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Just last Monday, the Stevie® Awards for the 2020 American Business Awards was announced and Spark Growth’s account manager, Julia Pyo, walked away with a silver Stevie® Award for Marketer of the Year! More than 230 professionals worldwide participated in the judging process to select this year’s Stevie Award winners. Here are some of the comments from the panel of judges:

“Julia has implemented different innovative skills of marketing at Spark Growth with out [sic] much experience. The way she implemented the marketing strategy got good results for the company and her skills had helped her to get promotions too. She applied new ideas and the way she created the awareness of [COVID-19] is very impressive. Good luck Julia.”

“This entry showed strong communication skills in helping clients through tough times and finding new, creative ways for them to maintain and grow their business.”

“The coronavirus pandemic will prove to be a great filter for marketers. Those who can adapt and find ways to deliver value to clients in these circumstances are going to thrive. Julia should do exceptionally well.”

As one of the core team members at Spark Growth, Julia joined our digital marketing agency as a copywriting intern in 2017 where she quickly stood out thanks to her exceptional writing skills, excellent leadership qualities, and strategic thinking. After her internship, she stayed on as a contractor and eventually moved to a full-time position as an account manager, overseeing many of Spark Growth’s clients.

Julia’s continued success as a marketer and contributions to Spark Growth definitely caught the judges’ attention. Today, we’ll be talking about what makes Julia such an effective digital marketer, especially during the COVID-19 that has impacted businesses around the world. In elevating her clients during this crisis, Julia has shown that thinking outside the box combined with efficient pivoting can yield successful results.


Digital and eCommerce Trends with Julia Pyo, Account Manager at Spark Growth


Congratulations on your award for Marketer of the Year at the Stevie® Awards!

Thank you! We’ve been social distancing for about two months, so it was great to receive such uplifting news in the middle of all this!


You started out as a copywriting intern and you were eventually offered a full-time position after your excellent performance. After three years at Spark Growth, what has stood out to you the most?

What has impressed me the most about working at Spark Growth is how quickly the whole team picks up on new trends and adapts. It’s definitely crucial in our industry, which is changing literally every day, but I’m still always impressed by how efficient the team is when it comes to learning and executing something new. I feel truly lucky to have such talented and creative team members who are always supportive of each other!


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As an account manager at Spark Growth, you’re involved with a lot of different clients across several industries. Some businesses (especially eCommerce) are actually ramping up their digital marketing, which is interesting to learn given the economic downturn. In your experience, what is the biggest impact COVID-19 has had on digital marketers and digital marketing agencies? Why is now the right time for businesses to invest in their digital marketing?

Probably the biggest impact is the dramatic change in how people are buying or considering their purchases. Obviously a lot of businesses ended up entirely cutting their marketing budgets during the pandemic, but we’re also seeing a lot of businesses who have adapted their offering and are now raking in the profits. The key here is that they were quick to adapt their digital marketing strategy and properly answered a new need. A lot of consumers are still spending money as they sit bored at home, especially if it’s made easy for them to do online.


Interesting! So businesses who are flexible and quick to adapt their social media marketing were able to take advantage of these new eCommerce trends. Among the clients you manage, what steps have you taken in order to help them navigate the pandemic? 

As soon as it looked like things were starting to shut down, I reached out to each of my clients to let them know that in these circumstances we were, not only open to but we were going to, reposition their digital marketing strategy. For a certain eCommerce client, it meant tweaking their ad messaging to better address consumers’ needs. For a client that could no longer accept appointments, it meant shifting their ad objective to brand awareness so that we could invest in building up an audience to use for future conversion campaigns. Quite literally every project was changed in some way.


Lastly, do you have any tips on how digital marketers and businesses should approach their digital marketing and social media content during times of crisis? 

Yes! The first tip is for content creation: luckily we are living in an age that absolutely ADORES authenticity. No way you can organize a professional photoshoot right now, so just take a picture of the product in your living room with your phone. And don’t try too hard to make it look professional! Sometimes the rougher it looks, the better.

In terms of digital marketing, I know a lot of businesses are trying to ride it out until the end of the crisis before returning to their marketing strategy, but honestly, the truth is that at the time that this blog is being published, no one knows when this pandemic will truly end. So my advice would be that it’s better to invest in digital marketing and repositioning your business now, because we might be in this for the long haul. You don’t want to be stuck scrambling to set up an eCommerce site too late while your competitors revamped their business four months earlier.


Good advice! Pivoting and thinking ahead are important factors, not just for digital marketing agencies managing their clients, but for businesses and eCommerce sites as well. Thanks for your time, Julia, and congratulations again for winning silver for Marketer of the Year at the Stevie® Awards for the 2020 American Business Awards!

To learn more about what social media marketing can do for your brand, why not read through some of our case studies? From a national eCommerce business to a global sports franchise, here’s how our team helped these brands reach their audience.


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