I remember exactly where I was when Columbia Marketing Group called me about an interview for an internship. It was nearing the end of my winter break and I was stuck in the Dominican Republic, unable to fly home due to torrential downpour. By the time they called me, I had been waiting to leave the airport for four hours. Needless to say, a phone call for an internship wasn’t on my radar at that point. It was only a few months ago, but I look back now and I couldn’t be happier they called me in that airport.
It was clear to me from the beginning that CMG had confidence in me to complete real-world work for actual clients, and that’s something I really appreciate. I wasn’t going to be running and grabbing coffee for the team. I wrote blog posts. I helped run the CMG social media accounts. I became familiar with web analytics and wrote some digital reports. I helped on email campaigns. I even got to create and edit some web content. That’s a lot on the plate for a kid who hadn’t worked in an agency before.
Getting this full, hands-on experience from CMG really helped me grasp some of the abstract concepts I had been learning in my classes. This semester, I’ve primarily been focused on building a skillset linked to client account management and digital strategy. Learning about things like click-through rates and search engine optimization in a classroom can be confusing, so getting to apply the concepts to my internship real-time completely boosted my understanding of those concepts.
Though the foundation of digital marketing knowledge that CMG laid out for me is invaluable, my time at CMG and The Business Times Company gave me an even greater experience – working with people in an agency. Even if I were a whiz kid with all the digital advertising knowledge in the world, I still wouldn’t know how that knowledge applies in a team setting, where people are counting on you to deliver good work. CMG gave me that opportunity, and now I can be as confident as ever walking into any gig with any agency.
Heading into CMG, I was just an advertising undergrad treading water, not sure what I wanted to do or where I was going. In a few short months, I’ve developed a foundation of professional experience and digital knowledge that has launched me into a digital marketing intern role this summer at a company in London called MintTwist, and a digital strategy role with Mizzou Journalism’s MOJO Ad this fall. These are both incredible opportunities for me, and neither would have happened without my time at CMG.
Having said that, I want to thank Crystal, Jamie, J.J. and Tay for welcoming me aboard and allowing me to leave my mark on CMG. You all made it very easy for me to feel like a part of the team, and for that I am truly grateful. Whether it was talking about music, daydreaming out loud about exploring the world, or coming up with cringe-worthy text acronyms parents could use that totally don’t exist, I’ll never forget my time here! TAFNTS. (That’s all for now – talk soon.)
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