Women To Watch: Shay Abrams

Entrepreneurship: The Future of The Industry

By Charese Fruge’ @MCMediaonline

Shay Abrams is the owner of JustShayMedia Creative Agency, a digital media agency specializing in social media management, content creation, and photography. She oversees the strategic direction of the agency, manages client relationships, leads creative projects, and ensures the delivery of high-quality services to her clients.

In addition to running JustShayMedia Creative Agency, Abrams is also a content producer, producing podcasts and digital short form content, allowing her to explore creative interests beyond her primary business. Simply put, she is an entrepreneur, taking advantage of the new creative landscape the business not only allows these days, but almost demands, as the bigger radio companies continue to cut positions and force young talent to go out and find a way to make a living on their own. Add to that the fact that you have to able to wear many hats in the industry and be in the sales business, Gen Zers are figuring out that working for themselves is the way to go moving forward.

“My career journey began in 2017 during my junior year at UAB in Birmingham, Alabama,” says Abrams. “After teaching myself photography, following a gift from my grandmother, I ventured into marketing through an internship with my university’s campus dining program. This experience led to my first full-time job after college, and eventually, the founding of JustShayMedia Creative Agency in Atlanta. Since then, I’ve provided creative strategy and social media management to over 40 businesses and served 300+photography clients.”

“Some of my biggest career accomplishments include producing a comedy tour for my client, comedian J. Smiles. Producing and developing all creative assets for her 5-city 2023 tour was a significant milestone for me, showcasing my ability to manage large-scale projects and deliver exceptional results for my clients.”

“I believe in sharing knowledge and opportunities with my community without gatekeeping. Whether it’s offering advice, resources, or mentorship, I strive to support fellow entrepreneurs, creatives, and Black women in achieving their goals and realizing their potential”

“My best advice for young women in entrepreneurship is to ‘persevere.’ Despite facing hardships like utility shutoffs and financial struggles, I stayed motivated by focusing on my long-term goals and pushing myself to keep moving forward. Self-motivation and resilience are key to navigating the challenges of entrepreneurship and building a sustainable business.”

While Abrams has been very successful early in her career, she doesn’t pretend it’s a cake walk. Confidence is something that is learned over time. “One of my biggest challenges is overcoming my tendency to overthink,” she says. “I’m actively managing this by practicing mindfulness techniques and seeking support from mentors and peers.”

“To bridge the generation gap and engage younger audiences and entrepreneurs like me, we must break cycles of gatekeeping and actively mentor and uplift emerging talent. By fostering an inclusive environment and providing opportunities for growth and collaboration, we can empower younger generations to contribute meaningfully to our industries.”

“And while strides have been made in promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) in the media industry, there’s still much ground to cover,” says Abrams. “As a proud Black woman navigating these spaces, I’ve witnessed firsthand the glaring gaps in representation and opportunity. However, I remain hopeful, fueled by the collective efforts of trailblazers and change-makers alike. The needle is moving, albeit slowly, but our work is far from done. It’s up to each of us to champion diversity, demand equity, and dismantle systemic barriers, ensuring that every voice is heard, every story is told, and every dream is within reach.”

A big change and/or addition to the industry is the use of AI. “I embrace AI tools in my work, utilizing them for tasks like generating content ideas and creating short-form videos,” Abrams explains. “While AI offers exciting possibilities for efficiency and innovation, I believe human creativity and touch will always be essential in media and marketing. It’s about leveraging technology to enhance rather than replace human ingenuity, ensuring a balance between automation and human-driven solutions.”

Abrams says her creative ideas are what often keep her up at night. “I’m constantly inspired and driven by the potential to turn those ideas into reality, leading me to jot them down and strategize further in the middle of the night. The excitement of creating something new motivates me to push the boundaries of my creativity and innovation on the spot.”

“Balancing work and personal life are an ongoing journey for me,” says Abrams. “I prioritize self-care by setting boundaries, such as implementing a ‘Do Not Disturb’ policy and reserving weekends for personal time. Additionally, I indulge in small treats or activities at least twice a week to reward myself for my hard work and maintain a sense of balance and fulfillment.”

“As far as for what’s ahead for me, I am looking forward to taking my clients brands to the next level this year. My socials are @justshaysworld and @justshaymedia! Follow me to watch our progress.”