Spotlight on: Paula Puls, Alumna Brand Management B.A.
Brand Management B.A.
Title of Thesis
Corporate Social Responsibility in the Food Industry – Development of a Success Factor Model
Hi Paula, what have you been up to since your graduation from Brand Academy?
I had a job as Junior Digital Strategist with interone in Hamburg locked down even before starting my Bachelor’s thesis, and the day after my very last exam in business ethics was my first day of work.
Where do your work now and what are your tasks?
I’m still with interone in Hamburg, where I was promoted to Digital Strategist after 9 months. I develop the strategic foundations for digital products such as platforms, websites, apps, services and features – and also for campaigns. I am very customer-focused in my work in order to find relevant solutions in the right context. My “specialty” is customer journey mapping. I’ve developed a method that takes classical customer journey maps and how they are visualized to the next level. They become more solution-oriented and take brands more closely into consideration. As a result, we can find the reasons for gaps and deltas during the customer journey and develop holistic solutions at the same time.
What are your greatest challenges at work?
You can never allow yourself to be satisfied. Especially in the area of strategy you always have to swim upstream and question the status quo. Strategy is the foundation of a campaign, prototype or solution and therefore must be smart, innovative and exciting. Not least, the strategy has to be derived perfectly from data and analytics.
What do you like about your job?
At interone, every day is different. No matter whether you are taking care of existing customer accounts or pitching for new ones – there are always new tasks and projects to be tackled that help me grow and challenge me at the same time. Still, what I like most is the level of trust I’ve been enjoying from the very beginning. Since day 1 I have been working with interone’s senior management at eye level and I regularly accompany our CEO (who is also the CDO of BBDO Group) to our customers, e.g. to represent our agency during pitches.
What are your plans for the future?
For now I stay at interone so I can develop myself further as a Digital Strategist. However, in the medium run I would like to enter a career-integrated Master’s programme on the side. It will help me keep all my options open, especially with regards to switching to the client side one day. Startups are an option, too, since I find the idea of helping to build up a brand from scratch and making it popular quite appealing.
Looking back at Brand Academy, what do you see?
My time at BA had its ups and downs. Still, studying here was absolutely the right decision because my education provided the perfect stepping stone for my current career in digital strategy at interone. Thanks to BA’s focus on practical application, its holistic approach and its lecturers – who command an impressive level of knowledge and experience – I was able to learn a lot. Especially the practice projects and near-weekly presentations facilitated my entry into the job world and as a result I was able to hit the ground running.
Do you have any advice for prospect students or first semesters?
Always look ahead and never compare yourself to others. Make the most of the practical parts of your studies. Take every stumbling block as an opportunity to learn and start studying for your exams well ahead of time!
What do you do when you’re not working?
Since my work is largely digital I try to make my spare time activities as analog as possible. I like walking my dogs at Jenisch Park, visiting concerts and festivals or meeting friends for coffee or a good meal.