Coming back home for the summer with my first year of university finished, I knew I couldn’t just read, sunbathe and watch back to back TV-series all day. So I decided that interning for an advertising agency would be a good turn, allowing me to test if this creative field is for me and to learn new stuff all at once. After sending a rather unconventional email asking for an internship opportunity in the Strategy Department, I had the great luck of being accepted to become part of the McCann Erickson Bucharest team for two awesome months.
STRATEGIC PLANNING MIGHT JUST BE YOUR THING IF...
...you are both creative and analytical, with super-duper problem solving skills and above all highly interested in the people and the culture around you. If you have often found yourself observing what has changed in your community and trying to understand why this has happened, or if you’re curious about trends and data then you’ll find this sector exciting to work in. From identifying trends to researching brands and communication campaigns, while bringing your understanding of the target audience into the research, you will like this department especially for its ‘strategic positioning’ right in between creative and accounts.
IT’S SUCH AN INTERCONNECTED WORLD
In general, of course; in advertising, for sure; in strategy, you can bet! Be it starting from the big picture and analysing culture and consumer habits and then focusing on the brand and its competition, or going from an insight of what is the way the brand can add value to consumers and linking this to the current cultural trends, there are just so many ways you can connect cultural trends with consumer habits and your brand.
"…there are just so many ways you can connect cultural trends with consumer habits and your brand."
You will probably find that that small thing you noticed about how your friends used to customise their desktop display might come in handy and might just be that one consumer insight you need to drive your brand’s strategy.
VISUALIZE, SUMMARIZE, ORGANIZE
Whilst interning here I’ve created mood boards to understand how the competition communicate with their clients, Powerpoint presentations to summarise what similar brands were doing and territory mapping to get the gist of the position a certain brand has in comparison with its competitors. The agency would always be full of schemes, posters, working walls, springboards and maps that you could use to organise your presentations, information or data in order to visualise it and arrange it creatively. For a visual learner like me, this was pure gold!
THIS CREATIVE BUNCH OF PEOPLE...
...have been so supportive, welcoming and eager to explain to me how the agency works that the full-time two months of internship didn’t feel like going to the office, but more like working in a creative hub, because that is what it’s like working in an advertising agency after all!
After having been introduced to the way all of the departments work, who manages the accounts, who works on the strategy, and where the creative floor is, I was given my working place at the table of the strategists. From all the projects they asked me to help them with, I believe I got a good understanding of the strategic processes. Having a really cool and caring Chief Curiosity Officer who guided me all along the internship in the strategy department was extremely helpful and made me feel valued every time I did something right.
Overall, I’d say that these two months of interning for McCann Erickson Bucharest gave me a pretty good perspective on what an advertising agency looks like, the type of projects they take on, the whole process of a brief in the agency and the role and input of the strategy department.
"What impressed me most is the way they ‘fight’ for their ideas and challenge themselves constantly to improve their work…"
What impressed me most is the way they ‘fight’ for their ideas and challenge themselves constantly to improve their work in order to create better campaigns with a solid impact. They’re the kind of people you want to take your inspiration from - because they care about their work and this makes them so good!
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