Julia Knaggs, recent master's in agricultural communication program graduate and our former intern, joined our team full-time as an account associate. Keep reading to learn more about Julia's background and what she's most excited about in her new role.
Q: You’re joining our full-time team as an account associate, however, you’ve been a part of Slide Nine for almost a year. Tell us more about that.
A: I started as an intern at Slide Nine in May 2022 and really enjoyed working with the team. It was my first agency experience, but the S9 team was so supportive in helping me acclimate to agency life and learn as much as possible over the 12-week summer period. When I got the offer to continue in a part-time capacity with S9 while finishing my master’s degree, I jumped at the opportunity! And now, exactly a year later, I'm excited to continue in a full-time role.
Q: While interning with Slide Nine, you were working to earn your master’s degree. What did you study and what drew you to pursue higher education in that field?
A: I studied agricultural communication! I didn’t grow up with a farming background, but I had family who worked in food service and, as a result, understood all it took to get food from farm to table. I realized this background gave me a really cool opportunity to serve as a bridge between producers and consumers. The ag comm master’s program at Ohio State (Go Bucks!) allowed me to gain both theoretical and practical knowledge that would help me be a more effective communicator while working with both agricultural and non-agricultural audiences.
Q: What drew you to the communications field?
A: I wanted to be a million different things growing up, but I’ve always loved writing and problem solving — which are both necessary to communication! I also spent too much time on the Internet in middle school, so working with social media feels very familiar to me.
Q: What brings you joy at work? What inspires you?
A: My favorite thing is when I get to work on social content where I can infuse some humor and/or pop culture references, but I also find joy and inspiration in getting to work with a team that’s so supportive and good at what they do!
Q: How do you approach creating a memorable client experience?
A: While I’m wrapping up my first year in an agency setting, I’ve learned a lot about how to create a memorable client experience from S9’s mantra of “bump the lamp.” I try to pay attention to detail, focus on what matters most to the client, and create a seamless experience in whatever way I can.
Q: You’ve had some fascinating experiences working in the agricultural communications field before joining Slide Nine. What was that experience like?
A: I previously held internships with the Tennessee Department of Agriculture and Tennessee Farm Bureau Federation, where I gained experience in business development, event planning and cross-team collaboration. I also worked part-time as an undergraduate research assistant at the University of Tennessee at Martin and as a facilitator for the National FFA Organization. Each opportunity gave me a different perspective within the agriculture industry!
Q: What communications and PR trends are you keeping an eye on as we head into the second half of 2023?
A: I’m keeping an eye on all the different ways AI is expected to change our field. From creating written content to generating images and videos to mimicking people’s vocal patterns, it seems like the use of AI has blown up in just the past few months. I’m interested to see in what ways communications and PR professionals will use it to their advantage and in what ways these tools fall short.
Q: What excites you most about joining the Slide Nine team at a full-time capacity?
A: I’m excited about being able to dive into new projects and work with new account teams!
Q: Do you have any advice for those at a similar point in their career/younger professionals?
A: Learning what you don’t want to do is just as important as learning what you do want to do with your career! I’ve gone into internships thinking it would lead me to a certain type of job, only to realize that kind of role wouldn’t be a great fit for me. I also swore I would never work with social media because it was something I only wanted to use for fun, but now it’s my favorite thing to do at work. Go into every experience open-minded, and you’ll learn much more about yourself and what path to take!
Q: What tools/websites do you use to keep up with the latest trends and news?
A: Social media for sure—the TikTok algorithm has been especially good at informing me about the newest PR/marketing trends lately.
Q: What are some of your favorite industry-related accounts that you follow?
A: I have a few favs from TikTok. @mollybmcpherson has great crisis comms breakdowns for all sorts of current events. @girlbosstown is the best for celebrity PR predictions. @bylauracollazo also makes great content for content creators and digital marketers.