A Journey Through My SEO Internship Experience

Hi! My name is Lia Barteet and I am a Senior here at Temple in Philadelphia, PA. As a transfer student I started my academic journey at Temple University last spring. Although I was a Junior I didn’t feel I was ready for an internship so I worked hard in my advertising classes, participated in Temple’s student run agency, Allotrope, while attending Temple Advertising Club meetings, and finally attended Klein’s virtual career fair. At the virtual career fair I met Ann Gray. I ended up getting an interview with Harmelin Media and was offered an internship on their Search Engine Optimization (SEO) team. 

I have learned so much about myself and the advertising industry through this internship experience and I’m excited to share some of what I’ve learned with you. 

What I’ve learned working on the SEO team at Harmelin Media

First off I’ve learned beyond the surface level of what Search Engine Optimization entails, I’ve learned about keyword research, onsite optimization, link building and understanding all the aspects of driving organic traffic to websites (all these things I never thought I would ever truly understand). I’ve gotten practice in data analysis and learned how to assess the success of SEO strategies I’ve worked on. 

Speciality area I didn’t know about before that I’m determined to pursue now

During this internship one of my assignments was to use the software Semrush to crawl websites to perform website audits, improve their visibility in search, and fix errors in titles and links. I had so much fun running the Semrush software and realized I’m really into technical SEO because it uses my skills of problem solving and analytical thinking. 

Inspiring people at Harmelin Media

My internship manager, Heather Shields, was influential in making this internship such a special, rewarding and fun experience. On my internship days I got to meet with her remotely or in person where we discussed some of the projects she was working on and to go over past and present assignments for me. Heather has become an inspiration to me because when you meet her you can tell she really loves what she does. She showed me support and understanding when I needed it (because let’s face it being a college student can be so. hard.) and she was always willing to spend extra time with me if I had questions or wasn’t completely understanding something. 

Heather was one of many inspiring people I met at this internship. One thing I really love about Harmelin is they treat their employees very well, most of the people I worked with on the SEO and Media Planning team had worked there for 10+ years. 

Specific things I gained from this experience 

Besides expanding my knowledge and technical skills in search engine optimization, I got experience with communicating professionally by sending and receiving professional and work related emails, instant messaging on Microsoft Teams, and video calls. I gained invaluable time management skills as this was a hybrid internship, sometimes I worked remotely and had to stay on top of assignments on my own. This was my first time working on a team outside of school, this experience was invaluable to me as I learned how tasks are delegated based on the workloads of others on the team.

Advice for others who may beginning their first internship 

My first internship was a step out of my comfort zone and it probably will be for you to. With a lot of new challenges it’s ok to make mistakes as long as you learn from them. From my experience it’s especially important you are proactive by asking for help when you need it and communicating about your workload with your manager. If you have the opportunity to go into the office, talk to people that aren’t necessarily on your team and make connections with them. 

One comment

  1. Hey Lia! Super awesome to read about your SEO internship. As someone who’s looking to try and work in SEO at some point before I graduate, your experience gained from this internship alone was very insightful! It helped me paint a picture of what a potential SEO internship could look like, so thank you! I wish you the best of luck post-Grad!

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