Meet Kenya Russell, Fledging’s Digital Marketing Manager
Tell us a little about your background.
Well, I'm a PR and marketing strategist who has been working in the field for two years since graduating from the University of Alabama in 2018 (which is routinely ranked in the Top 5 nationally for PR programs). In 2017, I created The Mix Birmingham, which community built for creative professionals and entrepreneurs in Birmingham. I'm a Birmingham native, a painter, and a former collegiate volleyball and basketball player.
Initially, my parents wanted me to pursue something more stable, like healthcare. While playing sports at Wallace State, I took a speech course that I loved. It was a pre-cursor for the communications track, and my teacher was very enlightening and educated me on public relations. I am a very action- and issue-oriented person, so when she taught me how to solve communicative puzzles, build relationships and support arguments. I fell in love with the overall process of figuring out the variables and managing problems. Those are the things that make my heart beat a little faster. That's essentially what PR is.
Where did you head after graduation?
I started consulting right after graduation. I applied for numerous jobs, but my path has been very different than I could have imagined. I was blessed begin my marketing career as a communications strategy intern with Pathways Home, I began to consult local entrepreneurs within The Mix community, and Thanks to my mentor, I was able to consult for Regions Bank.
So, uh, how did you come to Fledging?
Shirley Hicks emailed me about job openings at Fledging following an article written by The Birmingham Times article about me. I explored the opportunity while in the midst of freelance consulting here and there. I applied for the job, went through the interview process and now I'm here and I like it.
What does a Digital Marketing Manager do at a growing hardware startup?
Lots of things! Probably the second most important component of a growing company. Digital Marketing is the present and future of traditional marketing, but it is a very vast discipline. Ranging from graphic design, video production, strategic planning, social media, SEO, and email marketing, a DMM is usually a multitasking expert with a creative eye for getting things done. Overall, I help our Channels and grow our marketing efforts so that we can achieve our objectives. This position is exciting because it’s challenging me to create a system that can work for Fledging for years as a sustainable hardware company.
What’s the most interesting thing about working at Fledging?
All of us are very different and it’s a melting pot of personalities. I believe one of our strengths on this team is the diversity that is built into our foundation. We all work with each other in ways that help us to learn more about ourselves and what the other person needs from us. For instance, our CEO and founder Weida Tan thinks differently than anyone I have ever known. I am a creative, he is an engineer. In order to effectively communicate to work together to bring sense to the way we both see the world. You have to work with people in a way that they can understand.
What’s the most challenging thing about working at Fledging?
The fact that the position is new. If there was a reference then I would be the genesis of that. Again, it’s about “forging the way” and being confident in the good work I’m doing.
What’s a fun fact about you?
I consider myself a bad dancer, it's all just very corny. I also really love cooking!
Want to learn more about Kenya, Digital Marketing, The Mix, cooking, painting, or Fledging?
Ask them at firstname.lastname@example.org
Interested in joining the team?