BISMARCK, N.D. (KXNET)— “I used to say I’m a social strategist… self-explanatory. I realized I gotta stop saying that,” said North Dakota Tourism & Marketing Social Strategist Alicia Jolliffe.
Jolliffe has been on the job for six years, and says making the most out of the social media world isn’t as self-explanatory as she initially thought. “It’s because you have to align a lot of different objectives to platforms and organizations that you don’t work for but you kind of work for them,” she stated.
But spending time responding to comments, strategizing, and creating engaging content for North Dakota Tourism wasn’t her first goal in life. The Minnesota native came to the University of Mary in Bismarck to play volleyball and become a veterinarian.
“I learned pretty quick my brain doesn’t work that way,” said Jolliffe. “So then I went to psychology, which wasn’t that much different. My brain still didn’t work that way. And then I landed in a sports communication class, which was actually taught by an old KX guy: Mike Chaussee.”
Jolliffe said that class inspired her to pursue a journalism career.
Not too long after that, Jolliffe would report and anchor KX’s weekend news, working at the station for about three years before ending her time in 2017. She would then have a brief stint working at the University of Mary before getting hired at North Dakota Tourism, first as a marketing assistant and then as a social strategist.
“What I try to do is that I manage multiple accounts,” explained Jolliffe, “but most of what I focus on is North Dakota Tourism’s account, where we try to be that single source of information for things to do across North Dakota.”
Although Jolliffe loves capturing those legendary North Dakota moments, she also places a major focus on another aspect of her life: being a mother. Caring for her daughter often requires Jolliffe to put down the phone.
“I think that my greatest joy is just seeing her discover something new,” she says. “How she loves North Dakota’s windy days, because, for some reason, she just like being pushed around by it or going out on the ice and running and sliding a little bit.”
Jolliffe said it’s taken time to learn how to separate work from home life. “I’m living in the state I promote,” she stated, “So, really, every time I’m out doing something fun, this could be a moment to share with others.”
Although her tourism job continues to evolve, for Joliffe, it’s not hard to tell how to measure success. “You can tell your audience something that they didn’t know about or you see celebration happening on your accounts,” she states. “Those are the days that I can walk away from stating ‘we did good work today.” A feeling worthy of pressing the ‘Like’ button.
Jolliffe said she’s so grateful to be able to work with such brilliant colleagues, all of which have teamed up to show all North Dakota has to offer. She’s also energized by just how passionate North Dakotans are about where they call home.