Lianna Tsakonas and Freda Pedrique-Valdes

For the last Media Management Association meeting of the fall semester, Freda Pedrique-Valdes, senior account manager at Telemundo 51-NBCUniversal (WSCV and WTVJ), shared her insights about the changing practices in television sales. But while students constantly seek new educational and professional opportunities to strengthen their resumes, Pedrique-Valdes admitted having no resume. She has been working for the same renowned Telemundo-NBC company for over twenty-eight years.

How did Pedrique-Valdes end up in her long-standing position? During her last year as a graphic design student at International Fine Arts College in Miami, Pedrique-Valdes was approached by one of her friend’s parents to become a sales assistant. She was excited by the opportunity to make money and took the job. She stayed on at Telemundo 51-NBCUniversal and is now a senior account manager.

Pedrique-Valdes credited this longevity to the increasingly diverse aspects of her job.

"I love that I meet different people in the industry," said Pedrique-Valdes.

She is responsible for executing traditional and digital marketing plans, program creation, and media planning across all stations, markets, and digital platforms. She is also responsible for producing and executing events. According to her, the key to her success has been to treat her occupation like her own personal business by thoughtfully building relationships with clients in order to successfully persuade them to buy advertisements.

Interestingly, she explained that, at one point, Hispanic television was expected to vanish, even though it is now overpowering the television industry and the density of viewers and engagement is expected to increase. The problem, however, is that although the numbers show strength in this particular market, less amount of money is allocated to Hispanic channels than to general (non-Hispanic) channels. To successfully overcome this challenge, she noted, it is important to be persistent.

Finally, Pedrique-Valdes advised students "to change with change" and be adaptable to different clients from different generations. For those interested in media sales, she recommended listening to customers before responding to them, doing the necessary homework to discover their needs, and knowing them personally.