Kirby Wallace: 22Squared
PRCM Major Kirby Wallace at 22Squared
I spent my summer working as a Media Intern at an advertising agency called 22Squared. This agency is headquartered in Atlanta but I worked at the Tampa, FL location.
My biggest assignment for the summer was working on the team intern project. I worked alongside five interns who all performed different roles in the project such as creative, copyright, strategy and in my case media. We acted as our own mini-agency. 22Squared gave us the opportunity to work on a topic related to one of their biggest clients (name is confidential). We we're given the task to get people in our generation to use this company's rewards program. We had a hypothetical budget to work with to execute our campaign. My responsibilities for the project included creating a media plan and budget. I had to do extensive research on what channels to use to best target our desired audience. In addition to my media sector I did production where I figured out how many days our campaign would need to be shot, what photographer to use and even how much a hand model would cost. As a group we met constantly to brainstorm the creative concept and what we wanted our campaign to communicate. It was wild to see how many times we decided to change our campaign's slogan and look over the course of the summer until the final product came to life. At the end of the summer we gave a presentation to the entire agency about our campaign. The coolest part of this project is that it could actually be produced by the company in real life (hence the confidentiality). As a result, we treated this presentation like a real pitch. Seeing this project come to life and finally presenting the final deck was a very rewarding experience.
Beyond this project, I shadowed many meetings and had a few research assignments for a banking client. I became well-versed in Excel and a research tool called Simmons. I definitely became much more comfortable with analyzing data because I usually shy-away from number-oriented tasks.
The best thing I ever did was making a point to shadow many different departments within the agency. I am not a numbers person so at first my internship's department revolving around math and data was overwhelming. Being a PR major I had no classes that prepared me for this industry. I got the hang of how to understand my role overtime but I quickly realized it was not a lifelong passion for me. The whole reason you intern is to figure out what you do and don't like so don’t expect to find your perfect job on the first try. I wanted to take advantage of being at such a great agency by learning about other departments that may be a better fit for me in the future. I shadowed social media, production, account management and new business. I not only met so many more people throughout this process but also found out what departments I could see myself enjoying more. If your internship role is not exactly what you love doing...explore! Every employee is more than happy to sit down with you for a few minutes to explain their job or let you shadow them for a day. Put yourself out there! I think a lot of interns feel like they are a burden but everyone loves helping interns. This is the time to take advantage of being the new kid on the block and ask an insane amount of questions. It’s also okay to have no clue what you are doing a majority of the time. A lot of my role was way over my head and outside of my knowledge base but I constantly asked questions to anyone and everyone. If you ask questions it shows that you care and want to do a good job which people take notice of.
Another piece of advice I have is don’t let the process of getting an internship intimidate you. I got my internship at a very competitive agency not being an advertising major and having no real-life agency experience previously. Use the interview to sell yourself. I really believe a company wants to hire a person not just their resume. Don’t be afraid to apply and put yourself out there for companies and internships that may seem outside of your bubble. If you want is badly enough a company will see that!
The most important thing I learned is that going to the extra mile does pay off. I definitely had a learning curve at the beginning of this summer having never worked full-time before. It's a hard adjustment to go from college to the corporate, office world. I quickly learned that doing the bare-minimum does not get you anywhere. My company and many others treat their interns like employees so you need to live up to that standard. Yes, they really do notice if you come in early/stay late, take on extra work or go above and beyond in anyway. For example, regarding our intern project, I did many jobs that were not related to my job description or role. My bosses really took notice of that and I think it was the time I impressed them most this summer.
So in summation, ask questions, explore, do more and try to have some fun while figuring out what life is like in the "real world!"
Last Updated: July 26, 2018