Career Transitions: Broadcast to New Media

Ginger Geoffery Headshot

Q&A with Ginger Geoffery, Director of Social Marketing for The Mac Groups (and former WKBW-TV News Channel 7 Anchor).

Wondering what it takes to leave traditional media and join the social communications revolution?  Ginger Geoffery, Director of Social Marketing for The Mac Groups and former anchor for WKBW-TV News Channel 7 Buffalo, shares her comments on the transition.  Ginger joined The Mac Groups after a successful 12-year broadcasting career.

Q.  Can you share some background about yourself and your career?

A.  I grew up in Florida, graduated from the University of Florida, and came to Buffalo in 2001 for a reporting job at the now-defunct Empire Sports Network.  From there I moved to WKBW-TV where I started as news reporter before being promoted to weekend sports anchor, then weekend news anchor, and finally weekday morning and noon anchor.

Q. What made you decide to transition from broadcast media to Director of Social Marketing at The Mac Groups?  How did your experience at WKBW position you well for the career change? 

A.  In the nearly nine years that I worked for WKBW, I witnessed incredible changes in media.  Just one example:  When I started in 2004 Twitter and Facebook didn’t exist yet, but by the time I left WKBW this past summer, pushing out information on those social media platforms was an integral part of my job.  These days I get nearly all my news first from Twitter, and I know I’m not the only one.  Patterns are changing.  Younger people are not watching local TV news.  So, since I enjoy working with social media, it made sense for me to move with that shift — from traditional media to new media.

Q. What is your new role like? 

A. My new job as Director of Social Marketing for The Mac Groups is wonderfully fast-paced.  I was a bit concerned about missing the fast newsroom pace once I left TV, but that hasn’t been an issue.  At The Mac Groups we work with dozens of clients on their social media campaigns.  Those clients range from Ciminelli Real Estate Corporation, Anderson’s Frozen Custard, and Walden Galleria here locally, to actors Mark and Donnie Wahlberg on an international level with the restaurants they own.  I get to use my creativity for the clients, and I enjoy that.

Q. What do you enjoy most about your new role? 

A. One fantastic perk is I’m no longer waking up at 3:00 a.m.!  I’d never worked 9-5 hours in my life before this, so I’m enjoying a more normal life for the first time.

Beyond that though, it’s exciting to be a part of something that’s growing.  I’m so impressed with what Sean Macaluso, The Mac Groups founder, has accomplished since he started this company four years ago as the first social media agency in Western New York.  I hope to help the company continue to grow.

Q. Have there been any unexpected challenges in making the transition? 

A. There are plenty of challenges, but I can’t say they’re unexpected.  I’m still learning a lot in this new role, such as learning new ways to approach social media.  Using it from a marketing standpoint can be quite different from using it as a TV personality.

Q. What do you miss the most about working in broadcast media? 

A. I’m still working in media, just new media instead of traditional media.  There have been a couple of days so far when a big news story was breaking while I was at work.  I got updates about the breaking news through tweets, but it felt strange not to be in a newsroom gathering and reporting the information.

Q.  Any advice for someone making a similar career transition? 

A. You’ll know when you’re ready for it. Go for it and don’t look back.

Thanks Ginger!  And thanks also to AMDG’s @Marissa_Wilson for putting together the interview and post!

The Mac Groups specializes in full service social media and digital campaigns.  Check them out at www.themacgroups.com or @themacgroups on Twitter and Facebook.  Ginger Geoffery can be reached on Twitter @gingergeoffery or her via her blog GingerGeoffery.com.  

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