Q&A: Marketing Intern – August 2020 for NewGrad

1. How did you find the internship?

My first internship was at a property consultancy in the summer of 2017.

I applied for the role on a speculative basis, provided them with my CV and explained I wanted to gain marketing work experience. Once I heard back from the Head of Marketing, we met to discuss the specifics of the placement, including the length of the internship and my pay.

My internship spanned four months and took place before my first year at university. In my eyes it’s quite rare to have such an extended placement, but I actively wanted to fill my summer up with experience in marketing so I could learn more about the industry as a whole.

The length of the internship allowed me to truly understand the company, develop lots of valuable transferable skills and get stuck in on multiple projects before my internship ended.  I was sent a contract via email after the meeting and began the placement mid-June.

My second work placement was a stroke of luck, I saw a notice on my village’s notice board about a property management agency who needed help with administrative tasks. I called the number provided and started work the following Monday. The role had varied hours and spanned July and August of 2018. Don’t be afraid to look in unconventional places for work opportunities!

Last summer, I badly wanted to return to the company who hosted my first internship. I contacted my colleagues to ask if I could return as Marketing Intern and they confirmed they’d be happy to have me back. After a department restructure and office re-vamp, the company felt brand new to me. In the 10 weeks I worked for them, I learnt so much more about marketing, but also about business development, internal communications and PR. This internship taught me to not to be afraid of reaching out to people in my network to find work opportunities.

2.What advice would you give to anyone considering applying for a marketing internship?

Don’t be afraid to work in an industry which might not initially appeal to you, because you will end up enjoying it. All three of my internships have been within the property industry, working within a team of other marketers.

If you pursue a career in marketing, you’ll either work in an external agency or an in-house department. Agency work means you’ll work within many different industries, whereas working in an internal department allows you to specialise. Sitting within an internal department has allowed me to truly understand the company’s values and apply this insider knowledge to my marketing and PR campaigns.

3.What did you do day to day on your marketing internship?

Each day varied a lot, but I largely started my day by checking email inboxes and completing various administrative tasks for my colleagues. Then I would begin to focus on other assignments, such as content writing, email marketing campaign creation, or internal communications and PR.

Over the course of my final internship, my colleagues discovered that I was the incoming Deputy Editor-in-Chief of my university’s newspaper so had an ability to write articles and blogs. Soon I began copywriting and creating content for the company’s website and wrote newspaper articles to promote the company. I felt that I was adding something to the company and showed them how I was not just a university student but a marketing and PR professional.

4.Was the internship paid?

I’ve been very lucky to have been paid for all of my work experience. It made me feel valued, but I also believe being paid motivates interns to be hardworking and prove their worth to the company they work for, but also make a positive lasting impression on their colleagues.

5.What was the recruitment process like?

As a result of my speculative applications, I believe my recruitment process is slightly unusual. I’d definitely advocate thinking on your feet and asking about opportunities, even if your chosen company are not advertising job vacancies. More often than not, companies chose applicants who are passionate about their business, so speculative applications show them that you are highly motivated and extremely interested in working for them.

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