Young Guns: Bauer digital managing editor, Emily Kerr

Lindsay Bennett
By Lindsay Bennett | 16 June 2016

Our Young Guns profile takes a weekly look at some of the young talent aged 30 or under across the advertising, ad tech, marketing and media sector in Australia. It aims to shed light on the varying roles, people and companies across the buzzing industry. Last week we spoke to Web Profits head of social, Kath Chalhoub.

This week, we head to Sydney to speak to Emily Kerr, the digital managing editor of Bauer Media's young women's lifestyle portfolio.

How long have you been in the industry?

Five years.

Duration in current role/time at the company:

Two and a half years at Bauer and one year as digital managing editor.

What were you doing before this job and how did you get this gig?

In London, working on teen music mag We Love Pop. I upped sticks and moved to Sydney in 2013 and wouldn’t stop calling Cosmo’s then online editor until she eventually picked up the phone and agreed to let me come in for one day of freelance work. I never left.

Define your job in one word:


What were your real and cliché expectations of working in the industry?

Creative, hilarious people doing really cool things.

How does the reality match up?

All of the above.

How would you describe what the company does and what does your role involve?

Bauer Xcel distributes great digital content from awesome brands. In short, I’m in charge of making sure that content stays great. And that it hits as many eyeballs as possible.

Best thing about the industry you work in:

The way that everyone around you works themselves to the bone, but coming into work still feels like fun.

Any major hard learnings in the job so far?

In digital media you can never have enough resources or a large enough team – there are always more stories to be told, more people to engage with and more product updates to make.

If you had to switch over to another department, which would it be and why?

Product or dev. So I could build and fix everything myself.

What's exciting you about the industry right now? 

That it’s at a real turning point. Traffic isn’t as easy to come by and engagement is arguably more valuable, so the needle has to move and brands need to adapt. Now really is the time to be trying new things.

What concerns you about the industry and its future?

How over-saturated the market is becoming.

Who's your right hand person/who guides you day to day?

Lorna Gray is my senior producer on Cosmo and keeps my biggest site ticking over day to day. She’s so good that I never have to worry about it when I’m being held captive in endless meetings.

And your almighty mentor that you hope to dethrone?

Amy Odell. I love what she’s built at Cosmo US.

Career-wise, where do you see yourself in 2020 and how do you plan on getting there?

Still in denial about the fact that I need to get my head around virtual reality. Four years too late.

What is the elephant in the room? The thing that no one is talking about – but they should be.

That all it would take to topple the majority of digital media business models right now is one little algorithm tweak from Mark Zuckerberg.

Where do you turn for inspiration?

Hearst. They’re constantly innovating in the US and have some of the best people and brands in the business. Luckily I have a direct line to them!

Tell us one thing people at work don’t know about you?

That I’m currently answering these questions…

Favourite advert is:

Tom Hardy crying with his dog for Kleenex. Because duh.

I got into advertising/ad tech/marketing etc because:

I’m obsessed with good content, whether it’s writing it, reading it, watching it or sharing it. And I wanted to be Caitlyn Moran. (Dream big.)

If I wasn't doing this for a living, I'd be:

Pretty disappointed.

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