MEET ANNA SIAN
Marketer, VSCO / Photographer
I met Anna probably five years ago. We were both women working in streetwear and while we weren't the only ladies to be in the realm of graphic tees turned cut and sew back to graphic tees, we were a part of a small sect of women who fell into and/or took on the roles in the extreme dude-centric industry that were presented to us.
Now Anna is marketing at VSCO Cam, the best photo app. She tells us about her transition, her thoughts on women in the workplace, her goals, what marketing in 2015 even means and her favorite spots to ponder all of those things.
Follow us as we follow Anna this week.
Interview: Sarah Kim
Photography: Minnow Park
GIF: Hayley Champoux
What do you do? How does that differentiate from what your business cards says?
I'm Brand Marketing Manager at VSCO. And I love taking photos on the side. :)
Grew up in NY, went to Dartmouth, studied? Joined a band? Worked at Staple, now at VSCO? Am I missing anything?
Grew up in NY, went to Dartmouth for Psychology, worked at a photo mag, worked at a few Japanese restaurants, worked at a photo book publisher and gallery, was a TA at ICP, volunteered for a human rights org & Filipina non profit org, worked as a marketing assistant at an engineering company, joined a band, worked at Staple, now at VSCO.
What was it like working at Staple and with Jeff Staple? I imagine the answer is different given Jeff and Staple as a company are two different things.
Getting the opportunity to work at Staple was one of the best things that happened in my career. I learned a TON about people and human behavior, I learned a lot about the fashion/streetwear industry and how marketing works. Jeffstaple is an incredibly smart businessman and it was amazing to be under his proverbial pigeon wing for 4 years.
What would you do differently?
Documented even more. There were so many fascinating people coming in and out of that office.
What was the best part?
The best: meeting brilliant, creative people.
What was the worst part?
The worst: so much to do, always, because the company was pretty small.
What is the best part of working at VSCO?
Best: being inspired by my company, coworkers and the VSCO creative community every single day.
What is the worst part?
Worst: wishing I had more time to shoot!
Why do you think VSCO is important to you in terms of professional growth?
VSCO is an incredible place to work and grow -- this might sound cheesy but it's true -- the founders and execs are great at encouraging everyone to continue to learn and do what they're best at, and what they love most.
Why do you think VSCO is important for the creative community?
Honestly I think VSCO is doing something no other technology company is doing, and that's empowering people to create better by giving them the best tools and access to an incredible platform in which they can discover inspiring work. On top of that, we have a million dollar grant to help realize creative projects via our Artist Initiative program!
Could you help shed light on what this nebulous role of marketing is in 2015. What did it look like when you started, and what is it now?
Marketing is always changing and it's unique to every field, so having started in the photo and engineering industries it's been really different from marketing in streetwear and tech. Some people can choose to chase cool and the shifting trends, but I think certain human truths always apply and how people behave -- what they choose to engage with, the content they choose to consume, the products they buy, are forever tied to these truths. And you won't get people to love your brand if you don't love it yourself.
How often do you shoot? Do you want to be a photographer? A marketer? Are you both? Are you better at one than the other?
I shoot on weekends and sometimes after work. And any other times I see beauty, I always have my iPhone. I think being a photographer first has taught me a lot about how humans choose to focus their attention; what they choose to see, and how they are influenced by their world. And having this experience is especially helpful now as I am marketing in a landscape full of amazing photographers.