Our Young Gun profile takes a look at some of the young talent across the advertising, adtech, marketing and media sector in Australia. It aims to shed light on the varying roles, people and companies across the buzzing industry.
Today we speak to Bauer Media digital managing editor, luxury and youth Mahalia Chang.
Time at the company:
I’ve been at Bauer Media since 2015, where I started with ELLE and later, Harper’s BAZAAR. I founded Bauer’s new Gen Z title, Syrup, in 2019. I’ve been doing a hybrid mix of both luxury and youth since 2020.
How long have you been in the industry?
How did you get here? Was this always the plan?
I “accidentally” moved over to Sydney from WA when I came to do a two-week internship as part of my master’s degree and then never left. I originally had my sights set on print, but it was the pace and agility of digital that won me over.
Who is your right hand person?
Lorna Gray, digital director, beauty, luxury, youth, is always there for brainstorms and strategy sessions.
What’s the best thing about the industry you work in?
No one day is ever the same.
And the biggest challenge?
No one day is ever the same.
Whose job have you set your sights on in the future?
Am I allowed to say ‘social media manager for the West Coast Eagles’? Just kidding, my heart is in digital, so hopefully I can continue to grow and expand here. The creation of Syrup put me in rooms with the marketing, audience development, commercial, sales and strategy teams, which I have found so fascinating and useful. I love the idea of continuing to help direct and guide brands in the future.
Where do you turn for inspiration?
Instagram, niche newsletters, podcasts and runways.
My favourite advert is:
I’ve always been a sucker for 90s fashion campaigns when art and beauty were more than enough to sell something in their own right. I had late 80s and 90s campaigns by Jil Sander tacked to my wall growing up, specifically the 1987 campaign and summer 1996 ones. Proof that the mere idea of luxury was just as marketable as the look of it.
Tell us one thing people at work don’t know about you?
I make a really good mac and cheese.
In five years' time I'll be:
Hopefully still in digital, hopefully still working with brands that I love and respect and finding new ways to innovate. The most exciting thing about being digitally-focussed is that the possibilities are almost endless and there are always ways we can get better, and do things that haven’t been done before. I’d also love to see how the industry works in other media capitals like London and New York (once the world isn’t in the grips of an international pandemic, of course)… or maybe I’ll be the social media manager for the West Coast Eagles?
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