Haley Steinberg, vice president of marketing communications at Authentic Brands Group, is described by colleagues as “an ardent and strategic marketing communications specialist,” who is “highly skilled in media and talent relations, integrated public relations strategy, corporate profile development, crisis management and leadership.”
At ABG, Steinberg established the company’s MarComm department in 2014 and continues to lead the team, which drives p.r. efforts across a portfolio of renown brands, which include Marilyn Monroe, Shaquille O’Neal, Sports Illustrated, Elvis Presley, Juicy Couture, Nautica, Vince Camuto, Aéropostale, Judith Leiber, Hervé Leger, Barneys New York, Volcom, Spyder and Prince, among others.
Prior to ABG, Steinberg held various roles in the fashion industry spanning p.r., brand management, wholesale, retail, product development and design. She has a BBA in marketing from LIM College in New York and an AA in Fashion Design from the Art Institute of New York City. In 2019, she received a LIM College Distinguished Alumni Award. Here, Steinberg shares her career path, challenges faced and the importance of being “adaptable.”
WWD: How did your coursework and your experience at LIM College help inform your career decisions?
Haley Steinberg: I came to LIM at a pivotal point in my career, and it completely changed my path. I was working at a design studio in the heart of the Garment District and thought design would be my lifelong career. I chose to pursue a degree in marketing at LIM because I craved a more well-rounded foundation. Yet through rigorous coursework and various internships, I found a new passion for communications and licensing. LIM taught me how to be strategic about learning and pursuing my career path — instilling ambition, purpose and the constant pursuit of excellence.
WWD: If you could go back in time and give career advice to your younger self, what would you say?
H.S.: Be present. Creatives are often also daydreamers, and while escapism may seem like the best way to deal with the shame of bombing a job interview or the politics of the corporate environment, facing things head-on only makes you stronger. Also, don’t panic, “It’s p.r., not the ER.” I can’t take credit for this phrase, but it’s one that consistently helps me regain perspective.
WWD: How would you describe your career path? What were some of the challenges you faced?
H.S.: I always knew I wanted to live in New York City and work in a creative field. One of the challenges I faced for many years was finding a job that allowed me to be creative and independent at the same time. It wasn’t until I landed my job at ABG six years ago that I found my niche.
I’ve always loved finding my own way of doing things, and working at a growing company where there is no playbook is as equally energizing as it is rewarding. We’re writing the rules as we go.
WWD: Have you had mentors at LIM or in the industry? If yes, how have they helped you?
H.S.: I’ve had many mentors at LIM, both before and after graduation. When interviewing, my career counselor taught me the winning combination of networking and preparation. My personal branding mentor taught me to persevere and find my passion. She said, “Just keep going. Your calling will find you, and you’ll fall into your niche.” My entrepreneurship professor taught me about leadership — recognizing talent in others and helping them discover it in themselves.
WWD: What advice would you give someone considering a career in the retail and fashion apparel market?
H.S.: Be adaptable. Through my role at ABG, I’ve watched a small licensing company skyrocket into a global branding, marketing and entertainment powerhouse. Along the way, I’ve gained hands-on experience in countless industries, from fashion and retail to licensing and private equity, to media and live events. It’s most important to take something with you from every experience and apply those learnings to your next big project or a new job.
You never know how the skills you pick up along the way will help you in your next endeavor. Typically, those who are most successful are first responders and early adopters.