Lena, a Work-At-Home-Mom (WAHM) of two feisty little boys, is a writer, social media enthusiast and authentic shopaholic. In fact, if it’s on sale – she’s already bought it.
Before starting a family, Lena worked in a professional capacity as a Corporate Trainer and Employee Satisfaction Specialist for a Fortune 100 company. Alas, as much as she loved her career, she also yearned to explore her creative side. Lena started her blog, Listen to Lena, as a way of communicating the best parenting finds to friends and family, but as she continued to post, it was not long before an old passion was reignited – writing. And so her site evolved to focus on her love of creative writing and includes product reviews and features, humorous takes on parenthood and her famous random rants.
Armed with a loyal readership of over 20,000 unique visitors per month and enviable reader engagement, she has built a niche brand that speaks to moms, fashionistas, beauty junkies and foodies alike. From her hilarious take on changing one’s hairstyle to her intimate retelling of her son’s birth injury, Lena knows how to connect with her audience.
(Says Lena: “That’s me and my pal Oprah. No big deal.”)
Selected highlights from 2012 are as follows:
In February, Lena signed on to join the revolution in online shopping as SHOP.CA’s Official Shopaholic. Managing a team of four “Super Shoppers” (fellow online influencers), she creates dynamic engagement among their combined audiences to promote a premier shopping destination created for Canadians, by Canadians.
Later that month, she published “Imperfect”, which was both syndicated and featured on BlogHer, the web’s leading guide to the hottest news and trends among women in social media. The post tells a tale about a mother who strives for excellence instead of perfection, and was one of her most viewed posts of the year.
Lena was chosen as one of six bloggers across Canada to be featured in Lancôme’s Teinte Idol Campaign, where a portrait of her face was immortalized on canvas by Canadian artist Shane Turner. As a mother of two, Lena continues to break out of the “mommy blogger” mold and is widely recognized as a premier lifestyle and beauty blogger as well.
Did you know that Lena loves creating in the kitchen? Her love of great good – and her culinary creativity – were rewarded when she won the Hidden Valley Ranch Recipe Challenge for her Grilled Salmon Tacos with Avocado Ranch Dressing. Celebrity chef Ned Bell selected her recipe among blogger submissions from across Canada. The accomplishment follows another one of her winning recipes (“The Miami”) in the Black & Decker Ultimate Sandwich Challenge from 2011. It’s official – Lena knows a thing or two about good eats.
Revered for her ability to reach a variety of audiences, Dell asked Lena to come on board as an ambassador for their #XPS13 campaign. Known for its portability and ease of use, Lena took it here, there and everywhere – including press trips to Fisher-Price Headquarters in East Aurora, NY, BlogHer ’12 and the Fashion Forward Conference in New York, NY – to name a few.
At the beginning of September, Lena hosted a private screening of Finding Nemo 3D at Cineplex Odeon Queensway Cinemas for 200 lucky readers, courtesy of Goldfish Pretzels. The event sold out quickly and added to Lena’s resume of hosting live events.
Lena travelled with her family for the first time – in a big way! – on a 7-day Royal Caribbean Cruise aboard their world-renowned Allure of the Seas. The press trip was coordinated on behalf of Fisher-Price, and as a #FisherPriceMom, Lena provided detailed coverage about her first experience with family travel.
As part of the Proctor and Gamble #PGMom program, Lena challenged the way beauty companies market to moms. Her post sparked a debate among readers and bloggers alike, who shared their own experiences and insights via Twitter and blog comments.
In December, Lena became the first “face” of PayPal Canada when she signed on as their Online Shopping Expert. Providing media coverage on outlets such as CTV Live, Newstalk Radio, The Globe and Mail online and more, she shared her best tips for finding great holiday gifts at great prices.
Family travel continued as Lena was invited to witness the grand opening of Walt Disney World’s New Fantasyland expansion. Her posts “The Most Magical Place on Earth…” and “Inside the Magic: Disney World’s New Fantasyland” continue to receive incredible traffic thanks to her conscientious and thorough coverage of the live event. (And, she’s a hero for life in the eyes of her two boys, who adored Disney World, of course.)
Finally, to round out the year, Lena participated in a Kraft #DessertMoments photo shoot, where she showcased simple and delicious holiday desserts.
For additional information, please contact Lena Almeida – lena(at)listentolena[dot]com.
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