Julia Eckhardt

January 21, 2019

Julia is a marketing and digital expert with 15 years of in-depth experience in creative environments. Over that time she has had the opportunity to contribute to a variety of high level, award-winning projects as a strategist, manager, and creative consultant. At the beginning of 2018, she moved from Berlin to Los Angeles where she works as a Marketing and Brand Consultant, advising various companies on brand strategy, marketing activation, and digital transformation. 

How did you get into brand consulting?

First of all, I have a background in advertising & marketing with more than 15 years of experience - that helps. But, I actually never thought I would go into freelancing. I come from a small town and grew up in a traditional German family structure - my father was a teacher, and my mum worked part-time. So, I thought,  "having job security and not worrying about what comes next" is kind of important to me. But, after I lost my dream job due to bankruptcy, I decided to change my lifestyle. First step: not to go back into a full-time employment until I find an opportunity that I am very passionate about. Looking back, I actually don’t need job security to be happy, and, secondly, it took me almost three years to find my next dream job.

How did you prepare for your move to LA?

I had been to LA quite a lot but always in vacation mode or on a short-term work trip. So, I took the time for an extensive stay and tried to explore the city a little bit more with the intension of moving here – having a daily routine, looking at living expenses, exploring the job market. After I felt I had saved enough to invest money in a visa, I looked for a kick-ass lawyer and went for it. Along the way, I tried to save as much money as I could, visited a lot to keep and extend my network, and tried not to lose sight of my dream but also not to think too much about it. This wasn’t always easy, as it took around 1.5 years from the moment I decided that I wanted to explore the option until the actual move.

What do you like or hate the most about Los Angeles?

This is a bit cliché, but of course it's the light, the blue sky and the palm trees. It just makes me happy or happier. If I'm in a bad mood, I just go hiking in Griffith Park in the early AM or around sunset. Away from noise and traffic, I look over the city with its beautiful colors and just feel so grateful and good again. Also, to have all these great outdoor opportunities in a radius of 2.5 hours – i.e. the mountains and snow in Big Bear, the magical desert in Joshua Tree, the sea (up the coast, down the coast - all beautiful), the calming forest of Los Angeles, Ojai - oh there is so, so much… 
Hate is too strong, but what I miss is certainly the easy access to cool and cultural events with a lot of likeminded people in Berlin, good sourdough - I rephrase - fantastic sourdough bread, Monsieur Vuong and his delicious and cheap Vietnamese dishes across the street from my apartment, sitting on the street for hours talking and having a glass of wine. All not so easy to find here…

What career and life advice do you give to young creative talents who want to make the move to Los Angeles?

In my mind, everybody has to find his or her own path. It is different for everyone, and there is not one way to be happy and successful in Los Angeles. But, what I experienced and what all people have in common who are successful (in their own terms) was that we did whatever was needed and stepped out of our comfort zone. You must believe in your talent and skills but, moreover, be ready to keep your eyes on the horizon and work towards it, even if it means washing cars, waiting, or harvesting weed to pay the rent.

What are you up to now?

Just found my new dream job that combines two things I love: fitness and marketing. In 2019, you will find me creating amazing brand experiences for a new luxury fitness chain. And, I am furniture shopping because I just got my new apartment. I moved with 3 suitcases, so I can create my LA home in "California-chic!"

My first year in LA was all about settling in, finding a job, and making it work. As I am in a much more steady and comfortable situation, I promised myself to do much more weekend trips exploring California, spending more time in nature and trying out new outdoor activities.

 

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