The MarketHer

The MarketHer / Francis Scialabba


What WeWork’s former head of social media has learned from running a job board for women throughout the pandemic

Marketing Brew sat down with Lia Zneimer to hear more about marketing industry hiring trends she’s seen in the past year.

· 7 min read

In the fall of 2019, WeWork laid off thousands of employees as the business that would eventually spawn a juicy documentary crumbled.

Lia Zneimer, who served as WeWork's head of social media, wasn't laid off. But as she watched her former colleagues—many of whom were women who’d held marketing positions at the company—look for work, she wanted to help; she felt as though they were “scrappy, resilient, talented people who honestly could turn hay into gold.” That's how The MarketHer, a newsletter that curates marketing jobs for women, was born.

Through The MarketHer, Zneimer wanted to make it easier for her former colleagues to find opportunities. Plus, it was a side hustle that allowed her to flex skills outside social media.

Since then, the newsletter has expanded outside of the WeWork bubble—now, anyone who works in the marketing or creative industries can subscribe to the newsletter or submit a job opening. According to Zneimer, she hasn't monetized The MarketHer or its website yet, though she told Marketing Brew she’s working on some possible revenue stream opportunities.

“It really started from a place of wanting to do good and give back in some way. And so it's just me. It's a time-consuming process at the moment, all done by hand,” Zneimer explained.

The MarketHer has evolved into a community where Zneimer and her peers find the best women for the jobs available. This involves introducing job seekers to employers and highlighting women on the hunt for employment via The MarketHer’s website.

Much of her role involves chatting with her network to find open marketing positions, meaning Zneimer has seen what jobs were popular pre-pandemic, what types of positions took a hit, and which ones are coming back...or being invented as we speak.

Marketing Brew sat down with Zneimer to learn more about hiring trends she’s seen during the pandemic and how remote work has impacted marketing opportunities.

This interview has been lightly edited for length and clarity.

Marketing Brew: You started this newsletter before the pandemic began. What are some of the hiring trends you’ve seen throughout the past year, particularly as they pertain to women?

Lia Zneimer: I've seen an increased focus on hiring women specifically looking to get back into the workforce after sacrificing their careers in order to provide full-time childcare during the pandemic. There’s more generosity in terms of understanding gaps on resumes. I think employers have more empathy than they did in the past.

MB: Tell me what the newsletter's shown you about how marketing industry roles have changed throughout the pandemic.

LZ: As layoffs began more broadly over the course of the pandemic, available marketing roles definitely saw a decrease. But they bounced back more quickly than a lot of other industries. There was just this need for storytelling throughout the pandemic. So many marketing roles have the luxury of being remote jobs that can be done from anywhere, which is amazing. The remote work movement really enabled people to apply for positions that they might not have otherwise had a chance to.

I've seen a huge increase in the number of roles that offer remote flexibility, more flexibility than what I was seeing in 2019 when the newsletter first started. Back then I was super mindful of trying to include roles based in cities other than New York, LA, and San Francisco. At this point, it's a very even split when it comes to remote opportunities.

MB: You mentioned that companies are making a concerted effort to hire women who left the workforce because of the pandemic. Can you share an example?

LZ: One of the companies that I’m featuring in an upcoming edition of The MarketHer is doing this amazing thing: They are purposely and intentionally hiring women who don't necessarily have traditional backgrounds in their industry. They'll provide the training and the resources needed in order to be successful in these roles, helping women get back on their feet post-pandemic, which I think is really cool. I do think we might see more of that as the world comes back from this past year. Overall, I’m definitely seeing companies make more of an effort to be inclusive of women and of various lifestyle changes.

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MB: Do you have any way of gauging how many women are looking for jobs right now, versus during the height of the pandemic?

LZ: I noticed a spike in subscriptions come November 2020 through March of 2021. It started out with a surge of subscriptions, then trickled off a bit, then boomed again in Q4.

I was actually kind of surprised by it because I feel like a lot of companies pre-Covid were hesitant to hire in Q4, given budget constraints and whatnot. But I feel as if it was folks trying to get ahead of the 2021 New Year’s resolution job search bandwagon.

MB: What was the most common complaint from women in the marketing industry trying to find jobs before the pandemic?

LZ: Pre-pandemic, I think a lot of general job search frustrations stemmed from not feeling like there was a hand crafted or curated process. It just felt like blindly applying to companies through LinkedIn. You hoped you knew someone who worked there that you could reach out to, but it didn't feel as personal.

MB: And how did those frustrations change during the pandemic? Were they ever addressed?

LZ: There are some really amazing marketing job hunting resources that have grown and come from this. The need for services or newsletters like The MarketHer or companies like Teal has increased. I hope there are more companies like these that come about. I'm going to be really curious to see how that unfolds, and honestly, how many people want to go back to the traditional nine to five in an office, now that they've had a taste of something different for a little bit.

MB: Did the pandemic affect the types of roles listed in The MarketHer in terms of seniority?

LZ: People started making career changes out of necessity, not choice. There was an interesting shift: Because so many folks were out of work, more senior applicants applied to things they were probably overqualified for. It caused a chain reaction in terms of making it harder for a younger set of people to get their foot in the door.

But a beautiful thing that came out of it is the fact that a lot of folks decided to go independent, or start freelancing, or start their own businesses in the wake of Covid-19. It led to a sort of rebirth.

MB: What types of jobs have you seen becoming increasingly available in the past year?

LZ: The two that come to mind are related to events and TikTok.

There had been quite a few event roles available in late 2019, early 2020. And then they fell off for several months—people were just not hiring for events. And then there was a little bit of a surge with virtual event planning. Those roles are definitely on the rise again with Covid-19 restrictions lifting and folks getting back to real life events.

Another one that's been interesting to see unfold over the course of the pandemic is the specific need for TikTok content creators. That was definitely not something I'd seen when the newsletter first started in 2019. Those TikTok roles are great for those in their early twenties looking for a foothold in the social media marketing space.

MB: What’s the biggest challenge for women in the marketing industry right now?

LZ: My hope is that companies will take salaries seriously for women and bring them up to par with what men have made for so long.

Get marketing news you'll actually want to read

Marketing Brew informs marketing pros of the latest on brand strategy, social media, and ad tech via our weekday newsletter, virtual events, marketing conferences, and digital guides.