Advertising and Marketing: Thinking Outside the Box

By Rachel Carver 

When people find out that I work in the marketing and PR profession, they usually respond with “amazing!” or “I admire you,” or they just ask, “How is this possible?” I have been blind all of my life, and I really do not consider myself to be that special. In fact, most of the time, I try to avoid the spotlight, though that does not always happen for a company spokesperson.

We live in a world full of technology, which makes it possible for me to do my job. I often joke about hearing voices in my head, but it is a true statement. My computer talks, my iPhone talks, and I can even send a fax on my own now with our new office copier. Any Apple product has VoiceOver technology on it, which is something not widely known to the public. So, I can say that my life is in my phone, just like everyone else.

Now, all of this being the case, I do not have super powers. I do not design marketing collateral or ads, though I still have to know ad sizes and how much material can go on a brochure without making it look too cluttered. I have the constant copy vs. image debate with myself even though I can’t see the page in front of me on a regular basis. I do not pick out photos, and you will not find me designing a new logo anytime soon.

I often find myself having visual conversations with co-workers about textboxes, whether a photo is horizontal or vertical, and so on. It has taken me awhile to develop an understanding of things I cannot see, and I knew I had to do this if I wanted to fulfill the duties of a college newspaper section editor or put out a company newsletter. I have always learned by doing, and I consider myself a visual learner, which makes people raise their eyebrows when I tell them this.

My message to you is simple. If you have a blind person interested in a marketing, advertising, or public relations position, don’t panic. If you think they have the skills but are unsure how they will do the job, work with them to figure out their skills and abilities and how they will do a good job for you. I am a wife, mom, and have chaotic mornings during my scramble out the door just like everyone else. I obviously do not drive myself to work, but that is pretty easy to overcome most of the time. Whether it is something at home or at work, I will find a way to get the job done. The blind and visually impaired population has a 70 percent unemployment rate, and we all need to work together to lower this number in our industry and beyond.


Rachel Carver
Public Relations Associate
Outlook Nebraska, Inc.
4125 S. 72nd Street
Omaha, NE  68127

(P) 402.614.3331 x221
(F) 402.933.1616



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