Multimedia lifestyle expert Justine Santaniello shares her tips and top product suggestions—otherwise known as her ‘Just Haves’—regularly on The Wendy Williams Show, Good Day New York, CBS’s The Couch, Yahoo!, New York Live, FOX Business, PIX Morning News, BetterTV, and more. As the founder and creative director of JustHaves.com, Santaniello with her vast experience as segment producer, is fast becoming a go-to media and consumer resource for anything and everything related to style, beauty, gifting, entertaining, and travel.
You have been featured for your words of wisdom regarding lifestyle and trends; what platforms and experience assisted in your expert title? I had been working as a TV segment producer at a broadcast PR firm for a few years before working on-air. It was during this time I gained my expertise by getting a first hand look at the latest products on the market, working with the “it” talent in the industry, and producing content about all the latest trends and must have items. I eventually decided to take my knowledge and expertise in the field and bring it on TV, radio, print, and online as the expert instead of just the person behind the content. It has now been seven years that I have continued to work in the lifestyle category and have been lucky enough to have been featured on all of the major affiliates and some of the best morning shows across the country.
Aside from your expertise, you are a branding machine. Would you say it’s easier to brand yourself today or tougher? Are there specific strategies you can suggest for those who are “working it,” yet on a stand-still and see no results? The media industry is a highly competitive workplace. In the last seven plus years I have noticed that it seems to be more competitive than ever, which in turn, makes it more difficult to make yourself stick out. There are so many different TV shows, web series, original content on platforms like Yahoo and Amazon, YouTube stars, and bloggers; it can be difficult to come up with an original concept for yourself. I always suggest doing your research before you go ahead with your brand. Find out who is similar to you, what do they offer, what makes you unique. You have to be sure you are bringing something to the table that nobody else is. Once you do, my biggest piece of advice is to keep at it. As simple as that may sound, this is a business of persistence and I do believe hard work, networking, and a strong social media presence will pay off.
DIY Don’ts: That was a well-recognized segment you contributed toward and your information was awe-awakening. Was there a specific DIY beauty regimen you ventured to experiment that turned into a nightmare? There are so many beauty myths out there and old wives tales that your mother or grandmother has probably sold you on. The problem is, not all of them turn out to be true. You have probably heard that you can put toothpaste on breakout areas right? Well it may work for some people but it did not work for me. Most of the time this will not fix the problem area; instead, it can actually irritate the skin and dry it out, as most toothpastes contain menthol. Let’s just say I was not thrilled with my results and will now keep my toothpaste for teeth purposes, only.
For more of the interview with Justine Santaniello, order your copy of the April/May issue here.
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