In conversation with

Juliana Ogechi

Junior Creative at Sonder & Tell

Juliana Ogechi

Introduction

Introduction

Sonder & Tell has doubled in size since the beginning of the year. Add to that a new office space (complete with a book shelf that doubles up as a secret door) as well as a few new hires coming soon.

Jules joined S&T in June as a Junior Creative, along with Copywriter Rae. An expert researcher, Jules helps us get projects off the ground, and has also begun to take over our social channels and newsletter, The Word. Plus there’s an upcoming audio project – keep your ears to the ground.

Her side hustle is the podcast she hosts, No Shame In My Name, which explores and celebrates the etymology behind different names. “For the longest time, I’ve been fascinated by the value of names and the stories that they tell. I wanted to create a platform where others could celebrate their names, without shame or embarrassment.”

We asked Jules about the lessons she’s learning about writing, why she’s drawn to audio storytelling and what she’s excited to do during her time at S&T.

Question and Answer

You spent some time working for The Midnight Club on accounts like Adidas – what did you learn whilst you were there?

One of my main takeaways from working at The Midnight Club was that a strong idea is made up of good research, good strategy, good insights and a good team.

Now that you’ve been at S&T for a few months – what are you learning about writing?

I’m privileged to be surrounded by a team of incredible writers at S&T. So far I’m learning that writing, like running, is a discipline, a muscle that needs to be exercised. So even during the challenging moments when I feel uninspired or even frozen with fear, there’s no room for excuses. I have no choice but to write.

Who would be a dream brand to work with?

For me, a dream brand to work with would be Spotify. I enjoy how they play with their audience through their words. Their ‘Listen Like You Used To’ campaign will forever be one of my favourites.

You’ve got your own podcast – No Shame In My Name – where did the idea of that come from and what have you learned whilst doing it?

For the longest time, I’ve been fascinated by the value of names and the stories that they tell. My Dad would often share the story and intention behind my middle name; Ogechi, which means ‘God’s time’ in the Igbo language. There was a time when friends, family or coworkers would share stories about their names being butchered, or mispronounced, and so I wanted to create a platform where others could celebrate their names, without shame or embarrassment. Since starting the podcast, I’ve discovered some incredible names, cultures and languages, and met some super-cool people too.

“There was a time when friends, family or coworkers would share stories about their names being butchered, or mispronounced, and so I wanted to create a platform where others could celebrate their names, without shame or embarrassment.”

Why have you felt drawn to storytelling through audio?

I grew up in a house where the radio was always on (Radio Four to be precise) and so it feels almost natural that I’ve ended up being drawn to audio stories. I also love music, so I’m always exploring new sounds. In general, I think storytelling through audio is akin to the way humans have always told stories – through the spoken word. I think that’s why I find podcasts so fascinating. It’s like an oral form of storytelling, in digital form.

Who are some of your favourite storytellers and why?

I can’t list them all, but to name a few: Maya Angelou, Theresa Lola, Issa Rae, Chinua Achebe, AA Gill, David Attenborough (his voice), Louis Theroux. I enjoy storytellers who have the ability to say something simple, whilst making you laugh, cry, stand in awe, or all of the above. I’m also a sucker for dry humour.

What are you most looking forward to doing at S&T?

I’m honestly looking forward to growing as a writer at S&T. Being introduced to words and stories that I’ve never heard of before. But also learning more about how to apply storytelling to cool brands.

Juliana's Storylist

Books

  1. Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi
  2. And Still I Rise by Maya Angelou
  3. he Education of a British-Protected Child by Chinua Achebe
  4. A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khalid Hosseini
  5. Long Walk To Freedom by Nelson Mandela
  6. The Thing Around Your Neck by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
  7. Atomic Habits by James Clear
  8. The Unpublished by David Ogilvy

Magazines

  1. The Sunday Times Magazine
  2. Style Magazine

Newsletters

  1. The Knowledge by David Elikwu
  2. 3-2-1 Thursday by James Clear

Podcasts

  1. The Motion Podcast by Fé Oj
  2. Dem Times by Our Day Media
  3. The Big Picture Podcast by Rita Balogun
  4. TTYA Talks by The Podcast
  5. It’s A Continent
  6. Bible Project Podcast
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