Personal Branding & Influence

Date: Thursday, August 6, 2020 from 3:00 – 4:00pm PT  / 6:00 – 7:00pm ET
  • Alec Treffers, Comms & Brand Engagement Sr. Specialist, Taco Bell
  • Erika Prime, Digital and Social Strategy Lead, Taco Bell
  • Matt Prince, Sr. Manager, Public Relations & Brand Experience, Taco Bell
  • Melissa Rodriguez, Lifestyle Blogger and Social Media Community Manager at The Drybar
Register now!
Taco Bell is well known for its distinct social media presence. In this session, you’ll hear from Taco Bell’s social media and engagement experts and influencers. They will share their career journeys, discuss what influence is, how to influence others, and tips to use social media as a tool for career development, personal branding, learning and network building.

About Alec

Alec Treffers has been part of the Taco Bell family for over 6 years, working in the Public Relations department. In her current role, Alec works closely with cross-functional partners at Taco Bell to create a seamless narrative across earned, owned and paid marketing channels in communicating the brand’s latest innovations, it’s commitment to value and accessibility and building buzz around new ways to access the brand, whether that be through new digital platforms, experiences like Weddings and The Bell Hotel or partnerships with the NBA, MLB and NCAA Football.

Alec also works closely with Taco Bell’s dietitians in seeing to it that Taco Bell be the recognizable leader of vegetarian offerings and to drive media and consumer awareness of Taco Bell’s commitment to food for all lifestyles, our people and our planet.

Alec received her BA in Journalism and Mass Communication from Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication, while playing D1 Women’s Volleyball. After a year post-undergrad working for a small marketing and advertising company in Scottsdale, Arizona, Alec headed back to her California roots and earned her Master of Arts degree in Strategic Public Relations at the University of Southern California’s Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism.

Alec is also a certified nutritionist and health coach passionate about inspiring the healthy spirit animal in others and creates and shares healthy recipes on her Instagram page, @alectreffs.

About Erika

Erika Prime heads up the Social Media Team at Taco Bell. She sets the strategic and creative direction for all campaigns including food and digital innovation, brand engagement, and cultural topspin. Erika has worked with the brand for over six years, contributing to several of Taco Bell’s biggest campaigns: Taco Emoji Engine, Taco Bell Weddings and The Bell Hotel. Prior to joining Taco Bell, Erika worked in entertainment with the Anaheim Ducks. She graduated from California State University Fullerton in 2013 with a degree in Communications.

Erika has always been a creative person, but growing up, she doubted her abilities. In her own words, “I was (and still am) very hard on myself as an artist and was too scared to pursue the arts as a career. There was always that “if” factor. What if I run out of ideas? Well, I quickly learned that it’s impossible to run out of ideas. I am tested creatively on the daily and am ready for the next challenge. Thanks to my job, I was able to find out who I am as an artist and to never give up on my passion – or myself. “

Check out Erika’s blog at

About Matt

Matt currently leads Taco Bell’s earned media, communications integration, and special projects for the global brand. He is responsible, in part, for several of culture’s biggest contributions: The Taco Bell Hotel, Taco Bell weddings, Taco Bell Beer, creation of the taco emoji and saving the world’s first Taco Bell… you’re welcome.

Previously, Prince lead social media engagement for the Walt Disney Co. where he developed and managed the company’s first ever Social Media Command Center and online engagement program. Prior to that, Prince was Sr. Manager of Executive Communications, handling speech writing and strategic communications for the President of Disneyland and over 70 executives.

Prince has been recognized in ADWEEK’s 31 Young Influentials List, and two 40 Under 40 lists: PR Week and OC Metro Magazine. Most recently, he was recipient of Public Relations Society of America’s Distinguished Service Award, their highest honor to an individual leading the local community in Public Relations. He served as President of the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA), Orange County Chapter in 2014 and is the advisor to his Alma Mater (California State University Fullerton’s) PRSA student chapter since 2011. He was inducted in to the PRSSA National Hall of Fame, and was named ‘National Advisor of the Year’ twice (2013 & 2015).

About Melissa

Melissa Rodriguez is a Social Media Specialist and Lifestyle Blogger. She began her blogging journey in 2012 while working at a Fashion PR firm in LA, didn’t have a single clue what blogging even was and kept her online diary a secret for months. Only knowing she loved to write and tell stories, she combined those passions, put them into her blog and finally aligned her efforts on social media. Since launching, Melissa became an active member of the We All Grow Latina Bloggers community, contributed work to Lucky Magazine, has partnered up with over a hundred brands, most notably Badgley Mishka, Banana Republic and Pottery Barn, and was featured in a 2018 Neutrogena campaign alongside 10 other Latina tastemakers.

Melissa currently heads up social media community engagement, influencer and brand partnerships, special projects and sits on the new product development board at The Drybar. Previously, she worked on the Social Care team at Taco Bell and on the Marketing team at Fletcher Jones Motorcars. She received a Bachelor’s degree in Communications and Media Studies from CSU Dominguez Hills in 2013 and a Master’s degree in Communications and Public Relations from Southern New Hampshire University in 2016. A huge supporter of education, Melissa loves to credit her career and personal brand to the combination of education and self-trial, but mostly her blog, which opened several doors and helped her land her last three jobs.