As my first year of university ended and summer began, I applied for an internship position at BrandPie, a branding agency in King’s Cross, London. At the time I had no idea of what a branding agency actually was. All I knew was that it was creative and so I thought I’d give it a go. After a positive interview I was offered seven weeks there and I caught the tube to King’s Cross to get started.
As soon as I arrived I was given a few things to get working on, which was already a nice change from past work experience, where I sometimes had nothing to do and felt like a bit of a burden on the employees rather than being there to help. I also had a meeting where the agency’s work was explained to me in a bit more detail. BrandPie helps organisations to tell their story and work out a Purpose – that is to say, the reason why they exist – in order to connect more to both employees and customers.
The first task I was given tested my ability to edit and rework a write-up of a breakfast event that BrandPie had hosted the week before my arrival. I found this quite hard at first since it was tricky to see where I had to draw the line between completely rewriting and keeping a majority of the original text, but I found it really interesting to read about the idea of Purpose in a branding context – the topic of discussion at the breakfast and something BrandPie believes is very important – and put my own spin on the write-up.
While working on this I quickly became adjusted to the atmosphere in the office. My expectation had been a reserved, semi-silent environment similar to what I’ve experienced in the past, so I was glad to find that the office is full of creativity, jokes and the occasional bursts of singing.
What I’ve learned
Over the next week, my work on the rewrite was rewarded with a few other tasks from different projects and soon I felt like I had a better idea of what BrandPie does and the kind of clients they take on. It turns out that branding is actually quite important. It takes a lot more work than I’d expected; projects can last months on end and can require a decent-sized team of creative talent to get a good result.
From what I’ve seen, I think the key to success in branding is perseverance and versatility. The team can come up with dozens of amazing concepts for one project and potentially none of them will be used by the client. It takes a lot of work to get something that’s perfect. It’s impressive that the people here are able to think of so many different, amazingly creative ways to interpret a brand, and even more impressive that this hasn’t driven them insane yet.
Not completely insane, anyway.
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