Have you thought about joining the marketing industry? Look to any business and you will see direct evidence of their marketing efforts. Their signage? Marketing. Their website? Marketing. Their radio/paper/online ad? Marketing. It's hard to get away from it. In the digital age, it can feel like everything and everyone is marketing themselves all over the place, all of the time. With a generation whose eyes and hands are often glued to their computer or mobile device, we are constantly consuming even when we don't think we are. With that being said, some may argue that marketing is dead. Or, at least, traditional marketing is dead. Back in 2012, The Harvard Business Review published an article titled “Marketing is Dead.” But, we don't think that's necessarily the case. Sure, marketing has evolved into an entirely new concept with the introduction of an internet and social media crazed generation, but at the end of the day, we believe marketing is still alive and well. While the description may look slightly different, we believe marketing is on its way to becoming more effective than it's ever been.
In the age of social media, it can be hard to stand out amongst the crowd – this could be one of the reasons many company CEO’s and execs think marketing is on its way to becoming a dead industry. Consumer habits and the way they find and purchase things is changing rapidly along with technology. We can agree that traditional marketing tactics may no longer be effective for everyone, but marketing as a whole is quickly evolving and becoming more important than ever. With technology advancing consumers are changing and it is marketers jobs to ensure they are staying relevant, and up to date with new trends and consumer tendencies. In other words, the marketing world's future is brighter than ever and advancing quickly. If you have ever thought about taking the jump into this industry, the time has never been better than now.
If everything we said above didn't scare you off yet, chances are you are at least semi-interested in a digital marketing internship and what that career entails. One of the best ways to test the waters is to get a marketing internship. Whether or not you seek out a paid internships, summer internships, or full-time internships is up to you and who you are looking to work for. Marketing is at a dynamic crossroads – it is evolving and so is its role in companies and the digital landscape. Read on for all of the information we've compiled on marketing, and becoming a marketing intern.
What Exactly Does a Marketer Do?
While the way companies market themselves is ever-changing, they way they analyze their customers is simple: collect relevant information and apply that to your companies products/services and how you can make them appeal to your customer base. While there is no set job description, at the end of the day, anyone looking into a marketing internship or career should probably have a stats driven work ethic. Marketers generally analyze the public demand for their product or service and turn those results into strategies to promote directly to their specific customer base. As they say, someone who is marketing to everyone is actually marketing to no one. Knowing your companies customer base is crucial to your marketing plans success.
As for marketing interns, they will typically operate under the supervision of a marketing manager or CMO (Chief Marketing Operator.) Their duties can include a multitude of things depending on who and what they are marketing for. If you’re on the hunt for a marketing internship, we suggest checking out any prospective employers online presence, social media, etc. to ensure their values align with your own. After all, it can be hard to promote a company or product you aren't completely on board with.
What Skills Do Great Marketers Have?
- Marketers need to be continuously finding “solutions” to the “problem” of selling a company or product. The ability to be adaptable based on feedback or market changes is crucial to any marketers success.
- A good marketer should know all the ins and outs of their company and product/service they offer. More importantly, they need to know the ins and outs of their target customer base to avoid accidental slip ups and turn-offs. Any gap in knowledge can result in unsatisfied customers.
Time Management Skills
- Marketing plans and all that they entail often have very specific parameters – one of them being timelines and deadlines. For example, if you have a new product launching on a specific date in 6 months you are likely doing market research, planning, etc. for quite some time beforehand. Putting any aspect of your plan off until the last minute can be detrimental to the entire launch. You know what they say… being three hours too soon is better than being even one minute late.
- While being artistic isn't necessarily a marketing job requirement, you do need to be able to see the “bigger picture.” With ever-changing trends, a good marketer will need to be able to think innovatively and keep their company ahead of its competitors.
