There are so many fascinating Kates out there. And every week, Kate-book.com is resolving to introduce you to a new one. This week, I would like you to meet Kate Trgovac of Vancouver, British Columbia. Yes, you heard that right, folks—our first Canadian! Without further ado, 13 questions with Kate.
You changed your name to Kate. What about the name spoke to you? Why did you feel like you were meant to be a Kate?
Starting in high school, through college and into my professional life, my friends called me either by my last name or by my initials “KT.” (My birth name was “Karin.”) I really liked the hard sound of KT but not the two syllable-ness of it. So I thought about changing my name to Kate. But I wanted to make sure it suited me first. So I booked a two-week vacation to the wilds of Newfoundland but registered as “Kate” and told everyone there my name was Kate. And at the end of two weeks, I knew it was supposed to be my name. So when I got home, I started the paperwork and legally changed it.
What’s your favorite thing about your name?
That I chose it.
You are a digital marketer and social media strategist. What, exactly, does that mean?
My company’s (LintBucket Media) unofficial tag line is “we help companies not be jerks online.” We’re there to support businesses who want to use digital and social channels to communicate with their customers. We help them negotiate the technology, but more importantly, understand the ever-changing expectations and etiquette of online spaces.
What’s the #1 piece of advice you find yourself giving to brands, and by extension people, looking to build their presence online?
Online communication is a marathon not a sprint. You have to be in it for the long haul. Online communication is radically transforming businesses and brands but it requires time. That’s the biggest shock for brands—the time investment required to build and maintain a credible presence online.
How did you get interested in online marketing and branding?
I have a funny meandering career path. My original career was going to be United Nations Translator; my father told me to pick a major as he was driving me to college. I picked Russian because this was in the mid-eighties and the Cold War was still kind of a thing. I got a “D” in my first semester of Russian and so ended that half-baked idea.
I ended up graduating with a dual degree in Religion and Philosophy, but had also co-created (written and programmed) an educational computer game with a team of researchers. I had been responsible for the user-testing component of the process. That started me along a path to working with “users” (also known as “people”) on other computer interfaces (other software and ultimately websites) and advocating for their needs.
These experiences, coupled with my background in Anthropology and Ethnography, led me along a path to marketing. Some people think marketing is all about tricking people into buying something. I think the very best kind of marketing works with people to understand and guide them to what they need. Sometimes they need a good dish soap and sometimes they just need a good laugh. As a marketer, if I can give them both, that’s a huge win/win.
That just because I work a lot with technology, I can’t fix your computer.
In an ideal world, where making a living weren’t an issue, what would you be doing?
I would be a miniature modeller for big epic movies like “Lord of the Rings.”
What’s a band, television show, book, or movie that you hope Kate-book readers will go watch, listen to, or read RIGHT NOW?
My absolute favourite movie of all time is “Babette’s Feast.” It is based on a short story written by Karen Blixen (pen name Isak Dinesen, who also wrote the autobiographical “Out of Africa”). It’s an amazing story of someone who loses everything yet still knows exactly who she is and is able to go on with an incredible generosity of spirit. Plus, a crazy awesome feast!
I just finished Ken Jennings’s (the Jeopardy champion) book “MapHead.” If you have any interest in geography, you will love this book.
What’s your favorite stop to make on a road trip?
Local ice cream shops—to see if they are making anything unusual. This is how I discovered a truly wonderful Guinness ice cream.
Who is your celebrity doppelganger?
I *wish* my celebrity doppelganger were Emma Thompson or Gillian Anderson. My *actual* celebrity doppelganger is the secret love child of Christina Hendricks and John Goodman (her stunning red hair and bodacious endowments and his, well, everything else).
What’s the first concert you ever went to?
John Denver. Don’t judge. I WANTED to go to Air Supply (’80s RULE!) but my parents thought it would be too wild.
If you were forced to get a tattoo right at this moment, what would you get?
Well, I actually HAVE a tattoo that I designed myself. It’s based on a rune that is the intertwining of my two initials “K” and “T.”
Your least favorite thing about your name?
That some people call me Katie. Katie is a diminutive to be used only by my wife.
Who is your favorite famous Kate?
It sounds like bandwagon jumping, but I love Kate Middleton.
Tell me about a Kate out there who you wish were a household name. Katherine, Katies, Kathleens, etc, of course count, too.
I think Kathleen Norris is an amazing author who more people should read.
Know a Kate, Caty, Katherine, or Catelynn who needs to be Kate of the Week? Awesome! Send me a tip at email@example.com. I will be in touch with them soon.