5 Things I Learned from Marketing in the Real World

Posted on August 17, 2012 by bevelwise

5 Things I Learned from Marketing in the Real World

I asked to do today’s blog post because I wanted to share some thoughts on my first “big girl” job out of college. Yes... today is my last “official” day as a member of the Bevelwise team, which still hasn’t hit me just yet!

My time at Bevelwise has been priceless, and despite previous internships and part-time jobs, it was my first step into the “real world”. You know, that first time when you realize there’s no more semesters, no more grades and that Thursdays are indeed not part of the weekend.

Thanks to the wonders of the internet and my next role being virtual, I’ll still be working with Bevelwise part-time during some transition periods, so we don’t have to officially say good-bye just yet. I chose to follow a path that would lead me to the East side of the state because a certain important person is over there, and let’s face it, we were tired of driving!

What I Learned from the Real World

Since I’m sure there are plenty of other people out there getting ready to embark upon their own professional careers in marketing (or any industry for that matter), I thought it would be nice to wrap up some thoughts and takeaways from what I learned in the past year and a half. What I’ve learned extends way beyond this of course, but I will try to boil it down to 5 things.

You don’t get a syllabus anymore

Syllabus day was always kind of a joke, a day taken for granted. But just like how you ask yourself why you never took advantage of those naps in kindergarten, you never want to take advantage of a syllabus either. It’s so simple. It tells you exactly what to do if you want to be successful. You’ll quickly learn that you don’t get a cheat sheet on how to succeed in the real world, and it’s up to you to determine what’s required of yourself if you want to get where you want to go. And you aren’t just working for your own grade anymore; you’re working for a whole team of peoples’ success. Oh, and you don’t get a fresh start every 4 months either!

Papers really aren’t that bad

I can’t tell you the number of times I heard, “You’re so lucky that you don’t have to write papers anymore!” from friends that were still taking classes. It always made me laugh, because papers really aren’t that bad. We’ve all done the tricks a time or two… procrastinate until an all-nighter, add ample amounts of “fluff” or change the formatting to make it longer without actually writing more. (Well, I mean I’ve certainly never done any of that… it’s just what I hear.)

But after college you’re not writing for a professor anymore, you’re writing for a client. There are infinite more eyeballs on your words, and with that extra attention comes some extra pressure. However, you get to see your content come to life on the internet and drive results. As part of the online media team, I was very involved in creating content that would positively impact our clients through SEO, PPC and social media marketing as a whole. Whether it be a press release, email blast, case study, landing page, blog post or social media content, there was always something new and different to be writing.

Time is money

I’ll keep this post to a one cliché maximum, but time really is money, especially at an agency or firm. You sell your time, so every minute of your day is billed to someone else. Whether it’s your company or the client, your time has a price tag and it’s important to efficiently show return on it. Make sure every minute is worth what it costs!

Wheels on chairs are key

While we may not realize it, I think the wheels on our chairs could be one of the biggest assets at Bevelwise. Between the online media, development, design and sales teams, everything that we do affects every department. Communicating and making sure that everyone is on the same page and that their piece of the puzzle is in place is essential.

Luckily, Bevelwise has a very free-flowing workspace (thanks, Bold Furniture), and it’s not uncommon for someone to be wheeled over to another team member’s desk asking a question or discussing a detail about a project. Staying confined to a three-walled cube would do a real disservice to the communication between teams.

You are the expert

The world of online media is vast and ever-changing. Each member of the online media team at Bevelwise specializes in a slightly different role, and it’s up to that person to be the expert on the ins-and-outs of that niche. Every niche influences the rest (as David demonstrated so nicely in “How SEO, PPC and Social Influence each other for success”) so it’s important to have an expert for each.

However, being an expert doesn’t mean that you will always immediately have the answer to every question that comes your way. But It does mean that you will seek out the info you need (articles, blog posts, media reps, case studies, demos…anything and everything) and educate yourself until you have the answer. Anything can be thrown your way, so we never stop learning and growing.

I think it’s safe to say that no two days of mine were the same here at Bevelwise. These 5 points barely touch the tip of the iceberg of the experiences I’ve had, but you can begin to see the foundation that it has instilled in me. I’m thankful to have joined such a great team for my first step into the real world.

Learn something from your first job that you’ve always taken with you? Share it in the comments!