Melissa Popp is a Content Strategy Director with 20+ years of experience and this is her second time being a mentor at the FCDC.
We had an insightful conversation with Melissa about her experience as as an content marketing mentor to FCDC member Chidinma Nwanorue.
Melissa shares her reason for being a mentor at the FCDC, the key to having a successful mentorship and much more!
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Their guidance and support will go a long way in helping our members on their freelancing journey as having a mentor can be a game-changer.
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Name: Melissa Popp
What She Does: Content Strategy Director at RicketyRoo.
Her Mentee: Chidinma Nwanorue
Noteworthy: This is her second time as a mentor at the FCDC!
She believes in the power of a good story, and she uses this belief to transform narratives into content that not only enhances user experience but also propels conversion goals.
Hi Melissa. thank you so much for doing this, this is your second time becoming a mentor at the FCDC. I’d love to know why you decided to become a mentor the first time around at the FCDC.
Definitely, well, you know, I’ve been a big fan and follower of Chima forever. She’s doing incredible things for content, with this program and everything
So when the mentorship started, I was like, “Oh, this is a great opportunity for me to give back.”
Just seeing all the success stories, the jobs people are landing, the skills they’re learning, others who are devoting their time to mentorship, and the different programs you are offering.
I just was like, this is the place I want to be. This is where I want to devote my time to helping people and I just love helping people.
Anybody who knows me, knows, you can ask me just about anything, and I’ll make time for it.
That’s amazing. So the second time around, is there a different reason why you wanted to be a mentor again?
Yeah, I think it’s the same reasons for sure and I had time on my schedule
And I was like, yeah let me do this again. I also had a great time last time
I’ve learned from this too and I learned from the people I work with as a mentor.
So I think it’s a mutually beneficial way to share knowledge with one another.
Awesome. So you’re the mentor to Chidinma Nwanorue for the content marketing track. I feel like the first session is the most important because that’s where you get the first impressions, setting goals, and everything. So how was that first session for you? How was it for you?
Oh, it was awesome!
Whenever I start that first session with someone, you know, I want to get to know them.
What are they up to? What do they want to do? and not just with what we do in marketing, but you know who they are as a human being.
I think that connection in that first session is so important. If you don’t hit it off with your mentee or they don’t hit it off with you. You’re not going to go anywhere and there’s not gonna be enough trust there to build.
But with each session, we’re learning from one another, and I love it when she’s sharing her insights and what she’s learning.
It’s awesome to see and it makes me feel good.
I’m really happy to hear that. So, what changes have you seen in Chidinma before the mentorship? And what changes are you seeing now? Overall, what progress do you feel she has made so far?
We’ve been working on content briefing, learning more about the funnel, and how to build content that converts.
And with every content brief and production document she shared with me, I see progress.
I see the question she’s asked from the previous sessions, she integrates my answers into what she’s doing and everything is getting better.
One of the most awesome things about the mentorship we’re doing is the questions being asked because, the more questions you have, the more you can learn from them and integrate them into anything you’re doing.
I think that’s the biggest takeaway I see from her, before and after each session.
That’s amazing. So like you mentioned before, you said it’s a mutually like it’s a mutually beneficial situation and that you’ve learnt a lot too. Could you tell me about what you’ve learned so far from this whole experience?
Definitely. So when, when it comes to mentorship, I’m always looking for opportunities to learn from who I’m partnered with.
One of the best things I learned each session is how to explain things from a very high level into a layman’s person terms.
Sometimes, the longer we do this in our industry, we forget how to talk to people and how to teach people.
So each session is an opportunity for me to take what I know at a high level, and bring it down, and help someone learn from it, and then grow from what they’re learning.
That’s lovely. So, I like to relate everything to food because I’m a foodie. What do you think are the key ingredients and recipes that make for a successful mentorship?
I think communication- open and honest communication.
The mentor is taking time out of their schedule, to be present, to listen to the mentee, and to help.
I think the mentees coming to these sessions and being willing to talk about the issues they’re facing, the questions they have that they’re scared to ask because they might feel that someone who knows more than them might look down on them.
I think that communication is key that helps build trust between the two people involved.
But I think too, the more vulnerable you can be during a mentorship program, the more you can take away from it.
If you’re willing to learn, you’re willing to grow, there’s no shame in that there’s there shouldn’t be any fear or anxiety. But we all know the world makes us think differently.
So I think that communication is really the key ingredient, like the number one ingredient, to have a successful mentorship.
Alright. Thank you so much. Would you encourage others in the industry to sign up to become mentors at the FCDC? At the FCDC? And if yes, why?
I think everyone should give back through mentorship through some form of education, even if you don’t have time to do a full mentorship program, maybe partner up and do a learning session to teach something.
One of the greatest ways we can continue to learn in our industry is by sharing knowledge and helping others.
One of the biggest reasons I love doing the mentorship is that it pushes me beyond my limits.
It helps me grow as a leader, as a mentor, and as an educator.
I think the more that we can put ourselves out there and to do that in programs like with the FCDC, or other mentorship programs out there, the better off we’re going to be as marketers and just as awesome human beings.
Wow, thank you so much, Melissa. Thank you so much, again for mentoring at the FCDC for the second time. We really appreciate your time and you giving back.
Well, thank you for having me. I love what you all are doing and I want to keep supporting however I can.
Connect with Melissa on Linkedin and Twitter.
Passionate about content and diversity, Jadesola is a content writer. In her free time, with a cup of coffee in hand, she binges on reality shows.
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