Meet Sarah Tortoreti, vice president of marketing and communications for VidCon, the world’s largest event for fans, creators, executives and brands who share a passion for online video. As the central hub of internal and external communications across markets, Tortoreti is responsible for ensuring all marketing strategies remain consistent to the brand while still catering to each city’s unique customs and culture.
Under her leadership, the Viacom-owned company has successfully introduced the event into new markets including Mexico, Asia, and London. In 2019, VidCon hosted 100,000 total attendees worldwide across its global events. As a result of Tortoreti’s innovative strategies, ticket sales increased for the 2019 event and doubled in the first week of sales for VidCon US 2020, prior to the event ultimately going virtual due to COVID-19.
During a recent interview with WrapWomen, Tortoreti shared advice with women looking to break into the industry and how the company is adapting their strategy during a global pandemic.
Describe your current role.
As the vice president of marketing and communications, I oversee VidCon’s marketing, communications, and promotional strategy and execution, creative, and ticketing and registration, along with VidCon’s overall global branding and positioning.
What’s your strategy moving forward with Covid-19 and VidCon?
COVID-19 has hugely impacted the live event space, and like many other industries and organizations, we have had to rework our business model to accommodate our new world. With that, we are extremely excited about the launch of VidCon Now, an ongoing digital experience that brings the power, strength, and uniqueness of VidCon to our three distinct tracks (community, creator, industry) across a variety of platforms. Since June 20, our virtual programming has been offering insightful, entertaining, and fun content that aims to celebrate, inform, and connect all of our communities in the ever-changing world of online video. We’ve been bringing the VidCon experience (concerts, performances, panels, Q&As, meet & greets, and more) to our audience where they are. We’re super excited about this endeavor, but we are not moving away from the core of our brand, which is live events. We continue to work with authorities and local governments to plan our series of international events in adherence with approved safety measures and guidelines, and look forward to seeing our fans in real life as soon as we can! In the meantime, you can register for VidCon Now at www.vidcon.com.
How do you keep marketing consistent on a worldwide scale?
We have a team who consults on all of our efforts globally to ensure that the VidCon brand and experience remains intact regardless of the market we are in. We also work with experts in each market who are ingrained in the culture and the audiences in their market. These local teams help us evolve our strategy to account for those market specific nuances.
What would you tell a past version of yourself just starting her first marketing job?
There is no template for a successful path. Setting expectations for what title you’re supposed to have by what point is fruitless. It’s a marathon, not a sprint. Trust your gut, and you’ll get where you need to be.
How do you plan to grow VidCon even more?
We are constantly evaluating new ways in which we can expand our presence globally. There are so many markets that have an active creator and creator fan culture, and we look forward to continuing to identify them and bring our experience to them. As we actively move into the digital space, we are also opening ourselves up to limitless opportunities to bring the VidCon experience to people who may never have had the opportunity to attend in real life, which is also really exciting.
What advice do you have for women looking to break into the industry?
- Be the hardest worker in the room.
- Absorb any and all information available to you, and do your best to apply it to your work in thoughtful and impactful ways.
- Be proactive in your approach to your work. Going above and beyond what is asked of you never has a negative impact.
- Identify a strong female leader who you think does it right and try to key into why you think they do it right. Emulate that. Find a mentor and really push that person to help give you insight, perspective, and advice on ways to position yourself for success at every stage of your career.
- Don’t take it all too seriously! Have some fun along the way too!
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