Kari Johnson is a member of the Rosetta Stone team based in Arlington, Virginia. She’s enjoying getting to know the other employees—not just in Arlington, but in our other locations too. Kari will be introducing her colleagues to you in this and future RVoice posts.
Michael Benjamin knows his way around a banner ad.
Before working as an online marketing executive for Rosetta Stone, Michael spent his tenure at an online marketing agency working with a diverse client list. Reflecting on the difference between the two jobs, he admits that the reaction he gets from friends is different now. “Can you get me a discount?” he mimics, acknowledging the buzz around Rosetta Stone products in the United Kingdom. “Everyone wants to learn.”
Michael lives in London, and he does everything at a fast pace. He started working at the UK office in April 2011. When his boss left the organization later that year, he took on some of her responsibilities. He began reporting directly to the Shirley Marguerite, marketing manager for the UK and Europe.
“I don’t really communicate with the customer,” Michael says, talking rapidly. “My job is driving revenue, getting people to the site, making sure they enjoy the site, and customer acquisition.” He mostly works on paid search, email marketing, reporting, content management systems, and project management. And, although he stays behind the scenes, he’s ambitious.
When I meet with him in the Arlington offices of Rosetta Stone, he explains that this is his first trip to the United States. “This is the first time I’ve been on an eight hour flight,” he says, grinning. “I got to see New York…got to see Washington.” Clearly, he was making the most of his work-related travel with Rosetta Stone. Also, he was quick to comment on the view of Georgetown from the Arlington office building. Compared to the view from his London office, he prefers the stretch of the Potomac River and the waterfront businesses beyond.
Back in London, both Michael and his brother Joe are learning Spanish (Spain), although they’ve reached different points in the program. Michael hesitantly admits, “He’s ahead of me because he has more time,” revealing a bit of his competitive side.
Commenting on the product, Michael calls it addictive, adding, “When the green check is ticked off, you know you’re on your way to finishing your block.” As a success-oriented person, Michael enjoys the feeling of accomplishment Rosetta Stone gives him. He also notes that learning new languages can open up business opportunities.
Speaking about another coworker, one who speaks five languages, he says, “She does inspire me to want to learn more.” The French language is next on his list. But first, Michael will have to catch up with his brother in the Spanish program. I tell him that I think he can do it, but only if he stops working late into the night in the London office.
“I’ll try it,” he says. “Sounds fun.”