Introducing: Jillian Cote
Marketing Associate, Professional Maker of Mix-Tapes, and Appreciator of Living “The Good Life”.
Defining “The Good Life”:
Q: Tell us about “The Good Life” and what it means to you? How does this perspective impact how you approach your own life, personally and professionally?
The best thing about “The Good Life” is that it is completely subjective to where you are at any particular point in life, and it’s never fixed – no need to worry about something for eternity! Right now for me, a good life is centered around gratitude and opportunity as I make my way through my final year in college. It’s also about being cognizant of the world around me and taking every instance (both good and bad) to deepen my sense of relativity and purpose. A good life, to me, is one of fulfillment and lifelong learning, two goals that can’t really be reached without risk involved. This perspective definitely impacts my life in many aspects, namely in the sense that it removes unrealistic goals of perfection and constant positivity. Growing and evolving is never a straight path, and it’s imperative to realize that both professionally and personally. Perfection denotes lack of mistakes, and lack of mistakes equates to lost learning opportunities. An ideal life does not always equate to a good one! Balance helps us grow, like the Yin and Yang.
Influences and Inspiration:
Q: You’ve worked with a wide range of clients, aiding them in content creation and brand direction. Was there a particular project or client that made you realize what brings you the most joy as a creative professional?
Working with the Lindsey Vonn Foundation has been such a joy thus far, and I think most of this joy stems from being personally connected to their mission. The foundation believes that every girl can embrace who they are, define their own future, and change the world. As a young woman myself, I absolutely love seeing the impact they make on girls in underserved communities and the lengths they go to foster confidence in our future generation of female leaders. When I take on projects for the foundation, I do think of my younger self, but I think about my softball-star sister even more so, as she fits perfectly within this demographic the foundation wants to reach. It’s personal connections like this that take me to a deeper level of understanding with the initiatives I help deliver. I take great pride in my position to assist them in uplifting their message – having a client’s purpose resonate with me truly makes the work feel less like a task and more like a passion project.
The Power of Music & Creativity:
Q: We’ve heard you have a knack for curating music playlists. How does music influence your creative process, especially when it comes to marketing and graphic design?
When I’m working on graphic design projects, I’m almost always listening to music as it seems to kick all creative senses into high gear. I approach a lot of concepts in a very visual way, and music is no different. I love atmospheric elements that make a song sound spacious and three-dimensional to my brain. The more a song fills up this hypothetical visual space in my mind, the more I enjoy the song, as it creates an auditory environment for me that I can lock into. Beyond visual thinking, I believe that music is a highly energetic force. Songs that have a higher BPM or a more upbeat sound undoubtedly affect my mood the second I press play, which is a great feature of music in my creative process when I’m feeling uninspired or unenergetic. Music ultimately heavily assists in my ability to “flow” through creative marketing projects – it fills up empty noise and allows me to focus on creative instinct, as if I’m working on autopilot.
In terms of what music I listen to, it truly is anything and everything depending on the day. I love oldies, I love house music, I love hip-hop… I’ll even listen to classical music on occasion! Curating playlists based on the week, sound, or just a concept is so fun to do when you don’t limit yourself to what you listen to. My artist of the moment is Sports – the intro to their song Shiggy perfectly encapsulates what I mean by filling a space with sound. However… my all time favorite song has to be Dreams by Fleetwood Mac.
Here is a recent playlist that gives you a glimpse into some of my musical leanings.
Q: One of your greatest passions is exploring new cities. Do these explorations impact your professional creativity, and if so, how? Also, which city has left the most significant imprint on you and why?
Circling back to my idea of “The Good Life”, traveling and expanding my worldview both fit within the qualifications! Multicultural exposure is so important as there are a multitude of ways people experience life despite being on the same planet. I think cities in particular are such an incredible collaboration of these experiences across the globe, which is why I love exploring them. I definitely believe that these explorations have impacted my professional creativity in a bit of an abstract way, especially through lessons like open-mindedness and finding comfort in unfamiliarity. In terms of imprint, it really depends on the context! Coming from right outside of Portland, Maine, Boston has always been a second home to me, and Phoenix has truly been an incredible introduction to the southwest these past four years. However, my experiences abroad in Lyon have never left my mind as both a francophile and a creator! The history and culmination of cultures spanning over a millenia was so incredible to witness. I particularly loved the creative spontaneity that I found within the city streets – musicians would be playing, people would be dancing… there was always an air of finding pleasure in the simple things, and I’ll always hold that with me.
Q: Your background in marketing and business language & culture is fascinating. How have these insights into different cultures shaped your approach to marketing and content creation?
Being able to study marketing in both the American and French spheres through my Business Language & Culture degree has been so incredibly fascinating. Focusing on specifics, my studies in France taught me to value a leisurely life while still being able to be on top of it all – being busy doesn’t always equate to feeling stressed if you have the right resources! While general cultural norms may vary from culture to culture, my insights have solidified one thing about marketing – regardless of the culture you’re in, the number one priority is to connect and relate to the people in your audience. I always enjoy finding bridges between different cultures like this because it proves that we’re all on this planet trying to figure everything out together in one way or another. As we move toward an increasingly interconnected globe, I’m excited to see what the future of international business has in store for us.