Member Spotlight: Taylor Coil
I'm in charge of product marketing, content, copywriting, email, PPC, and SEO at Tortuga. I'm also an opinion-giver (rather than a decision maker) on our product development and web design teams.
Here are the big projects I'm working on right now:
- Launching a new luggage collection for digital nomads (later this summer)
- Redesigning and slightly pivoting our blog
- Research, strategy, and prep work for a product launch currently slated for release in Q4
And, of course, marketing strategy in general. Big projects are fun to talk about, but they don't mean I get to ignore the day-to-day evergreen tasks I'm always working on (like conversion optimization, content strategy, product positioning, etc).
Why did you decide to go into marketing?
The first memory I have of making an intentional choice to go into marketing was while watching the movie Sliding Doors (on VHS!) as a kid. I thought, yeah, that's what I'm going to do. I think Gwyneth Paltrow's character was technically in PR - but I kept my options open. Once I got to college, I quickly discovered that I disliked all of my PR classes, so I pivoted a bit and did marketing internships instead. I prefer roles that are very analytical (versus, say, talking to people all day), so marketing is a great fit.
What do you like about working remotely?
For me, remote work is about freedom.
Working remotely means that my life dictates when, how, and where I work - not the other way around. I'm wholly in charge of my own existence, as insufferable as that sounds. My day-to-day schedule is irrelevant to my boss (our CEO) -- all that matters is that I'm doing great work. I'm not forced to work on someone else's terms. I'm quite headstrong and value the ability to dictate my own work life, thank you very much.
In regards to more direct applications, I love that nobody is monitoring my productivity -- just my output. If I'm struggling to get into the zone or am stuck on a problem, I walk away, sometimes for hours at a time, without anyone on our team noticing or caring. I'll do a lap around the reservoir in Central Park, or go to a workout class, or just veg on my couch for a little while until my head clears.
What are your tips for staying focused (especially when working remotely)?
I want to preface this with a caveat, since every remote article seems to mention tips for productivity at some point. Here's the thing: everyone struggles to stay focused regardless of where they're working. I get frustrated when people use "remote" to connote easily distracted work -- is it really better in an open office that you're required to visit every day? The difference is that the responsibility of focus is 100% on YOU when you're working remotely. You can't blame anyone else and you can't blame your situation if you're not productive.
Here's what works for me:
- Pen and paper to-do lists. I personally like the Productivity Planner.
- Noise cancelling headphones (I use the Bose in-ear versions). I need to be able to get into the zone, and blocking out sounds helps a lot.
- Carefully curated playlists. Uptempo for intense excel work, classical for writing, movie soundtracks for strategy, midtempo indie for emails and boring admin work.
- Pomodoros when I feel my productivity slipping.
- Mixing up where I work (sometimes). I have a few go-to "bases" and switch between them when I'm feeling laggard. I'm most commonly working from my apartment, The Commons, or Fueled Collective.
- Don't try to do too much. This one is the hardest.
What are your favorite places that you have traveled to?
I used to travel full-time (while working remotely, of course) before setting up a home base in NYC. Needless to say, it's hard for me to pick a favorite. Here are a few places that I loved:
- Cabo Polonio, Uruguay. It's a tiny little beach village with no electricity or running water. There are no roads to Cabo Polonio - you have to ride a 4x4 over seven kilometers of sand dunes to reach the hamlet. It's just as magical as it sounds.
- Dubrovnik, Croatia. This is the first spot I traveled to completely solo, and I spent a blissful two weeks there eating almost exclusively gelato.
- Porto, Portugal. I only spent two days there en route to Lisbon (which I also loved) and am kicking myself for not spending more time in Porto. It's a fantastic city.
- London. That's a boring answer compared to something like Cabo Polonio, but oh well. I really love London.
Why do you like using Croissant?
I love that I can work anywhere in the city. If I have a doctor's appointment or am meeting up with a friend, I'll work from a space that's convenient to whatever else I'm doing that day.
It's also great to have dedicated spaces to go (without commitment) if I'm feeling cooped up in my tiny apartment.