Merritt Group Blog

Q&A With a Merritt Group-er: Get to Know Jessica Shapow

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Get to know who's on the Merritt Group team!

What do you do at Merritt Group?

I work as a Senior Account Executive on the Emerging Technology Group, and enjoy working closely with my team to deliver excellent media strategies for our clients while building leadership among their target audiences. As the emerging tech scene is constantly shifting, I love searching for new and integrated strategies to bring to the table and elevate our clients' brands. Additionally, I am an assistant producer for our new podcast, Lay of the Brand where I manage social media content, blogs and more!

What’s your greatest moment — whether in work, school or marketing/PR — so far?

While working at a previous agency, there was a new call for someone to step up and take the reigns of social media and influencer marketing programs for clients. I quickly and happily raised my hand, as I had a large drive to expand my capabilities and learn new techniques. My breakthrough moment came when I was put in charge of running a client’s influencer relations program for a new product launch. I got to do everything from A-Z – from researching influencers that were a good fit, to conducting the outreach and coordinating all of the materials for the campaign launch. It makes me proud to have realized from an early stage that learning new capabilities and skills would be crucial to my work. Every day brings something new to learn, and I’m thrilled to be continuing that growth at Merritt Group.

Who do you love to follow on Twitter or Instagram and why?

I primarily just look at the Twitter “Moments” section and trending hashtags of the day. It’s a quick and easy way for me to get the news of the day, and also most likely see some heartwarming story of a puppy or person. On Instagram, I’d say the bulk of the accounts I follow are home decor and home renovation accounts like @Roomporn, @Cabinfeed, @KateRumson and @Achridigest. I like to think that following them somehow makes me an expert in home design, and often dream of being the next Chip and Joanna Gaines. I also like to follow celebrities like Sophia Bush and others who are involved in activism and philanthropy.

What's your favorite piece of technology?

I’m lame, but it’s my tablet. It’s the best device for browsing and shopping, which is my version of therapy.

What’s the one gadget you think needs to be invented?

As an Army wife, I would love a gadget that could bridge the physical gap when you’re away from someone. Kind of like Big Bang Theory’s “kissing simulator,” but less creepy.

What’s your favorite thing about living in the Washington, D.C., area?

I recently moved here in the fall so I’m still exploring all that the D.C. area has to offer. I love the history that the area brings, and look forward to walking around D.C., Georgetown and Old Town Alexandria now that the weather is warming up. I also can’t wait to check out some great hiking and picnic spots to enjoy the great outdoors. Lady Bird Johnson Park and Great Falls Park are at the top of my list to visit.

What do you love to do when you are not working?

I like to think of myself as outdoorsy so in the spring and summer, I enjoy a good scenic hike. In the winters I take a lot of falls while snowboarding. I’m also looking forward to visiting some of the local VA vineyards and tasting some yummy wine.

What's the best book you've read recently?

I recently read “A Walk to Remember,” by Nicholas Sparks, and enjoyed seeing some of the differences as it compares to the movie. I’ve always been a big fan of that movie, and now I’m also a fan of the book.

What are your podcast recommendations?

Did I mention Merritt Group has a great, NEW podcast called Lay of the Brand? It keeps me up-to-date on the latest PR/marketing trends and tips for B2B and tech. Talking Points, hosted by marketing and communication experts Arik Hanson and Kevin Hunt, is one I also enjoy, because it really touches on all areas: PR, marketing, social media news and more. They feature guests from University experts and more who can speak to the various industries they work in. I also like to listen to NPR’s Word of Mouth produced by New Hampshire Public Radio to get my creative storytelling juices flowing.

What's your favorite Merritt Group memory?

Since joining Merritt Group I was able to volunteer in my first Spring Into Service Week, where I planted trees for a local park in McLean. Not only did I get some quality time with some folks outside of my internal Merritt Group practice team, but we bonded over the intense hard labor of digging holes and securing the seedlings into the ground. I’m excited to revisit the location a few months from now to see how our trees are growing and enjoy all the beautiful greenery.

What's one thing you can't live without?

My family (corny, I know). They are my best friends, my support system, my shoulder to cry on, my therapists and the people who inspire me the most. Each family member of mine brings something different to the table, and without all of them, it would be like missing pieces to a puzzle. Don’t get me wrong though, they still drive me absolutely bonkers.

What's the most interesting item on your desk?

My squirrel tea infuser. I’ve never had a cup of coffee, but sure do love my tea (preferably loose-leaf only). My mother-in-law bought me my squirrel infuser and he looks quite cute perched on my mug. I’ve yet to name him though - any ideas?

Get to know more of our staff in our ongoing Q&A blog series or visit Who We Are. Want to join our amazing team? Check out our open positions.

Topics: career staff profile