If you have ever been to the Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo, you have reaped the benefits of this amazing entrepreneur's incredible hard work. Alex Kingcott is the president of Shareworthy Content Lab, a fellow content marketing agency. I first met Alex while I was in university. Her PR firm visited our communications club on campus and took us through a "day in the life of a PR professional" simulation. I learned so much about what it really takes to work in PR and communications. I am in awe of Alex's brilliance, strategic insight and humble heart. Here's more of her story.
Tell me a little bit about yourself and your work. Where are you from? What do you do?
I am the president of Shareworthy Content Lab where I get to do PR, social media, media relations, and content marketing for a variety of Western Canadian businesses – often one-time events, productions, and campaigns. It’s never boring! Today, for example, I’m working on Calgary Comic & Entertainment Expo, Youth Singers of Calgary, Boom Goes The Drum, and Downstage Theatre. We help them tell their story better – become their own little content engines – by attracting media, engaging their community online, and creating content that tells their story.
I grew up in Red Deer and moved to Calgary as teenager. I was, and will certainly always be, a massive musical theatre nerd. That love of theatricality and storytelling probably informed a lot – or not, and I’m just a sucker for jazz hands. The best way to be my friend is to talk about musicals.
What inspires you to do what you do? How did you start doing this work?
I don’t think I knew about this job (PR) as a kid – certainly social media wasn’t around, so I’m not sure how my goals originally developed. The only thing I knew was that I loved the arts so I started there. An internship at Alberta Theatre Projects right after high school where I worked in every department from set building to fund development showed me I could be just an involved in the arts industry without actually being ON stage. I loved the work that the media and PR teams were doing to set expectations for an audience and get them excited, and realized that I’d always been that person in my family, school and group of friends so it felt natural.
Inspiration is really important to me now, because I own this business – I choose what I work on and what my team works on – so I have no one to blame but myself if the work feels like WORK. If I’m not excited about it, I don’t take it on. Simple as that. It’s a tough decision sometimes, but ultimately those decisions open up my time for opportunities that I love and can bring something valuable to.
What inspires you most about your community?
They’re do-ers. They make things, experience things, and listen when I say this is COOL and I know it’s weird or new but you should try it.
If you could give anyone who is starting out in your field one piece of advice, what would it be?
First and foremost: Work hard, and be nice to be people.
- Make friends with a good accountant, even if you don’t think you need one.
- Stay sane by using good tools (I preach the good word of Freshbooks).
- Finally, my first business mentor told me this: when you own your business no one is going to pat you on the head when you do something well or reach a goal – no one will review you or give you a raise. YOU are the boss. Make a list of the milestones you want to reach and attach a reward to them – a trip, a gift, a day off – whatever. Be disciplined about the work and the reward, or you’ll never find balance.
What is the best thing about your job and the worst thing?
Best: The internet. I can work anywhere and do super cool things.
Worst: The internet. It’s always on. If I could change anything I’d like for there to be one hour every day that it just turns off – just unplugs, globally – for one brief moment a day so we can all take a break.
How can people get in touch?
Do you know of a person, business, non-profit or other organization doing amazing work in Calgary? Tell me about it! Visit the Feature Friday page for more information!