Our Content Club continues with Stephanie Gutierrez of Foster ATX. They put together intimate concerts and pop-up dinners with local artists and chefs in unique spaces around Austin. Read on to find out how they use PLANOLY to keep up with their Instagram content, portray a visual story, and enhance their overall strategy!
Please introduce yourself!
It was after a five-week backpacking trip across Europe when the idea of Foster ATX sparked. My two partners, Sara Barge and Shelby Goodwin, and I graduated from The University of Georgia with the hopes of doing something bigger. To live a life full of passion and purpose. We returned home from our time abroad and felt uninspired by where we were going and what we were doing. On a whim, we booked a trip out to Austin. It dawned on us that we could bridge what we loved so much about our time in Europe — the culture, the energy, the community— with the overflowing talent in this town. We dropped everything and moved a few months later. In May of 2016, our website officially launched and we held our very first gathering.
At the heart of it, we curate intimate pop-up dinners and concerts in unique spaces around town — all with the mission to bring our community together in a meaningful and authentic way. It's been a little over a year and a half since Foster came to life. Since then, we have curated 32 gatherings. We have collaborated with some of the most talented chefs and musicians, brought magic back to house shows, and shared rich stories around the dinner table. And it's just the beginning.
In your own words, how would you characterize social media and what do you think is the most exciting element?
Social media gives us a canvas to showcase our story. It's a platform to reveal the humans behind the brand. A two-way street of sharing inspiration, hopes, challenges, and experiences. It's an album of some of our most cherished moments. But beyond that, it's an intentional tool for connection. To speak with others, a place to have genuine one-on-one interactions. It also provides us with a means of connecting with people that we may have never been able to without. This past fall, we heard BonnieKate and Max Zoghbi's powerful story on Sounds Good with Branden Harvey. We simply couldn't shake how their words struck a chord with us. So, we reached out. Next thing you know, they're parking their airstream in our backyard, becoming the backdrop for one of the most special Foster gatherings to date. It's powerful.
PLANOLY is all about empowering users to tell their story visually. How do you strike a balance between visual content and copywriting to create a holistic picture of your brand's lifestyle on social media?
The photo is the first thing you see. If it's captivating enough, it makes you pause — stop scrolling and read. That's when the words kick in. That's when you gain an appreciation for what's happening on the other side of the camera. Our hope is to go beyond showcasing striking photographs. Our hope is to be intentional in what we share. To inspire and reveal the spark behind each moment — the musicians who are pouring their hearts out, the chefs who are taking big leaps, the people who show up. It's the whole story.
What does having a "plan" mean to you and your work; and how do you plan to have your social content translate into offline action/initiatives?
Having a plan is important. It's a launch pad to make sure you're heading in the right direction. It guides you to help you work towards your dream, towards the end goal. But with that, it's important to be open. Things go wrong, unexpected things arise, and new opportunities present themselves from around the corner. If you're not willing to pivot, if you're too narrowly focused, you'll miss out on something special. Have a road map, but be open to detours. They often lead you to exactly where you need to be. Foster is built upon the offline interaction. The face-to-face moments, engaging deeply with new friends and old. The stories we share across social media is a reflection of each gathering. We hope each person that touches Foster walks away feeling something. In a way that doesn't end once the night is over. Something that lingers in your heart, inspiring you to chase after a passion of your own. Our hope is that the content sparks this within someone — opens them up to say, "why not?"
How has PLANOLY helped to enhance your overall strategy and what is your favorite feature/tool that has changed the way you craft your content?
PLANOLY has been crucial in planning out our social content. It's the best platform to get a holistic view of the story —unraveled through multiple posts that make up the collective whole. It's also especially helpful for a team of three to come together and cohesively share our brand voice. We've utilized PLANOLY as a social content calendar. Having everything in one place has been especially useful. Our favorite feature has been the analytics. We always enjoy experimenting with different types of content, and it's helpful to gain a better understanding of what type of content resonates most.