This journalist built her marketing career upon her skills. (via Chelsea Castle)

Chelsea Castle

When starting careers we often feel like stepping into a maze without a clear destination.

However, every role assumed and each challenge confronted shapes our aspirations.

And all the skills we acquire are not just checkboxes on our resumes, they are tools that can help us face new challenges when transitioning to new roles.

So the key is to recognize the value of our skills and understand its adaptability across different roles.

Build a new job upon a current job

Building a job upon another job sometimes requires a strategic approach.

If you know what you’re aiming for, you should know which skills you have that are transferable and can be applied across a new role in your desired industry. 

Recognizing these skills will help you recognize new opportunities and facilitate smoother transitions between roles.

But sometimes it has nothing to do with strategic thinking.

At times, it involves simply rearranging building blocks.

Job changes may occur out of curiosity or necessity, which makes you explore new roles.

That’s when you find yourself drawing upon existing skills from your arsenal while also acquiring new ones, contributing to your professional growth.

This happened to Chelsea Castle who built an amazing content career after starting as a journalist.

Her transition into content marketing shows that you can organically build upon your existing skill set, leading to a fulfilling and successful career in a new domain.

Who is Chelsea Castle?

In a few words on LinkedIn, Chelsea sums up all her career: “Journalist turned content strategist and marketer. 12+ years experience. 6x content leader.”

She started her career as a writer and journalist contributing to different publications from Ohio.

Then she took the role of Marketing Manager at Ologie where she led the marketing across all channels and mediums.

It was during this time when, I suppose, she realized she could make a difference in the content department because after a couple of years she switched to the position of Digital Content Manager at Ologie.

After that all the positions she had at CM Group, Chili Piper were Head of Content or Director of Content Marketing.

Now she currently works for Lavender.ai as Senior Director of Brand and… you guessed it, Content.

Besides her job, like everyone at Lavender, she invests her time building her personal brand on LinkedIn.

She has already built an audience of 8,300 followers to whom she shares content, ideas, and inspiring messages.

How did Chelsea expand her professional reach and why is she a B2B creator?

  1. From journalist to Director of Brand and Content
  2. Building her personal brand
  3. Lavender Evangelist

A. From journalist to Director of Brand and Content

In an interview, Chelsea reflected on the influence of her journalism background on their career.

The first thing she talks about is that what she learned in journalism is that readers are selfish.

That’s why she always keeps in mind the reader’s question “What’s in it for me?” when creating content.

This helps her create content that compels readers to engage.

To compel them she uses the art of storytelling which is a skill she learned in journalism, which also helps her in content marketing. 

She also talks about her interview skills she cultivated in journalism and which are useful in her job.

Building up her interview skills she learned to connect with different people, understand diverse perspectives, and ultimately craft engaging stories.

She knows that marketing and sales are all about trust.

But it’s hard to establish trust without being the voice of authority because she was not an expert in the stories she wrote about and she’s neither a sales expert at Lavender.

Here is where her journalistic mindset comes into play.

She has a deep understanding of the subject matter plus she focuses on building connections with the audience, fans, customers, and potential clients to create that sense of trust and credibility.

The wide array of skills acquired in journalism helped her in her marketing career.

Her skills developed as she continued to work with all types of people in different positions.

It made her more efficient in creating effective processes, building teams, adapting to different situations, and being as efficient as she can. 

Despite a personal inclination towards leadership, in her current role at Lavender, she is engaged in executing tasks, building strategy, and creating content.

She easily adapts and has the ability to assume different roles within a professional setting.

Probably her team at Lavender has to do something with it as well.

Everyone in the Lavender team from developers to marketers have fun, are highly collaborative, have a genuine love for their work, and have a mental commitment to helping customers.

B. Building her personal brand

Like Jen Allen-Knuth, Todd Clouser, or Will Aitken, Chelsea started to invest more of her time building her personal brand on LinkedIn.

Each one of them has her special skills and uses them to create their brand. Jen and Will talk about sales, Todd talks about marketing and creates funny videos, while Chelsea talks about content.

Her advice is great for people who are into content marketing or want to update their skills.

Some of Chelsea’s posts are long and descriptive, but she knows how to keep you hooked.

In a LinkedIn post she wrote about an article she created a while back that was stuffed with words and hard to read.

She talked about what she discovered after inserting the article into the Hemingway app and ended the post offering a lot of helpful tips on creating clear content.