Communication and People Skills
- A huge aspect of marketing is being a “people person.” You don't need to be the most outgoing person ever, but this job is all about making connections and getting people on board with your idea. In addition, being capable of communicating with people (consumers, your marketing manager, and co-workers) clearly and personably is crucial to your success. You will not only be communicating ideas, strategies, etc. with people at all levels of your company, but you will be communicating your brand value to consumers everywhere.
How To Prepare For A Marketing Internship
Consider What Type of Marketing You Want To Work In
- Have you considered what type of marketing internships you are interested in? Summer internships, paid internships, unpaid internships? Also, have you considered what areas of marketing interest you the most? There are so many different areas of work that fall under the term “marketing” that it can be tough to pick just one. Are you interested in Market Research only? Public Relations? Digital Media? Brand Management? Web Development? Check it out and do your research! The only thing worse than not securing an internship is securing an internship doing work you hate. Put in the work beforehand and reap the benefits of loving your job later. For digital marketing internships, companies rarely require hands-on experience as the point of your internship program is to learn and explore the marketing field.
Check Out and Prepare Your “Personal Brand” Beforehand
- Have you ever Googled yourself? Chances are that's what your potential employer will do when looking to hire you for their digital marketing intern. While a quick Google search of your name may or may not come up with anything even related to you, it's worth checking out. This includes reviewing (and editing!) your social media accounts to reflect your professional self, updating your LinkedIn/other online portfolios and ensuring there's nothing iffy they can pull out of the woodworks. After all, a lot of marketing entails being on the interwebs and you want to position yourself there strategically and accordingly.
Write a Resume and Cover Letter That Stand Out
- This may sound obvious, but a great resume and cover letter can go a long way! Some employers look for such specific cues on resumes and cover letters that they won’t even review ones that don't meet their standards right off the bat. While you should always keep it quick and concise, this is your chance to make a first impression before even meeting them. A few rules to keep in mind: don't repeat your resume when writing your cover letter, use language related to the job you are applying for, and use results-driven work examples when possible.
Actually Prepare For Your Interview
- Again, this one may sound obvious but you can never be too prepared. Some helpful tips on how to better prepare yourself for you interview are:
- Do some research on the company and your interviewer if possible. Find out more about their brand, their mission statement, work they’ve done, etc. Doing so can help you make personal connections and help you relate to the company on a personal level.
- Consider reaching out to your marketing agency, interviewer, or the company CEO ahead of time to relay your appreciation for even being offered an interview. This can go a long way and keeps you at the forefront of their minds.
What Is A Paid Marketing Internship?
While internships are typically unpaid, it is not unheard of to secure a paid internship. While they can be scarce depending on the area you live in, and the career you are seeking, a little bit of research can help you find internships near you. Choosing between the two may seem like a no-brainer (who doesn't want to get paid for work?) there are many factors you should take into consideration when applying, and deciding where you will intern. Depending on your circumstances, and if you have the resources to support yourself whilst NOT being paid, unpaid internships can usually offer more hands-on experience as they are usually within smaller companies. Another perk? You are more likely to secure a paid internship down the line if you have an unpaid internship under your belt already. Depending on the field of marketing you are seeking work in, your duties as an intern will vary greatly. Internships typically run on the same work schedule as your superiors (typically Monday – Friday) but events, errands, and more may add some variation to your working hours. While it can be hard to committing to working a full-time job unpaid, we recommend checking out both paid and unpaid internships. Both have perks, and both will benefit you as you continue your education in the marketing field.
Summer Marketing Internship Ideas
While you can find some marketing internships throughout the year, most companies offer more opportunities in the summertime to give college students a chance to get intern experience while working towards their degree. And as you know by now, marketing is a pretty broad field of work. You can do market research, brand management, development, and so much more. So, the type of marketing internship you should seek (and hopefully secure) should be related to your desired field of work. If you are looking into conducting market research, an internship promoting a brand via social media, etc. likely won't be beneficial to you. Ask yourself, are you interested in working in the analytical field? The creative field? Be sure you are seeking internships and opportunities that will teach you these skills, and hopefully give you hands-on experience in your desired field of work.