• Freya Stevens

Securing a marketing job as a first year marketing student...

From moving away to a new city to study my degree online to securing a job at a local marketing agency, all in just under a year!

Image of young woman with long dark hair standing behind a plant

Here is how I did it...

In September 2020, I moved to Liverpool to study marketing at The University of Liverpool. Excited, apprehensive, and proud were just some of the emotions I was feeling on my ‘moving in’ day. Despite COVID-19 trying to ruin our party, we all made the best out of our situation and had fun in other ways.

Unfortunately, we did not get to attend any live lectures or seminars this year which made it hard to make friends from my course. However, it did mean that I could watch my lectures at my own pace whilst wearing my pj’s 👌🏼.

So fast forward to May 2021 and I’m thinking about my summer holidays and how I can best use my time ⏰.

One of my modules this year was focused on preparing for a placement year. We were assessed on things like our CV's and our performance in a digital assessment centre. I found this challenging as it pushed me out of my comfort zone (I hate presenting in front of people) but I enjoyed the fact that it was quite practical.

As an ex national-level competitive swimmer and swim teacher, my CV was overwhelmed with swimming, swimming, and more swimming. Whilst this showed my dedication, self discipline, and many other transferable skills, it didn’t represent me as a full rounded person.

What else did I have to say about myself? 🤷🏽‍♀️

Reflecting on this drove me to think of how I could maximise my chances of securing a placement in my third year.

I came home in May 2021 and discussed my options for summer with my parents. I wanted some work experience in the marketing industry to gain an insight into the different aspects of marketing. However, being a student meant that I didn’t have much money left so I also needed to earn some money back.

To me it was more important to gain some work experience as I believed it had greater long term value. This led me to look for some potential work experience. If I was unsuccessful at finding anything I would still have enough time to apply for a summer job elsewhere 🤓.

‘Who you know, not what you know’ is a term that is constantly flown about. I asked my Godmother Ann, who owns several businesses herself, if she knew anyone who I could possibly get some experience with. She told me to send her some details about myself such as what experience I wanted, my availability, my A levels, and a brief run through of the modules I have studied.

I didn’t care where or for how long really (whether it was one week or three), I just wanted to learn as much as I could. I decided it was best to be flexible so that I didn’t rule out any opportunities. It helped that I wasn't coming home to any prior commitments.

June 2021

Hannah from The Brady Creative gets in touch with me to arrange a call 🥳.

The call was set up off the back of what I sent to Ann. It was to see if I would fit into their business and to see what sort of thing I was looking for. I said that I would be able to work for free for three weeks but then I would have to find a paid job. Hannah said that was good and worked for her and that after the three weeks we could see how we both felt, and that there was a possibility for me to continue in a paid role.

During the call I expressed my interest in the creative graphic side as well as marketing knowing this is where Helen’s expertise are. Hannah suggested that I could work on a couple of projects allowing me to experience with both design and copywriting. I left the call feeling excited to start 🤩.

From the call I learnt that it is best to be yourself, ask questions, and express what you would like to gain and/or experience.

Two young women in an informal business meeting laughing

I came home from Uni on the 19th of June and started my work experience on the 21st. I was looking forward to having a routine again and working in an office space. When I arrived at the office at 9:30 I was thrown straight in, and joined a client call. I immediately knew that I was going to get a great insight and not just be making tea ☕️.

I was given two projects to fill my work experience time. The first was around blog research which I documented in a creative report using the branding of The Brady Creative. I also created a twelve month blog calendar for the business and wrote one of the blogs. Then I started the creative project where I worked with Helen to create some branding concepts for Hannah’s passion project. I will be presenting my ideas to Hannah and Helen in a couple of weeks 👀.

I was also lucky enough to go to London with Hannah to meet a client and get some content for their social media and website. I had the best day and we even stayed to watch the England Euro semi-final which we watched on a roof-top terrace with the Shard in view 🤩.

View of the Shard in London with blue sky and clouds

Towards the end of my work experience a Social Media Internship came up. The job involved running Instagram and Twitter pages for a reporting company that would be covering the Olympics and Paralympics. Hannah told me to apply as it was a good opportunity.

I revised my CV and sent it. I was called in for an interview, and I found out a bit more about the job. Things like hours, start times, wages etc… I was happy to be offered the job since it sounded like an exciting opportunity and I also really needed the money. However, I really had to think about it because for me it was a big commitment to be working almost every weekend for the rest of my summer. I also personally found the thought of a 7:30 start very very early 🤭 (especially factoring the commute as the job was in Milton Keynes and I live in Northampton).

The following day at work I spoke to Hannah about what I had been offered after talking it through with my parents.

CURVE BALL!!!☄️ - Hannah offers me a job!!!

A Monday to Friday job for the summer. This took me by surprise as I had assumed Hannah would only offer me a part time role (never assume anything!!). She also said that if I wanted a day or two off to visit my friends I could - this was a big thing for me as it is my summer holiday after all 😎.

I weighed up both my options, I could not believe that I was choosing between two jobs that were both, in their own right, relevant to my degree. It was a hard decision to make.

After learning so much in the three weeks at The Brady Creative, I decided the best thing for me to do would be to stay. I also felt like I fitted in and I appreciated their enjoyable work environment.

young woman with dark hair, smiling behind her screen

I have now worked at The Brady Creative for six weeks (three of which were work experience and three as a Junior Marketing Assistant). As part of my role so far I have scheduled social media posts, made social media reports, written a couple of blogs, done some hashtag research, continued working on the branding project, planned content calendars, started working on internal processing, and attended client calls and content days.

Two young business women in an informal discussion over a laptop with cups of tea

I have really enjoyed my time working at The Brady Creative so far. Hannah and Helen are genuine women with lots of knowledge to learn from. Watching how they navigate client calls and their other day to day work has also shown me a great example of how to hold myself in a professional environment. I can't wait to see what the next five weeks bring 😄.

#student #workexperience #marketingjobs #marketingassistant

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