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Future of Music Summit: Interview with Steph O’Neill at Gymshark

Ahead of our Future of Music on 26th February we caught up with Steph O’Neill, Head of PR & Brand Partnerships at Gymshark. Steph will be a part of the Brand Collaborations & their Importance in the Journey of an Independent Artist panel.

How did you get into the industry, tell us about your journey?

I always had the dream of having my own clothing brand so studied fashion design at college. After getting knocked back from my chosen university, I ended up going travelling and realised that I was actually pretty bad at design and that I enjoyed the business side much more. I applied for uni whilst in China over some very strange Skype sessions and then managed to secure a place studying Management and Marketing.

Fast track a couple of years studying, interning loads, and securing a marketing role at a fashion brand, I then made the wrong decision and moved companies to a place where the culture wasn’t right for me. I didn’t want to make the same mistake again so thought I either retrain to become a PT as my hobby is weightlifting or I do what I know best but for a sportswear brand. Came across Gymshark, didn’t realise they were Birmingham based but took the interview for experience. Ended up falling in love with the people and their vision so I relocated and took a role as Womens Brand Manager.

7 months on I was tasked to set up the PR department with the benefit of having my own office in London. I had three months to prove it’s value. Safe to say nearly 4 years on, we did it.

What do you enjoy most about your job?

The networking and our events.

Relationships are vital in this industry, especially to ensure that values align.

What’s been a career highlight?

Creating a successful PR & Brand Partnerships department from scratch for one of the UKs fastest growing brands.

Plus changing their perception of what PR does and why it’s important to invest in the team.

What has kept you sane during this pandemic?

My team and my dog.

What was your top album of 2020?

Snoh Alegra – I know her album dropped in 2019 but I still listen to her nearly every day.

2020 would have to be After Hours, The Weekend.

Get tickets to the event here.


Written by Natasha Hurford