Laura explains how crucial her media studies degree is for her role in digital marketing and how much she enjoys creating new marketing strategies
What degree did you study?
I studied a BA (Honours) in Media Studies at the University of Brighton. I went on to do an MSc in Digital Marketing Communication in the Netherlands with an extra-curricular course in change management and leadership.
How did you get your job?
While I was finishing my Masters, I worked part time in the marketing department of a company. This companies' marketing department was rather small, so they also hired a marketing agency, correlio, to help out. During my employment, I focused mainly on generating a social media strategy and got to work with the agency as part of this project. I then got offered a position as a project manager in correlio when I graduated from my MSc.
How relevant is your degree?
I would say that my media studies degree built the entire foundation for my current job role. I learned how the media industry and different media outlets work, as well as why certain media and types of communication influence us the way they do. It would be impossible to do my job without having gathered this knowledge.
Most importantly though, I learned how to think critically. This is an invaluable skill and helps me immensely when analysing target groups and trying to understand them. My MSc helped me in fine tuning these skills to the databased area of marketing, which I personally really love.
What's a typical working day like?
My day involves scheduling and looking after the online communication of our clients. I check their social networks to see if we have to react to any messages and comments and look after our posting schedule and the relevant materials we need to finish them up. I also regularly generate reports on the key metrics of our clients' social accounts with advice on how to move forward.
As a key account for some of our clients I also have to make sure all projects are on track and check in with the team to see where we might need to re-adjust. I then communicate this information to the respective client and arrange follow up meetings.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
Even though managing projects is fun, I absolutely love it when we are creating a whole new marketing strategy for the client. I love holding workshops and trying to understand the brand, to work together with them to create an image they feel they can identify with and to generate realistic goals for the foreseeable future.
It is nice that every client is somewhat different, and it requires me to think on my feet every day. While this can be exhausting sometimes, it is really exciting and rewarding to see hard work pay off in the end.
What are the challenges?
I think the fact that all the clients are different can sometimes be hard because you find yourself in situations that you haven't been in before rather often. But you learn as you go along and it doesn't really get boring.
Where do you hope to be in five years?
I hope that I can be leading a whole team in five years and be a key account for several of our clients. I also think that I will do more work in the consulting area, creating strategies and helping clients reach their full potential.
What advice can you give to others?
Firstly, try to do internships or part time jobs. It is important that you can show some experience in the field because marketing is rather competitive. Maybe you can get some letters of recommendation or create a portfolio of campaigns that you have been a part of to add to your applications.
Secondly, don't dismiss any opportunities just because they aren't exactly what you want to do right away. Of course, it is important to do something you think you are going to enjoy but if you have a foot in the door, it is a lot easier to get to where you want to be.
And the third one is network, network, network. Go out there and be proactive. Send LinkedIn invitations, send emails, follow marketing related blogs and call up agencies or companies you want to work for, even if they do not advertise any jobs online. Any internship or job opportunity I have done so far, I got through my network.