Mass comm pros share tactics that stick

By Katie Coleman

With Mass Comm Week in full swing, media professionals filled students in on what it takes to make it in the business.

Various mass communication professionals shared their online brands. Photo by Katie Coleman

A session at 5 p.m. Monday allowed students to interview Texas State alumni about their careers in the field. Among the participants were various journalism, electronic media, public relations and advertising professionals from the San Marcos, Austin and San Antonio areas.

Emilie Lutostanski, the manager for Community Impact, oversees the newspaper’s online presence and said she feels journalism is a wise area of study for college students.

“It’s always a good idea to major in journalism because you come out with AP Style and all sorts of multimedia skills,” Lutostanski said. “They want people who know how to write well and will come off as an intelligent brand ambassador.”

To be a media professional, Lutostanski said knowing your audience was key, especially when using social media outlets.

“You have to make it a two-way street,” she said. “Sending and receiving, listening to your audience…Be able to tap into channels your readers are on.”

Thea Setterbo discusses
Thea Setterbo discusses how to be a successful media professional. Photo by Katie Coleman

Fellow journalism major and Public Information Officer for the City of San Antonio Thea Setterbo shared Lutostanski’s opinion and said real world experience would help students stand out in their job search.

“Something you don’t learn in the classroom is how to talk to people,” Setterbo said. “Learning how to talk on the phone, learning to hold a conversation with people – really just customer service is important.”

Aside from holding a professional demeanor in the workplace, Setterbo said learning to accept yourself and your mistakes was crucial to lasting in the field of mass communication.

“You have to have a lot of patience and courage,” she said. “Anticipating that you’re going to mess up and having the ability to move forward.”

Gary Boyer, though not a Texas State alumnus, is a freelance and NBA videographer and said experience in all mass communication fields would lead a better road to success.

“You need to have all the skill sets,” Boyer said. “As much as you can have in your toolbox.”

Though Boyer said experience was beneficial, he insists a more valuable asset of success in the business is passion.

“You need to have the passion and desire to want to do it,” he said. “I would rather hire someone with more passion that maybe has the demo reel. It goes a lot further.”

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