Being in my final year of university, it began to dawn on me that I should really be thinking about what I want to do after my studies. I took a million and one ‘what job should I do?’ and ‘what career is for me’ quizzes online, and after getting answers from ‘Doctor’ to ‘Cake Tasting Expert’, I finally decided that I just needed to throw myself in the deep end, and get some work experience.
I then started attending careers fairs at my university where I met Sarah and Sophie from Zelst. As Client Services Director and Account Manager at Zelst, they have a wealth of knowledge on digital marketing and gave me a snapshot of what a job in the industry would entail. It was really eye-opening as I had never thought digital marketing to have so many elements to it.
On my first day of work experience I was shown to my own desk and computer, a little scared that they had already given me a bit too much responsibility, but I was assured that someone was there to guide me through every step, and my introduction to the office dog, Pongo, made me feel much more at home. My first day consisted of an introduction into SEO and keyword research, led by the very informative Managing Director Peter. After teaching me the basics of SEO I had my own tasks to complete, which thanks to Peter, I found much less complex than the intimidating name of ‘Search Engine Optimisation’. I found this part of digital marketing very insightful, as I learnt that there is so much more that goes on behind what appears on your Google search page.
The next day, Saf, the Content, Social Media and Outreach Executive, guided me through the process of content ideation and construction. Witnessing first-hand how Saf fully researches the business she is creating content for, shows how varied and interesting the content you can create be. After critiquing and pitching suggested content for a business that they were currently working with, I was able to get even more creative when tasked to create infographic work for that company. Using graphic design tool, Canva, I created a couple infographic pieces which were posted to the business’ social media. Not only did I learn new skills in using Canva, I also learnt how varied and different a job in digital marketing can be from day to day.
Wednesday saw me come down with a cold (man flu), but with the days’ focus being on social media, I couldn’t let my cold get me down. Having grown up with the use social media, I felt like this area was something I had already had a lot of experience in. But after Saf’s tutorial on the subject, I quickly realised that there is a lot more to social media, than posting your holiday pics to Instagram. There’s many factors to take into consideration when using a business social media page, such as creating appropriate and engaging posts, to eyeing-out competitors and seeing what they’re doing differently and what we could take from that and improve on.
On Thursday, I was introduced to Paid Advertising by Charlie, the office expert on PPC and Google Shopping. From not knowing much at all about how adverts are presented to Google, to actually creating my own adverts using Google AdWords, is a testament to Charlie’s mentorship. He showed me the ins and outs of creating effective adverts, and related them to the business aspect of them such as click through rates and sale conversions.
My final day started with putting everything I had learnt throughout the week into practise, when tasked to assess the social media outlets of a new client, something I felt confident in thanks to the training I had training a received throughout the week. It was great to immerse myself in the research needed for the new client and to give Zelst my perspective of what was needed in order to improve the client’s social media.
Over the week I have learnt so much about the world of digital marketing and I owe it to the team at Zelst for all being such great mentors during the process. The experience has given me a taste of what a real job in the marketing sector is like and cleared my thoughts on what I may want to do in the future. I’ve found that I have genuine interest in many of the aspects of digital marketing which I hope to pursue further and hopefully go into a job where I can advance those interests. I can’t thank everyone at Zelst enough for making me feel part of the team from day one, and for all their expert knowledge in their respective fields. Thank you to everyone at Zelst: Peter, Sarah, Sophie, Saf, Carl, Charlie, Amaya, Alex and of course Pongo; I’m so grateful for the week I’ve had here, hope to see you all soon!