Before you read it, I have to warn you.

She wrote about not inserting more than two commas when writing and now I feel stress and count them in my writing as I write this article.

So be aware when reading her posts about content.

They make you more conscious when writing.

Chelsea has strong opinions in terms of content and one of them is against gated content.

She writes about it on her LinkedIn page and on different posts.

But what I like about her is that she took time to research, rethink her statement, and talk about this matter. 

Even if she believes in something she is open to hearing people disagreeing with her.

Part of her personal brand are the LinkedIn posts about parenting.

I think this is what makes her unique.

I haven’t seen anybody yet to compare marketing with having a toddler so often like Chelsea does.

Besides creating her audience around the content topic, she creates a niche audience of marketers with kids.

These posts encourage parent marketers to comment and discuss around and create a sense of community.

In one of her LinkedIn posts she draws analogies between working in marketing and dealing with the challenges of parenting.

Chelsea also talks about different approaches that can be applied universally by giving an example of her parenting hacks.

Chelsea talked about her child’s habit of saying thank you.

She emphasizes that they don’t explicitly teach or tell their child to say thank you.

Instead, Chelsea and her partner model the behavior themselves.

So now, their child constantly says thank you, demonstrating the effectiveness of the “show don’t tell” approach.

Chelsea uses this parenting experience as a metaphor for broader life lessons. 

She suggests that the concept of “show don’t tell” is not only applicable in parenting but also in various aspects of work and life. 

She relates it to messaging, leadership, collaboration, trust, and positioning. 

The overarching message is that actions speak louder than words, and demonstrating behaviors or qualities is more powerful than simply talking about them.

Another type of content Chelsea creates is inspirational posts.

And what I like about her posts is that they are short and leave you to draw ideas from them.

Her messages hit differently for her audience and they instantly engage with her post leaving comments and reactions.

C. Lavender Evangelist

Just like all the other Lavender marketing or sales employees, Chelsea is a huge supporter of her other colleagues and talks about them in her posts.

The Lavender employees are like a highschool basketball team you would have liked to be part of.

They all respect each other, have fun, and win at their job.

She creates posts talking about meeting Will Aitken, about Rayna van Beuzekon, and she often talks about Todd Clouser.

In one of her gratitude posts for 2023, Chelsea mentions all her Lavender team for being the best. 

To the absolute dream team, Rayna van Beuzekom 🦕, Will Aitken, Todd Clouser, Jen Allen-Knuth — I would say, “Name a better team, I’ll wait,” but I’d be waiting for f’ing ever. Because they’re the best, the brightest, the funnest, and the funniest. You all support me and inspire me every day. 

She also is a supporter of other businesses her colleagues are part of like Rayna van Beuzekom who’s part of Commsor.

What can B2B creators learn from Chelsea?

1. Build upon what you have

Chelsea has a lot of content creation and strategy expertise and she takes advantage of it.

She uses in her daily work at Lavender trying to understand the customers and know all about the subject matter.

But she also uses it to build her personal brand on LinkedIn.

Storytelling techniques, analogies, transforming complex topics into clear and concise content, she uses them.

So you can align your personal brand with your professional expertise. 

You can create a narrative that reflects your skills and experiences to enhance credibility within your industry.

2. Use analogies

I wanted to put this separately as a lesson because Chelsea shows us a simple writing technique that everyone can use.

Chelsea’s use of analogies, such as comparing marketing to having a toddler or comparing your product with the cat’s bed showcases creativity in content creation. 

Analogies are really helpful to simplify complex B2B concepts, or any other topics, and make them more accessible and engaging for your audience.

3. Contributing to building a community

Chelsea supports her colleagues and often talks about the positive work culture they have at Lavender.

She and all the other team members know how important it is to social proof that Lavender is a great place to work for because the people are collaborative and enjoy working there.

This positive energy has a great impact on customers as well.

Customers who see the culture are more inclined to purchase the product.

By talking about the company they work for, the people they collaborate with, all the Lavender team members contribute to building a brand community and bring the sales up.

Final Thoughts

Transitioning from a journalist to a Director of Content and Brand, Chelsea shows continuous learning and adaptability throughout her career.

Working within the creative environment at Lavender, it made Chelsea speak her mind and cultivate a greater sense of courage which helped her build her personal brand.

This openness might position her as a thought leader and pave the way for more leadership opportunities and collaborations.

Cannot wait to see what lies ahead for Chelsea!