Quite the crucible for testing content.
Melissa Chapman has the job of chief content officer at Jungle. We caught up with Chapman to find out more about her daily routine.
Please describe your job: What do you do?
Melissa Chapman: My role as Chief Content Officer at Jungle Creations means I oversee the company’s global content strategy. The content team at Jungle is split into different departments including social, video, editorial, original production, licensing, strategy and creative studio.
I joined Jungle Creations in January 2016, becoming the company’s third employee. Since then, I’ve overseen the growth of the content team from one person to 75 people, building 12 new teams across London, New York and LA whilst growing Jungle Creations’ audience from one million to over 85 million followers and leading the business to become the most viewed company on Facebook.
As the business has grown my role has become more varied and I’ve been able to take on new challenges, including the launch of the company’s original programming and offline ventures.
Whereabouts do you sit within the organisation? Who do you report to?
Melissa Chapman: I lead the Content team and form part of senior management, reporting to our Founder & CEO, Jamie Bolding.
What kind of skills do you need to be effective in your role?
Melissa Chapman: This has definitely changed as the business and the team have grown. Initially my role was very heavily focused on creativity and an understanding of audience and platforms on a fairly granular level. While these skills are still fundamental, the need for business scale certainly shifted priorities.
The ability to manage people effectively and focus on developing a longer-term strategy have become a bigger priority. Knowing how and when to invest in projects, places and people is key, as well as a constant consideration of how your own departmental strategy feeds into that of the wider business.
Tell us about a typical working day…
Melissa Chapman: The start of my day hasn’t changed much since day one at Jungle, three years ago. I’m obsessed with logging on and checking the performance and metrics of all of the posts that went up the night before, including watching and often laughing with or drooling over a range of our video content.
Before I’ve left my bed, I’ve generally caught up on all of my emails and have done some preparation for the meetings ahead. Several coffees later and the day to day that follows varies massively. One day I’ll find myself hearing creative pitches for our own channels and our branded content, the next I’ll be in a meeting about menu development for our Twisted London delivery-only restaurant or the marketing progress around the launch of our Twisted Bar. Rarely does a day go by without a game of ping pong.
What do you love about your job?
Melissa Chapman: Trying not to sound like a cliché, my favourite part about working at Jungle is the people. Every day I’m surrounded by people full of passion and commitment; new ideas are conjured up and actioned on a daily basis and there’s a real sense of collective pride when we’re successful, from the biggest wins to the smallest. On top of that, having incredibly talented colleagues means I’m constantly learning and improving my skill set.
What kind of goals do you have? What are the most useful metrics and KPIs for measuring success?
Melissa Chapman: My fundamental goal is to make sure Jungle’s media brands are producing the best content on the internet, whether that’s measured via views, follower growth or the number of engagements.
The measurement for success is incredibly varied across different projects, it can be as standard as revenue numbers, engagement rates and web traffic but sometimes it can simply be receiving an email from a stranger across the world saying our content has helped them in some way.
What are your favourite tools to help you to get the job done?
Melissa Chapman: My team!
How did you end up working for a media business, and where might you go from here?
Melissa Chapman: I initially joined the media industry as a writer/reporter, having completed a degree in journalism. I quickly realised my creative passion bled into video and other formats and I started taking on roles which encompassed a wider range of these. I think I’ll always be involved in content in some capacity but I can see my role developing into areas outside of pure social media content and into other related businesses such as e-commerce and live events.
Which recent work have you admired?
Melissa Chapman: I loved the Hostel World campaign with Mariah Carey and the Dublin Bus Pride campaign, both were creative and engaging in their own way.
Do you have any advice for people who are starting out in your field?
Melissa Chapman: While I’ll always lean on instinct when making creative decisions, it’s really important not to let your own personal opinion overshadow the objective decision- making processes. Lean on data and insights as much as possible.
When you’re creating content for bespoke and loyal audiences, they’re the real decision makers.
p.s. Come to Jungle, we’re great!