Hi there! My name is Angela Wasko and I believe it is our responsibility as Catholic Creative leaders to invest in the next generation of marketers. My career has involved working for socially responsible fashion companies, freelancing when I was unsure of my next career move, jumping to a science-based corporation of 90K employees and then moving into a marketing role at FOCUS (Fellowship of Catholic University Students). I’ve loved meeting many of you at the CC Summit and being a part of this growing movement.
I believe we need to raise up and invest in talented individuals who are driven by a deeper mission than just growing followings on Youtube and Instagram- we need a generation of creatives who want to spread the Kingdom of God (both online and in the pews), and who have the savvy to effectively lead in our culture. I mentor college students pursuing marketing careers and over the last few years I've worked closely with FOCUS on revising their internship program. Now, I’m excited to share with the CC Community about the new influencer outreach program we are launching for SEEK. I am partly excited about it because it is a new collaboration that will be opening new opportunities for young Catholic Creatives in the future, but I am also excited because the first influencers we've brought on are incredibly talented members of this community, so we want take a minute to celebrate them here!
For those who are asking this question, (maybe not those reading this blog, but it bears repeating to the church as a whole) Catholic millennials and Gen Z today are on their phones, engaging with others and the culture as a whole through social media. Instagram has more than one billion monthly active users and is the leading and preferred platform of social media for millennials today. Because of the decrease of traditional media among college students, here at FOCUS (Fellowship of Catholic University Students) we've boosted our social media presence, seeking to becoming a voice of Truth, Beauty and Goodness in our culture.
SEEK2019, our upcoming conference for thousands of young adults, provided us with a significant new opportunity to continue our mission to grow our social media.
To promote SEEK2019, FOCUS is highlighting young Catholic creatives — photographers, savvy social media users, bloggers, Podcasters and YouTubers — and inviting them to join their team as #SEEKpartners. The goal is to utilize their talents and credibility to invite more people to the event and expand the mission of the New Evangelization. The influencers will attend the conference and promote it through various platforms including Instagram, Facebook, personal blogs, and YouTube, among other avenues.
Right now we are recognizing the importance of reaching new audiences and are expanding our social media outreach to individuals who have a niche in the Catholic social media world, and also to popular Catholic Podcasters and YouTubers. This will allow those who are familiar with FOCUS initiatives (e.g. Bible studies, discipleship and internships) the opportunity to further build a relationship with the organization, but it will also help to raise up a new generation of creatives by giving them a voice in our community.
We recognize that, when it comes to reaching young people, we need to look at all avenues. The next generation is on social media every day – many every hour. We Catholics need to be right there with them. We also have seen the great talent many Catholic creatives possess, and we want to highlight their work to further the Kingdom and get people excited about SEEK2019!
We are excited to highlight a few of the CC community members who we've chosen to partner with!
Notable Podcasters and YouTubers will also attend SEEK2019, including That Catholic Couple, Pints With Aquinas and The Catholic Feminist. The event will include a space for them to record and engage with their audiences.
As much as FOCUS is receiving from these new collaborations, we hope to give back to our creative partners tenfold. FOCUS recognizes that these influencers and other creatives like them are the next leaders of the Church. Because of this we really desire to invest spiritually, intellectually, and professionally. As part of the influencer program, we'll be offering instruction in Catholic world view with emphasis on evangelization through beauty as well as other opportunities for professional development. Aside from exposure on FOCUS’ social media, influencers will receive instruction from well-developed Catholic photographers and an opportunity to engage with students with similar passions and ambitions.
To meet more of our influencers, follow @focuscatholic + #SEEK2019 and #SEEKpartner.
If you are interested in learning more about SEEK2019 or would like to register, head to www.seek2019.com. If you'd like to learn more about the influencer program, you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org!