studied a double degree in Business majoring in Management and a Bachelor in Media and Communication.
Where have you worked since graduating and what is your current role?
After I graduated from university in 2017, I worked in the retail industry at Lowes while I waited to properly find my feet. Since the start of 2018 I have been working with a company called SponsoredLinX as a Google AdWords Client Manager. All those advertisements that you see on Google, in banners, YouTube and the like I set up and create them according to the best fit. I currently manage over 40 different small to medium businesses. Some of these companies have been around for over 90 or so years.
How did you get your current job?
Snapchat honestly. I uploaded a story on Snapchat of me looking for work on LinkedIn and someone commented saying, ‘my place is hiring.’ I looked it up, went in to interview for a sales role, but was offered a Client Manager position after they saw my credentials and qualifications. Self-marketing on social media platforms work!
What elements of your degree have you used in your career?
Transferable skills, such as effective communication, time management, negotiating and strategic management, have been very useful. Most of the clients I operate with possess little business knowledge of advertising. It is then critical to explain anything that is happening and why it is happening.
In terms of subjects from my degree that I found helpful, Strategic Speech in my Media and Communications degree was intimidating, yet prepared me for real world experiences. Do not sleep in that class, as being able to effectively communicate is vital in the industry! The first 20 or so seconds I have when first contacting a client will set the tone for the entire transaction. I have clients where their advertising campaign is not converting at all, but they still stick on because of how I talk. I give them confidence through my own confidence.
What are you loving about your job?
The culture. We work hard and then are rewarded for that hard work. The young feel in the office makes the transition from university to industry really easy. On a more personal note, it’s also enjoyable when your clients thank you for what you have done.
What has been the highlight of your career so far?
It sounds strange but being pushed to my absolute limits has been my highlight so far. I have never been so challenged in my life that at times it feels so overwhelming I just need to shut off. But once you get through that, make a plan, stick to it and then climb that mountain, the sense of achievement is incredibly worth it.
What are your goals for the future?
I don’t really have any at this point in time, I am just happy to let the current take me. Maybe I will start thinking about buying an investment property!
How do you maintain a work life balance?
By not wasting weekends. Take advantage of your time off to reset and have fun with your friends.
Do you have any tips for current students who want to get into the industry?
Not the industry exactly, but more in general. Do not stress. Remember, only roughly 1/3 of people have qualifications like yours and you will eventually find your place as long as you are willing to put in the effort and accept that it won’t always be smooth sailing. Know what you want, do not send a CV into a job just because you are desperate, HR recruiters will know almost immediately and see through it.
When you do find your place and you feel as though you need to stay back or work weekends, don’t. You will burn out. Understand that you are new, things will be hard and the learning curve might even be incredibly steep. But know that they are not hiring you as the finished product. They are hiring you almost as a test subject that they see faith in. All you have to do is accept you won’t be perfect when you first start, when you make a mistake, own it and reflect. Over time you won’t be the one asking the questions, you will be the one answering them.