You know that phrase that you hear over and over again from the time you take your first class in College to the day you graduate, “Sell yourself.” Well lucky for me I was able to sell myself this past weekend.
Before the fact:
After hours in the Raleigh Durham Airport, an hour and a half plane ride, I was finally there. I was in New York City ready to sell myself. I arrived on a Thursday and had two interviews the following day for two separate companies, talk about a lot of walking! I made sure to prepare for both of these as well as I could. Some of the things I did to prepare, and I would recommend to many students to do before an interview, specifically in the Marketing/Advertising industry are as follows:
- Make sure to print your resume, writing samples, and any other references you may have gathered over the years
- Make sure you are up to date on current events and industry’s trades. For example for the industry in which I am hoping to work I looked over Advertising Age, Ad Week, and even browsed the general news sources such as The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal
- Thirdly, make sure you come up with some great questions to ask your interviewer. On this specific occasion I was prepared with questions and I think it really helped me!
- Lastly, make sure you have researched the company and know what they do and who their clients or affiliates are. This is very important because you can’t sell your product if you don’t know what it is!
After doing all four steps I was ready for my interviews. My first interview was at Scripps Networks Interactive for a Sales Intern position in their Travel Channel brand. I was so excited to be returning to a place that I loved (I had interned for Scripps Networks Interactive last summer in their Marketing department for The Food Network brand). And my second would be with Universal McCann or UM, an advertising agency.
The conversation was great. I was able to talk about Sales and the classes I took at Elon. If I could recommend a few classes for students to take, if you are studying Marketing or Sales, would be: Professional Selling and Integrated Marketing Communications. The two classes combined are a lethal combination. Professional Selling gives you the edge and skills you need to sell yourself and the confidence to speak eloquently, while Integrated Marketing Communications teaches you the tricks of the trades and the ideas behind the tactics used. The two classes together helped me prepare tremendously for both interviews.
After I was done with both interviews I realized that I had a lot to do still. Your interview is not over once you leave the building. You still want to maintain a relationship with the employer and for that reason you need to make sure to send a follow-up email. Make sure you are professional in your email and thank them for their time. They spent the time to get to know you better and give you a chance to learn, so make sure you are grateful for that.
The follow-up is something that I find to be one of the most important phases of the interviewing process. No follow up could mean what the common phrase means, “Out of Sight Out of Mind.” You want to make sure you are leaving a sweet taste in their mouth if you will.
After all of the traveling and interviewing it was time to return to school and focus on learning the most I could and to take back what I had learned through this experience.
Thanks so much for reading!
This post is a result of an Elon University class Assignment.