Successful Berklee Alumni #109: Chantale Sterling

Chantale Sterling

Listen to the interview (approx. 1 hr, 20 min) or download it.


Graduated in 2013 with a major in Professional Music.  Principal instrument:  voice.


Position:  “Partnerships Associate” (Online Advertising)  at Initiative, a large marketing agency that’s part of the IPG Group.   One of about 25 people doing this sort of role, Chantale oversees roughly $75,000,000 per year of digital advertising spending on behalf of various clients, mostly in the pharmaceutical industry.  Chantale formulates campaigns, estimates costs and effectiveness, and negotiates payment rates with online providers.


Overview:  After graduation, Chantale spent the summer working food-service jobs, then moved to New York City, unsure what she wanted to do–wanting to work in media/communications but not necessarily in music.  She applied to jobs and got an unpaid internship at a fashion company and a paying job at a fashion boutique to pay the bills.  She then got a succession of contract-jobs, with progressively more responsibility through a staffing agency:  working on CRM databases for a luxury goods company, as an admin. assistant for several hedge funds, and a marketing job at Macys, a billing coordinator with HUGE, an online marketing agency, then finally her current job in October 2016, which started out as another contract job but she was taken on permanently after just over 6 months.


You can see Chantale’s LinkedIn profile here.


Choice Quotes:  “Digital buying is advertising through different networks, and targeting the adversiting to reach your ideal customers.”

“I enjoy the strategic part of online advertising the most. I’d interact with applications like Instagram and the online news and see types of brand messaging for things I liked–I didn’t know a digital buyer and strategist were crafting the experience for me based on my online profile. I love partnering with vendors & publishers and learning about the cool things technology is letting brands do and take advantage of.”

“Learning and education, and discipline are what’s going to get you where you need to go. Read an article each day, interact with someone in your network each week–whatever that goal, set it and fulfill it. Never think that because something isn’t in music that it may not be worth learning about. It might open you to an industry you didn’t know existed such as how I discovered digital advertising.”

“Berklee taught me to move quickly along the learning curve–recognize what I don’t know, and figure out what tools do I need and how I get these tools.  This helps me in my career, which is all about understanding fundamentals and asking the necessary questions to figure out budget allocation, etc. ”

“It’s good to have a career in the digital space.  Digital is growing and it’s not going to stop growing.”



See the full index of successful Berklee alumni.