Content marketer Rebecca Moy (US) has been living and working in Spain for over a decade. She tells us how she fell into the content industry over the years and eventually tapped into the Spanish tech and startup scene, where she is today.

Rebecca Moy

  • Name: Rebecca Moy
  • Where are you based? Madrid, Spain 
  • Current position/company: Content Marketer, Nextail Labs
  • Where are you originally from? Stratford, Connecticut
  • What did you study? BA in Journalism & Spanish, MA in Communication Studies
  • What countries have you lived/worked in? USA, Spain
  • What languages do you speak? English and Spanish

How did you end up working in the content and/or marketing industry?

Mostly by surprise, though it makes total sense looking back.

This winter, I cleaned out the family home attic. While sorting through my past lives, I found a pile of newsletters and cassette “newscasts” I’d made from ages six to 11. Unsurprisingly, I went on to study journalism in college and communications studies in grad school. 

Before focusing on a professional career, I decided to move to Madrid for a year (still here 12 years later). I flew over without a job, and staying meant relying on my skills to find work. In my case, these were English, writing, and figuring things out. 

After a variety of language-related jobs (education, editing, translation), I tapped into the Spanish tech and startup scene. I’m currently the Content Marketer at Nextail, which develops AI and machine learning technology for fashion merchandising. Seriously cool stuff.

What’s your favorite content campaign ever (yours or someone else’s)?

A recent favorite is Uniqlo’s partnering with TikTok for a really successful user-generated digital content campaign. The retailer encouraged users to upload their own TikTok videos wearing branded t-shirts, using the #UTPlayYourWorld hashtag and jingle. Selected videos were streamed across Uniqlo stores around the world and on the brand’s social media accounts.

There’s a lot to love about this campaign: It provides engaging and relevant content to participants because they make it themselves. It builds a brand community with potentially millions of Gen-Zers who make up the majority of TikTok users. It blurs the line between physical and online shopping channels, the goal of most retailers today. And it’s fun—who wouldn’t want to be TikTok famous?

What’s a normal work day for you like?

While this depends on my current projects, a normal day usually consists of some combination of the following: Check Slack then check email and newsletters for items to tweet later. Check calendars: content, social media, daily meetings. Research. Write. Research. Re-write. Check on LinkedIn and website KPIs. Write, write, write.

What are the top 3 skills you need to do your job?  

  1. Detective skills: When on a tight deadline (always), I need to make sure I’m asking the right people the right questions, especially when it comes to more technical content. I try to make sure that I go into these conversations having done research as I’m asking others to spare their precious time to explain things to me. I try to ask questions with the most bang for their buck.
  2. Curiosity : One of the best parts about doing content is the ability to become conversant with a variety of (sometimes very random) topics. The more I learn, the more I want to know, which is great because I get to do that for a living. I never would have thought I’d be able to jump in on conversations about artificial intelligence in the fashion industry—a great party trick! Plus, it makes work feel less like work, and more like personal enrichment.
  3. Good judgement: This goes for everything including communicating and negotiating realistic deadlines, considering future content scalability, and deciding which content types are the best investment to meet goals. It’s easy to get excited about all of the different content possibilities. But it’s also easy to bite off more than you can chew, especially if you’re the only content person in your company.

What is the biggest mistake you’ve made in your career?

My Gen X side says “delaying the pursuit of a professional career in search of adventure.” My Millennial side says “not being confident enough to think I could.” I guess they’re both saying the same thing.

What’s unique about the content/marketing industries in Europe?  

The importance of localization in such a relatively small region is particularly interesting here. There are so many languages, cultures and politics involved, so you really have to know exactly who your target audience is to engage them properly. 

If you have a more international reach, you have to be more inclusive, which can also be challenging. Having a team of content people that include translators and localizers is a luxury.

How has the European content and marketing industry changed in the past years?

I can only really speak to my experience in Spain, but I feel that many companies here are taking content creation much more seriously. This is especially true as the startup and tech scene continues to grow at a global level. It’s important to demonstrate thought leadership and brand strength, especially for the former if the idea is to earn trust (and funding) to scale up on a massive level.

What is the biggest challenge facing the European content and marketing industry in the next 5 years?

Cutting through the noise. As companies and individuals continue to recognize the value in content creation, some voices will rise to the top better than others. We’ll have to continue to look for new ways to engage and thought-provoke so we don’t get drowned out.

What’s your biggest piece of advice for people and businesses looking to break into the content marketing industries in Europe?

To people: Go for it. Start writing, start networking and start applying. Companies are increasingly realizing they need someone to do this type of work. It might as well be you!

To the companies: You aren’t already doing this? Your competitors most likely already are. Hire the person above and give them a chance. Don’t be afraid to give a voice to your brand. 

Quick-fire round: 

  • Favorite social network? Instagram. I’m a sucker for memes!
  • Long-form or short-form? Long-form is what I do best, though I have a lot of respect for short-form. It’s harder than it looks!
  • Content marketing or branded content? Content marketing.
  • Favorite book? “The Joy Luck Club” by Amy Tan is one.
  • First thing you do in the morning? Honestly? Check my phone.
  • Language you wish you spoke. Un jour, je parlerai français sans avoir à vérifier sur Google Translate.
  • Smart or casual? I like smart done casually in both writing and fashion.
  • Most important wardrobe item? High-top Converse

Rebecca Moy

Rebecca has been in Spain since the three kings brought her in 2008, right in time for the financial crisis. She’s been hustling ever since. Notable achievements since include: Living without a bank account for three and a half years, accompanying 90 college students to Seville and surviving (students too!), getting a Spanish driver’s licence on the fourth try, and navigating the home-buying process in her second language. Professionally, she has been an English teacher, translator, subtitler, event coordinator, voice-search transcriber, publication coordinator, academic coordinator, admissions counsellor, product marketer and now content marketer.

Catch her on LinkedIn and Twitter during the day, and on Instagram during every other waking moment. 

Rebecca Moy will also be participating in the panel discussion at our upcoming Content Mix networking on February 13 at VeraContenthere are all the event details.