Sunday Morning Soliloquy - Musings of an Urbanite: More About Me

More About Me

Bookmark and Share

Leyla Arsan


About Me

This is my personal blog, a sarcastic commentary on the mundane events and daily occurrences of life in Chicago. Seemingly unimportant to most... yet, entertaining to all.

My FTC Disclosure
I sometimes talk about my clients, my clients' work, and at times I receive payment and / or products for free in return for a mention on Sunday Morning Soliloquy. However, the opinions I express on Sunday Morning Soliloquy are most certainly my own, I only write about things I feel strongly about. In addition to direct payment or products I may receive, there can also be links placed within this blog that redirect to advertisers who will compensate me for sales driven from my site.

I do my best to select advertisers that I use and like, advertisements that I believe in, or an advertisement that may offer a benefit to my readers. These ads are performance marketing ads or affiliate ads. If you would like to learn more about how I earn money in this fashion, you can read my post on Performance Marketing. You can also navigate to my many web properties and learn more about me there.

I am happily single, never married, no kids, no pets, one plant. I live in downtown Chicago. My parents are just a few blocks away and I see them several times a week. I enjoy my lifestyle tremendously and feel fortunate for what I have, what I've seen, where I've been and where I am going.

I am an avid traveler. I boarded my first trans-Atlantic flight when I was 9 months old and I visited over twenty countries on four continents in my lifetime. South America is on my bucket list. I am fortunate that I almost always travel business or first class due to the fact that my family has been in the travel business since 1991.

I am a self-proclaimed, b-rate foodie and a cocktail connoisseur. I caught the bug when I was in my early twenties. I worked part-time in restaurants to subsides the tiny income I earned in Advertising. Charlie Trotter's and Blackbird in Chicago are just a few of the many restaurants I worked for over the years; from there grew my appreciation and love for fine dining. It's a deal breaker if a man doesn't know how to hold his fork and knife properly.

I am a culture fanatic and a patron of the arts. I have my Masters in Arts Management and always thought I would work for a not-for-profit in the arts. The Magic Flute was my first opera. I was 23 and bought a ticket to the Opera House while visiting Prague. I've been hooked ever since.

I appreciate all sorts of design. Love architecture, graphic arts, couture clothing, shoes! Aesthetics are important to me. I believe how you present yourself to the world on the outside is a reflection of who you are on the inside. We live in a society that may call that superficial but I am of the belief that there is nothing superficial in wanting to put your best foot forward. I believe it...may not always practice it.

I started my career in advertising in the mid 90s working for DDB. I worked in the integrated marketing group and primarily worked on sponsorship, promotions and event marketing. I remember walking to work as a young professional feeling like I was on top of the world. Considering most of my former PR classmates worked in sales or publishing, I believed I was very lucky. But I wasn't lucky, I was persistent. I wanted to work in events as a student and I didn't stop until I made that happen.

I went on to work for other agencies in varying capacities but always worked on event marketing, promotions, contests, sweepstakes, etc. My favorite moments included: Running a contest where 20 kids won a trip to the MTV Awards (and I ran the event onsite), giving away a year of groceries to a dead man and working the Accenture MatchPlay (World Championship of Golf).

After about six years working on the agency side of the business, I moved to the client side and took a job with Accenture on their Global Events team. That was an accomplishment but probably not as exciting as one would think. We worked on some great events and sponsorship agreements but I missed the creativity of the agency world.

In 2004, I left Accenture and went to work for a large restaurant group in Chicago as their Marketing and Event Manager. I sold the event space for the restaurant, and managed local marketing initiatives, including community relations. I took my job seriously, I did it well and made great relationships - many of my former clients are my good friends today. After 4.5 years, I left the restaurant group and started to tinker around with the idea of starting my own business.

I had a "dream" to take my years of entertainment marketing experience and put it to use in a digital format. After two years of quietly working on - a content driven bachelorette party planning site - I was ready to take it more seriously. So many things unfolded as I learned more about online marketing and social media.

As started to take off, I also started a travel blog, soon it was time to formalize all this work and Lotus Marketing Services was born. I wrote content for travel clients and travel publications, and continued on with events to sustain revenue. I managed client events and created sponsorship properties, such as FIJI Water Urban Hunt.

Since 2012, I have been with Zeno Group in the digital engagement division. I work on client businesses that range from luxury, beauty, retail, start-ups and consumer packaged goods. I manage everything from influencer outreach, to social advertising, to large campaign focused initiatives - I lead strategy on some, and contribute on others.