Friend to UpHouse, Laura Kloepfer, has held many job titles in the past — varying from Social Media Specialist to Graphic Designer and Art Director. Now a freelance Creative Strategist, Laura is mainly focused on helping businesses nail their social media strategies. Wondering what the marketing mantra of someone who’s had such a rich career is? Taking time outs! High five, Laura.
We asked Laura what she predicts the future of social media will look like and what being a freelancer has taught her. Read on to find out!
You have been working as a freelancer for the past few months. What has that been like for you?
AH-MAZING! I’ve been really lucky and even though this whole freelancer thing wasn’t planned, it worked out perfectly.
Is there anything you’ve learned along the way?
So many things and I’m still learning every day. Mostly I’ve learned that my intuition is usually right and I should trust it, particularly when taking on new projects or clients.
If there is something telling me it’s not right, then it is probably not right.
You’re planning to start your own business soon. Tell us more about that. What have been some of the challenges? What about the positives?
The biggest challenge has been finding the time and finding the right people to go to for advice. There are so many things that I don’t know and I’m always looking for others who are experts, the trick is finding the right expert. The positives? It’s nice to be able to build my ideal business from the ground up and to own a vision.
Where do you look for inspiration these days?
Is Pinterest still a thing? I go there almost daily to find inspo, but I’m also a big fan of magazines. Ha — are those still a thing? I worked for an alternative fashion magazine when I started as a creative and they have always held a special place in my heart. I used to love what Lucky Peach was doing with illustration and design and I’m also a big fan of Uppercase.
When working with a client on their social media strategy, what do you find to be the biggest challenge?
Social media is such a personal thing. We’ve all got an account, so we all know how to use it. But when it comes to marketing your business on social media, that’s a whole other can of worms. It’s challenging sometimes to take criticism on something you know, but also something that you’ve likely become attached to and worked hard on.
Tell us about a career highlight.
Gosh, probably when I published a book with my former team at WORN Fashion Journal. That was kind of a big deal and it felt really good seeing it on the shelves at Chapters. All my experience in graphic design, photography and writing led me to here and this moment was a big milestone for future growth.
What does the future of social media look like to you? What changes do you foresee in the near future that will affect your work?
How far in the future are we talking here? I think this is already happening, but we’re going to start seeing less polish on social media.
We’ve been hearing the word “authenticity” a lot lately and consumers are so darn savvy now. They’d rather find something cool on their own than be marketed to by some reality TV star/influencer (no offense to them, I love reality TV).
Brands are catching on and I think we’ll start to see things that aren’t created by big budgets and superstars.
While at The ACE Class, you organized and oversaw a lot of events. Why was it so important for you, and the overall ACE organization, to bring that online community together IRL?
ACE started as an event within another organization and became more of an online community as it grew. Their mission is to change the way women connect with one another so they can thrive together, and it is really hard to do that online. Growing up, I always felt very excluded and never really connected with other girls. So when I found ACE, it was like something clicked for me and I realized that a big part of that connection is me. ACE gives women the space and then we get to choose how we show up in it.
What’s one dream project that you would love to do or be involved with?
That’s a tough one, there’s so much good stuff happening out there. But I’m a big fan of the Louise Delage campaign that ran a few years ago in France. It influenced a lot of my past work in social media and I thought it was pretty brilliant at the time.
What is one tool at your desk or workspace that you couldn’t live without?
My day planner. It has my whole life in it and keeps me focused on my goals. I’m always trying out new planners, so if anyone out there has recommendations, shoot them my way!
Marketing mantra or key belief you couldn’t do your job without?
Zack Morris had the right idea with his time-out superpower. I’m a true believer in taking time outs. I’m able to focus better if I honour those days when I’m burnt out or not inspired. Building in time for those moments (because we all have them) allows for me to be more productive when I am in the zone.
What’s the worst advice you have ever received?
I don’t think I can write it here in case the person who gave it to me reads this! But let’s just say it led me to where I am now, so it was a great learning experience for me.
Fun tidbit about yourself.
I read tarot cards and I’m designing my own deck right now! #truestory
Give Laura a follow on Instagram to keep up with her.