PRSSA Kent State University
In January, I found out that I had been selected to serve as the Digital Marketing Intern this summer at the Victoria’s Secret PINK Headquarters in New York City. The internship was an opportunity that I had been dreaming about since I was a little girl. The personal and professional experience I gained while in the city proved to be invaluable.
Throughout the summer, I helped support various areas of the PINK Digital Marketing Team’s email, mobile and social media strategy, execution and analytics. I provided weekly digital trend reports to leadership and patterned other brands’ digital tactics for competitive analysis. Two of my favorite responsibilities included brainstorming and curating content for PINK’s official Snapchat account. I was even given the opportunity to appear on the Snapchat to promote new products and campaigns. Working with various social media platforms allowed me to hone my creative skills and expand my knowledge about different platform functionalities, as well as analytics. I believe my biggest accomplishment was analyzing and presenting extensive research to PINK Marketing Leadership about the current video landscape to discover innovative storytelling opportunities across multiple digital platforms. It was rewarding to see how much the team valued my insight about the millennial demographic and its behavior in the video sphere.
Living in New York has also given me the confidence and motivation to tackle anything the world throws at me in the future, personally and professionally. I have learned how to problem-solve more effectively and completely depend on myself in stressful situations. Each time I got lost on the subway or had to fight off an infamous New York City cockroach, I became a stronger, more independent individual. I went into the office each day motivated and ready to learn. I also focused on cultivating genuine relationships with my supervisor and co-workers, which allowed me to gain the most out of my internship experience. I highly encourage other college students to step outside of their comfort zones and intern in an unfamiliar location. I also urge them to apply for their dream internship, no matter how competitive or intimidating it may be.
-- Victoria Manenti, Senior Public Relations Major
With all of the excitement surrounding the city’s resurgence, the Cavaliers’ world championship title and the Republican National Convention, I couldn’t have chosen a better time to intern in Cleveland. During the summer, I hoped to gain real experience with client work, determine which area of public relations I wanted to work in and grow more confident in my abilities. As one of four summer interns at Dix & Eaton, I have definitely accomplished these goals.
I was able to work with many of Dix & Eaton’s practice groups, including media relations, marketing communications, crisis communications and investor relations. I mostly worked with the media relations group, where some of my responsibilities included developing media lists, writing pitches and making follow-up contact with journalists. I also conducted daily media monitoring, drafted social media posts for Dix & Eaton’s accounts and completed various research projects.
The most exciting part of the internship was being involved with for the Republican National Convention. The RNC team helped tell Cleveland’s story to the media coming for the convention, securing 74 placements in national media as a result. In addition to other RNC-related client projects, The other interns and I also pitched more than 400 reporters from national publications, attended events hosted by the Atlantic and Politico and walked around East 4th St. to distribute business cards and flash drives to journalists. I was surprised to have such a hands-on role for the convention and was excited to make contact with prominent journalists.
My advice to future interns is to be open to any experience. Don’t say no to a project because even if it doesn’t seem important to you, it will help out an account executive down the road. Saying yes to every opportunity and always maintaining an optimistic attitude helped me to build a positive reputation among my colleagues. This is especially important in an agency environment, where you have the opportunity to work on a variety of projects. Because they trusted my abilities, they asked me to work on some really cool client work. My time at Dix & Eaton helped grow my portfolio, my professional network and my communication abilities. I am so grateful for everything I have learned here and feel well prepared for a career in public relations.
-- Hanna Moore, Senior Public Relations Major
Watch Abby Geib's video about her experience interning at Engage! Cleveland:
My internship this summer was as a digital intern with the 2016 Republican National Convention. This was the first time a Republican National Convention had a stand-alone Digital department, so being an intern in this department was a unique experience. Specifically, I worked under the Director of Content in the Digital department, so I worked closely with her to develop content for our social media platforms. Specifically, this included creating Snapchat stories, writing blog posts, filming and editing videos, drafting tweets, organizing spreadsheets and more.
This internship was unlike any other that I’ve done before because it was very hands on. One key lesson I learned from this experience is I’m capable of more than I knew. When I found out I was going to be working twelve hour days and seven days a week leading up to Convention, I found this news daunting. I thought to myself, “How am I going to survive this summer?” With the help of lots of caffeine and amazing colleagues, the experience wasn’t that painful—and actually turned out to be one of the best of my life. Although the hours were long and the sleep was little, I’m now able to say I was a member of the Digital department for the second largest media event in the world (second only to the Olympics!).
My best piece of advice for future student interns is don’t turn down internships just because they’re unpaid—sometimes these can lead to the best opportunities. Prior to my internship with the Republican National Convention, I completed two unpaid internships. Of course if an internship arises that is a great experience AND is paid then take full advantage of this opportunity, but don’t think less of yourself if you take an unpaid internship. I know I will be set up great for the future after graduation due to the connections I’ve made and lessons I’ve learned through my internships.
-- Sarah Matthews, Senior Public Relations Major