The internship experience is crucial to college students or recent graduates looking to immerse themselves in the field they want to pursue a career in. The “real world” experience an internship provides isn’t something that you’ll find in a classroom, and is a valuable opportunity to learn the skills needed to be an asset to any business or company.
At our digital agency, Blue Fountain Media, we regularly host intern programs to a select group of young professionals seeking an extensive learning experience in the digital marketing industry. Whether it is on our social media, strategy, or other digital marketing teams — our interns work alongside various levels of experts in their selected specialty areas to ensure they are gaining the most they can from their internship.
Real World Experience
To grasp the logistics of any business or industry outside of what you’ll learn in a classroom, an internship that provides legitimate experience and field work is necessary. For our interns, they’ve been added onto projects with our associates, specialists and various levels of management, and tasked with specific, recurring responsibilities.
These responsibilities aren’t the standard intern duties that you would find at some other New York City agencies, and interns can expect to directly influence client success with the work they do. “I’ve been doing a lot of influencer research for certain projects—really gauging the demographic of the target audience for new websites we’re launching so that we can appropriately shape our social media strategies,” says Social Media Intern Fardard. “I create a ton of content calendars for the clients we work with, which is really building the backbone for what their social media will look like on a day to day basis. I’ll take a look at what stuff needs to be changed, what calls to action we have, and what kind of posts we can create that will leave users coming back for more.”
Regardless of what department interns are in, they are constantly challenged to understand the clients they work with and directly contribute ideas and work that directly to solve the marketing challenges that affect each account. “We’re really learning when we’re here—never just doing meaningless tasks that take up our time,” says Strategy Intern Ben. “We’re understanding the clients and how different each client can be, what they’re like, and the type of needs they have. Most different from other internships is that we aren’t just hearing this from our supervisor, but we’re actually part of the meetings and hearing client feedback which is something that is definitely so valuable.”
Diversity in Projects
Since we work with such a wide portfolio of clients the work for each client is always somewhat unique. There are always new clients, with new projects that need to be completed using different strategies and tactics. Regardless of the kind of work or specialty area, the diversity across all of our projects makes each day unique and exciting. “All of the clients are so different and all of the projects we work on have such different requirements and needs that it always feels new,” says Strategy Intern Cody. “The best thing about the internship so far is the diversity with it. The work that I am doing is typically consistent, but the projects are always changing,” says Social Media Intern Ashly.
“When my internship first began, I was introduced to a lot of the projects and clients through brainstorms. Soon after, I was involved in the website audits and competitive analysis phase of the strategy process, which I learned was crucial,” says Cody. “Now, I’m getting to be part of the entire audit process as a whole, applying the analytics behind it and putting all the pieces we learned together. It really never gets boring.”
A great company culture is vital to the success of any organization. When employees are excited to come to work each day because they know they are appreciated and valued, their work reflects their positive attitude. At Blue Fountain Media, we truly emphasize company culture and its role in our entire business model. Our interns have experienced this from day one.
“You can tell that everyone here is happy to be around one another and be part of the company. In a lot of offices that I’ve been in, all the staff will get in at 9 and leave at 5 on the dot, and nobody will grab lunch together or ask any questions beyond the usual watercooler topics,” says Fardad. “There is such a strong company culture here—which is something I feel is incredibly important. Whether it’s a small holiday or a birthday, Blue Fountain Media goes the extra mile to make it important,” says Ben. “It’s nice that they will show a real appreciation for everyone working hard, and give some time throughout the week for employees to not worry about just business. That’s something you won’t find at every company.”
Being Part of the Team
Our interns work closely with different staff members, and are entirely included on client projects. They are truly considered part of our team and are often key contributors when it comes to innovative suggestions and new tactics to implement. This is particularly important for interns who want to have some of their unique ideas considered as possible alternatives or additions to existing client strategies. “I’m constantly popping in with different suggestions or arbitrary thoughts even if I’m not directly involved,” says Cody. “At that point the strategists can see some ideas from a fresh perspective and if they want to move forward with it, they can. “
In order to share ideas and help everyone seem like they are part of the same team, directors and managers provide opportunities for other employees to get a taste of what they do on a daily basis so they can become better overall digital marketers. “In all the departments, it seems like all the employees want to share with the entire company their best tips or ideas, and as an intern I feel part of that,” says Ashly. “Each week, different directors or managers will host workshops for whoever wants to attend that go into brief detail about their specialty area. It’s made me feel very part of the team.”
The ideas our interns have are never overlooked, and often, the best suggestions we have that will shape upcoming campaigns and projects will come from a fresh set of eyes and ears. “There is definitely an “open-door policy” at the company when it comes to ideas. If I find out one of the strategists is working on a project that I’m not part of—I’ll send them a quick message whenever I think of random ideas that are related to it,” says Cody. “Everyone is incredibly welcoming and eager to help whenever I have a question or want to suggest an idea,” says Ashly.
Identifying Different Career Paths
Whether it is at Blue Fountain Media, an internal digital marketing team, or even at a different agency, we want our interns to learn essentials that they need to be successful in their career while they intern with us. The flexibility and diversity of their experience allows them to identify and approach the specialty areas they want to focus on during their careers. “Working in strategy teaches you the skills that are so necessary in the industry. When I was first looking up different internships, and researching what a strategy department does, it was apparent that it was definitely something that is crucial to digital agencies, but not as widely recognized as a marketing department is,” says Cody. “While I didn’t know much about strategy a few months ago, I can now confidently say that this is the area I want to continue with in the future.”
Some interns even find that after their experience that they want to have a career in a different department of a digital agency, as was the case with Fardad. “I started off doing social media, and was fortunate to learn a lot about strategy too—examining the creative end of how any business goes about changes to a website or campaign. Something you won’t find at most other agencies is that you really learn so much besides your core focus, and this is something I think is crucial to the intern program. Next month, I’ll be starting a full-time position in the Business Development department, and much of what I have experienced working on the marketing end of projects, I hope will be a contributor to what will make my new position the perfect fit for me."
The Intern Experience
Interested in learning more about an internship at Blue Fountain Media? Visit our about us section to find out more about our agency, and if you think you’re a fit for our team!