Interning at a Small Business
My names is Sean Bennett and I attend Temple University as an advertising and media planning student in the Klein College of Media and Communication. During the past two months, I’ve been interning in the advertising and marketing department at BQ Basement Systems and Concrete Repair in Erdenheim, PA. When I first began searching for an internship within advertising and marketing, I did not know wanted to do. Do I take a position at an ad agency? Is it better to gain experience in a large company or with a smaller one? What position or role would put me on the best path for success later down the road? I wanted to gain the most experience in various fields within advertising and not limit myself to one aspect or role within the industry. For that reason, I decided to take a position at a family owned and operated business. This would allow me to be immersed in all aspects of advertising and marketing and see how the entire department is operated. Little did I know, it was the best place I could have gained experience.
From the beginning of the internship the Marketing Manager and head of the department told me that she wanted me to be immersed in all things advertising and marketing. With a team of four people in the department, no one person had a specific task. I built, negotiated and managed print campaigns in emerging markets. I planned and attended various networking events and home shows. I designed and reworked ads as a creative and built content on our website and helped optimize our reach online. I learned how to manage and produce ads for various Facebook campaigns. These are just a few tasks on my ever expanding list that grows every day. I like to think that the experience I gained working for a small business allowed me to be immersed in things that never would have been possible if I took a job at a large agency or company. Looking back my decision to forgo an agency or large company was the right decision. I learned not only what I liked to do within advertising and marketing, but more importantly, what I don’t like to do. So the next time you are debating where to intern just remember that the experience you can gain in a small company may be greater than the experience you may gain in a large agency or company. I don’t know where I will end up after graduation, but my experience with BQ Basement Systems will help path the way to my career.
Hey Sean! I also wondered if it was better to go client side vs agency. What are some aspects of client side advertising that you enjoyed during your internship?