Interning During a Pandemic
During my last semester at the University of Auckland as a BA student majoring in Communications and Sociology, I interned for Smarketing Lab. My experience at Smarketing Lab helped me to develop valuable skills that I can carry with me into my career in communications. These skills included copywriting, designing, time management and many other skills. Through interning with Smarketing Lab, I was given the opportunity to work on projects with a variety of clients in different fields of work.
Majority of my work consisted of creating and designing emails, editing, copywriting and creating and uploading social media posts. This allowed me to have hands-on experience and be able to properly engage with the work I was doing. I was working to real-life briefs for clients and had direct contact with my main client. Communicating with my client directly also helped me to develop better written and verbal communication skills via contact through phone and email. This made me feel that I had an important role in the projects I was working on and that I wasn’t simply just an intern working in the background.
Although at times the internship was challenging with balancing part-time work and university, this challenged me to think about how I could use my time in a more smart and efficient way to ensure I was completing all work to a high standard. I had great support from my internship supervisor (Kyla) and Smarketing Lab were always accommodating by allowing me to work my hours when I wanted to. Therefore, this allowed me to balance my work, university, and personal life.
However, the challenge of the pandemic arose when I was halfway through my internship. Once again, the way that we were working, learning, and communicating completely changed. Although, this shift came as an unexpected one, most businesses are now well equipped for a shift to a complete online workplace and Smarketing Lab is no exception.
One of the best aspects of interning at Smarketing Lab was that majority of the work was already done online. Having a business that is structured around working from home during a pandemic is a significant advantage. In uncertain times, this makes it easier for interns and employees to continue to complete their work despite being at home. In comparison to other students doing internships at the same time, many of them were unable to continue or complete their internships due to their workplace having a lack of work for them to do or an inadequate online set-up. I was lucky that this was not the case at Smarketing Lab, and I was able to continue to work on the projects for my client without many changes.
Smarketing Lab also allowed me insight into the B2B marketing world that I wasn’t so familiar with when beginning my internship role. I would like to give some insight into the strategy Smarketing Lab uses to grow B2B sales for a variety of clients. This strategy consists of the four R’s:
- Right audience
- Relevant content
- Repetitive connections
- Relentless follow-up
By using this strategy, Smarketing Lab engages more clients in B2B sales and expands the market for their clients. To break down this strategy, first Smarketing Lab targets the right audience by having extensive B2B data to ensure marketing is being directed to the correct audience. Second, creating relevant content tailored to the specific client such as blogs, ads, posts, webpages, and images. Repetitive connections are also important. By setting up appointments with clients and connecting through social media, this allows Smarketing Lab to develop and form better connections, ultimately leading to better engagement and sales. Finally relentless follow-up to ensure that there is an ongoing relationship with the client and services continue through automation.
This B2B marketing strategy was one of the key learnings I took away from my time interning with Smarketing Lab. Their untraditional approach to marketing makes their services exciting and provides new opportunities for B2B marketing that reflects how marketing is constantly changing in the modern world. As someone who didn’t have substantial experience with business or marketing before interning with Smarketing Lab, I feel that hands-on experience at my internship has been the best way to learn the inner workings of business and marketing. Particularly, interning with Smarketing Lab was interesting due to the fact they have such a wide range of clientele and therefore, there was a need to tailor projects to different clients, but I discovered that you can use similar marketing projects for clients in completely different fields.
Over my time interning with Smarketing Lab, I was able to produce work on projects for two clients. My first project included creating social media reports and competitions for a football club. My second project was for an electronic contract manufacturer and consisted of designing a newsletter to be sent out via 24 emails and I then set up and designed LinkedIn posts to be sent out via my clients LinkedIn account over coming months. These clients are in significantly different fields, so it was interesting to complete and develop marketing projects for them. From these projects I gained skills in using Excel, Word, LinkedIn and Radaar.io. As someone that was not that familiar with LinkedIn and Radaar.io, developing skills in these programs was ideal as I can now carry these skills into future projects. Importantly, using these different platforms to develop projects allowed me to explore different ways to create relevant content for a variety of clients.
Overall, I had a great experience interning for Smarketing Lab and this internship helped me to develop skills that I can use throughout my future career. Even though majority of work was completed from home, I got to work with a great team and supportive network, and I am incredibly grateful for the opportunities interning with Smarketing Lab has given me. If you have an interest in working in the marketing or communications field in the future, I highly recommend interning for Smarketing Lab.