By Jeff Fish
Cassidy Quinn Brettler describes herself as the poster child for the idea that "social media can actually help your life." Such PSAs obviously don't actually exist, but given that Brettler's use of social media platforms has led her to a full-time job, a trip to the Super Bowl, and a spot on an online reality show, among many other opportunities, she'd be a shoo-in if they did.
"I try to do everything in the social media world," said Brettler, who graduated from Emerson last year with a degree in acting and broadcast journalism. "I think I signed up for Twitter in 2007, the year I graduated from high school, [and I've had] Facebook since my sophomore or junior year of high school."
But Brettler's interest in social media heightened when she came to Emerson, especially after taking a class in which she was required to maintain a blog. Instead of writing her posts, she decided to create a video blog, which she still updates regularly.
"It seemed like one way to promote those videos was through Twitter and social media," she said. "The more I did it, the more I got addicted to it."
It was Brettler's heavy use of Twitter that earned her a job as Boloco's "social media diva." She'd tweeted at Boloco "like a million times," Brettler said, before meeting CEO John Pepper in person at a social media class. When her current position opened up, Brettler had already graduated and moved home to Seattle, so she had a Skype interview with Pepper, got the job, and headed back to Boston last September.
"I didn't think I'd ever come back to Boston," said Brettler, who stressed that she is not a diva, despite her job title. Her predecessor was known as the "social media maven," but "one day at work, [Pepper] posted on the internal Boloco Facebook page, 'Check out our social media diva blogging,'" and the title stuck.
Brettler's love of social media and being on camera also landed her a free trip to Super Bowl XLVI when she entered a Facebook contest through Motorola and the Ochocinco News Network, made a 30-second video, and won.
In addition to live-blogging the big game itself, Brettler spent the whole week beforehand in Indianapolis, video blogging about the events she attended, including Media Day, where she had the chance to speak with Tom Brady. Once she got his attention, Brettler asked the quarterback what he's done with his three Super Bowl rings.
"He complimented my earrings," said Brettler, explaining that Brady told her he doesn't wear his rings because they're gawdy, "more than your pretty little earrings."
Now, Brettler is a contestant on season two of a web reality show called The Rookie Bartender. The first season followed her friend Kayla Harrity as she learned to become a bartender, but this season, the show is a competition between four trainees and four trainers doing a series of different challenges. The winner will receive $1,000 and a bartending job.
While Brettler is happy with her current job at Boloco, she said that if she wins, she might bartend once a week for some extra cash.
On top of everything else, Brettler regularly updates her YouTube account with all sorts of videos, from reports from the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver to song parodies like "Vlogging Around the Christmas Tree."
"I never thought I could get paid for social media," said Brettler. Not only has she gotten paid, Brettler's used social media and her bubbly personality to get much more exposure than most people her age.
Photos of Cassidy by Chelsea Dugan
About Jeff -- I'm a senior at Suffolk University, majoring in journalism and political science. I'm the editor-in-chief of my college newspaper, The Suffolk Journal, and I did a six-month co-op at The Boston Globe. I love politics, reading, movies, TV, and anything pop culture. My mind is a font of useless knowledge.
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