Callum McGeoch, Condé Nast’s Vice President of Sponsored Editorial & Creative Strategy, drops into the Condé Nast College for an in conversation with BA (Hons) Fashion Communication & Industry Practice student, Charlotte Coates as part of induction week to welcome our new students. Here, Charlotte reflects on the experience of interviewing Callum…
On Tuesday, 26th September we had the first Vogue Education Presents talk of the sparkling new term. New students starting at Condé Nast College gathered to hear from Callum McGeoch, Vice President of Sponsored Editorial and Creative Strategy, Video, EU, APAC, LATAM at Condé Nast.
From Marine Biology to Fashion Magazines
Callum McGeoch didn’t start on a traditional media career path, whilst studying Marine Biology at university he began writing. A couple of years down the line, he joined legendary Dazed & Confused (now Dazed) set up by Jefferson Hack and Rankin. Over his eight-year tenure at Dazed, he rose through the ranks from Editorial Assistant to Editor. During a time when many iconic style and music titles were closing, Callum McGeoch steered the team away from the epidemic of celebrity culture, resulting in a doubling of the title’s circulation.
A Pioneering Career
His next step was at the helm of the men’s luxury fashion magazine ‘Another Man’, overseeing the title’s first four issues. Callum then became a creative communications advisor to Sir Paul McCartney and wrote for Rolling Stone, NME, Esquire, The Times, and The Independent.
Callum McGeoch built the creative and social enterprise Livity, a youth engagement agency. Over his 11 years there, from Creative Director to Digital Publishing Director, Livity became a cornerstone of youth culture, creating social content and outstanding social platform knowledge.
His penultimate role before going to Condé Nast was as Editorial and Strategy Director for Adjust Your Set, leading a team that delivered brand publishing, content strategy, and organic and paid social for a multitude of clients, including the BBC, Bombay Sapphire, Dettol, and Bicester Village.
Today, Callum is responsible for brand-partnered video across Europe and Asia, pioneering brand-partnered original entertainment series, documentaries, masterclasses, and podcasts for brands across the Condé Nast empire, including Vogue, GQ, Vanity Fair, AD, Glamour, and more.
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Insights into the Industry: Shaping the Fashion Media Landscape
Sitting down with Callum, one of the first things he asked the Condé Nast College students was, “What’s the difference between content and advertising?” To varying responses, he answered, “Whether you want to watch it or not.” This poignant question prepared the students for a whistle-stop tour of Callum’s career journey, and advice for entering the industry.
Highlights included McGeoch sharing that for a successful career in the industry today, you require not only passion but also a broad skillset. This includes technical knowledge of photography, videography, or podcasts. He also shared industry knowledge surrounding his role in the Louboutin, Rossy de Palma, and Vogue collaboration, which resulted in several pieces of content, including a ‘What’s in the bag’ video, currently at over 127K views.
“What’s the difference between content and advertising?”
We discussed Callum’s approach to working with a variety of people and teams and his belief that effective content collaborations replace the need for advertising.
The talk closed with a Q&A session and the opportunity for students to ask the guest questions. One student asked him for his opinion on current marketing methods used by the music industry. Another asked about how to come up with original ideas that further the industry’s progress.
Key takeaways from the Callum McGeoch Industry Talk
- That youth is powerful, and you should remind employers of this during interviews.
- It is highly advantageous to be multi-skilled in this industry.
- It is good to be curious and become a specialist in a niche interest or something you feel passionately about.
By Charlotte Coates, BA (Hons) Fashion Communication & Industry Practice student