Would you ever go publisher side? Like Vice virtue, TBrand Studio? I need a better work life balance and seeking adjacent industries.

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This is just my experience, I’ve worked at 3 publishers and maybe I was just very unlucky - but I don’t recommend it. All 3 had tiny budgets, low wages, and terrible work life balance. It didn’t matter if they were “prestigious” - it was a mess. It’s totally unstable - layoffs and buy outs everywhere. You’d also have to start dealing with a sales team. Everywhere I worked, the sales team would go rogue, make their own decks to side step the marketing process and promise clients impossible deadlines on teeny budgets to make their sales quota. There’s zero accountability. If they made a sale, higher ups were happy and marketing/writers/creatives just had to catch up to “make magic happen.” I’m sure all of this sounds familiar - I wouldn’t say it’s a relief from agency life in any way :/

likesmart

Seconding everything here. The part that drove me away was the hyper focus on clicks and traffic. It was prioritized over ethics, brand building, creativity - everything. Then you also have to deal with the “you should feel lucky to work here” complex.

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I work at a media company on the design team and have a great experience. Great work life balance, the work i’m doing is not super creative all the time but since it’s a small team at a startuppy type of environment it’s extremely varied and they trust me to do things. I like it a lot more than the ad agency environments i was in

likesmart

Agree with the comments above. I worked in publishing for 10 years before switching to marketing. Unfortunately, publishers really undervalue their employees – Everyone is grossly underpaid and easily disposable (think $40k for a junior art director). Giving title bumps without pay increases was the norm. I thought work/life balance was good though. My employers were print publishing giants who didn’t know how to pivot and prioritize digital. I worked on a couple diff teams creating cool digital products (with positive engagement stats) but the company eventually scrapped both teams (layoffs) because they didn’t update their subscription model to capitalize on any digital engagement. The problem stems from leadership, of course. I worked with some insanely talented people, but in the end their craft & ability didn’t matter.

I’ve worked at a media company that was digital first. The pay is lower than I could get at an agency but the balance is way better. So choose your poison

Thanks for all the responses. Got to say, I’m now put off!

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