- by Joanna
5 Key Lessons From Being An Intern At Reflect Digital
They say time flies when you’re having fun, and my internship with Reflect Digital has flown by. It doesn’t feel like five weeks since walking through the front doors of the office, being welcomed by Harry, the office dog, jumping up to say hello. I feel like I have learnt so much about working in digital marketing, developed a number of key skills and got to work with a fantastic group of people.
Since September, I have been based in Aberdeen studying an MSc in Digital Marketing at Robert Gordon University. The programme has enabled me to learn and build experience, in many different facets of digital marketing, including more technical aspects, such as HTML and CSS, but also about SEO, Google Analytics, and how to construct an effective digital strategy. The University gave me the option to spend a month doing a work placement, fortunately for me, after meeting Becky and Paul at the office in Maidstone, they agreed to host my placement.
Despite the masters programme being very vocationally focused, I still lacked real, practical experience working in a digital marketing agency. I was drawn in by Reflect Digital’s position as a thought leader in the area of gamification and also the fact that there was the option to work a four day week. It has been a real pleasure spending a month at Reflect, and this blog will cover the five key lessons I’ve learned since being here.
The Power of Gamification
Prior to the placement, I had heard of gamification in passing but didn’t really understand the full potential that it offers to marketers. Throughout the month, I assisted with the PR and outreach for several of the gamification campaigns, as well as learning more about gamification from talks by Reflect Digital’s CEO, Becky, and by writing blogs about the subject.
From a range of campaigns that Reflect have worked on, it is clear that gamification, if executed properly, can be really influential in achieving a number of business and marketing objectives. Gamification provides a unique way of triggering the innate behaviours of humans to challenge, compete and be rewarded. This can then be used to in achieving objectives such as building engagement and brand awareness right through to collecting GDPR compliant data and link building for SEO.
It was fantastic to deepen my knowledge about this exciting and innovative area of marketing, and I can’t wait to see what future games Reflect create.
The Importance of a Positive Workplace Culture
My previous experience has led me to work in a number of different work environments, and I can safely say that Reflect has the most positive workplace culture I have experienced. As a rule, I feel that every office should have an office dog. It changes everything.
The emphasis on having a work-life balance is most obviously reflected in the four day work week. For a digital marketing agency, the four-day work week makes perfect sense. Working an extra couple of hours over 4 days, knowing that you have a three day weekend makes such a difference. Their statistics that show that productivity has increased, clearly means they are onto something.
The positive workplace culture is also reflected in everything Reflect does, as a company from organising networking events, working with clients and pulling together to ensure positive results for clients.
Content Writing for SEO
Throughout the month, I have been given comprehensive SEO and copywriting training by Frankie. The training covered different aspects of SEO including on-page optimisation, technical SEO and the importance of mobile, which has been really useful for my own personal development.
My background has meant that I am very experienced in writing for academia, but less so in producing keyword optimised content in the form of blogs and website content. I got the opportunity to conduct keyword research, brainstorm blog ideas and write content for the Reflect website and for a number of clients. This was a real learning curve but I really enjoyed the process and I am really pleased with the finished results.
Producing Copy for PPC Campaigns
Alongside SEO training, I also had the chance to experience the other side of search marketing, Pay Per Click (PPC). Rob, who is a PPC Ninja, took me through extensive Google AdWords training which built on my existing experience from doing the Google AdWords Certification. This included learning about the interface, different bidding strategies, and what different types of PPC advertising are available to marketers across the web.
Over the past two weeks, I worked on producing Ad copy for a number of campaigns, which provided me with the opportunity to use what I had learnt in theory and put it into practice. It turns out that my excel knowledge is definitely sub-par. A definite area of self-improvement for the future.
PR and Outreach
At various points throughout the month, I was tasked with helping Joanna with a number of outreach and PR tasks. This largely included contacting bloggers and influencers to support the gamification campaigns, and also sourcing potential valuable links for clients. A personal highlight was getting the Arsenal ‘Find 30’ quiz featured on Planet Football website.
Overall, it was a pleasure to spend a month at Reflect Digital in such a positive working environment and working alongside an incredibly supportive team. I feel like the experience has really deepened my knowledge and practical skill-set in a number of different areas. I’m really excited to see the continued growth of Reflect Digital!