If you’re not familiar with our team, an interesting fact about us is that MOST of us do not have marketing backgrounds. (In all reality, only a few of us are actually working in the field in which we studied – I am not). When I interviewed to work for High Road, I was scared, but I also enjoy a challenge. There are some things that I have had to learn throughout my time here, and had I known them before, I probably wouldn’t have pulled so much hair out in the beginning.
1. It is HARD to sell an intangible product.
We aren’t selling things you can hand to a client and they can touch, taste, or see what you’re currently selling. This field is for selling trust. You have to be able to sell your relationship and honesty to a client. And then deliver.
2. This is NOT a 9-5 job.
If your clients are awake and needing something, it is your responsibility to do your best to (at the very least) let them know you are listening. You may not be able to accomplish the task or help the situation until the next business day, but they work with you for a reason. Be there for them. (Weekends included).
3. You need to learn a lot about a lot of different industries.
We work with everyone from defense contractors to tourism to car dealers. We have to know target markets, ideal clientele, personalities, and industry-specific requirements in order to properly serve each and every one of our clients to the highest level expected.
4. Your workmates become your family.
I mean this one. In most careers, you’ll have this experience, but we all work so closely together always. We probably spend more time together than we do our own families. We fight like brothers and sisters, but we also protect each other like parents and always make sure we have each other’s best interests at heart.
5. Creativity is subjective.
There will always be someone who doesn’t like the work you produce – but, that doesn’t mean you did it wrong. We are constantly having to re-do, re-try, or re-design our work because it either doesn’t pass the initial clearance before leaving the office or our clients want us to try something different. That’s okay! They make awards for amazing ideas that never got used. (We have one)
6. It is incredibly rewarding.
Driving down the road and seeing a billboard you know someone in your team designed or seeing a commercial that your work mate shot, edited, and produced is incredibly satisfying. People start to recognize you and your brand and associate you with a successful business.
7. It is an ever-changing industry.
In marketing, especially in this incredibly booming digital age, the platforms, ideas, and ways of doing things are ALWAYS changing. For example, I, personally, work A LOT in the back end of Facebook and there is not a single week that goes by where I don’t have to re-learn how to do what I am so used to doing because Facebook is constantly updating its advertising platform, policies, and ad requirements/restrictions.
8. You don’t just have one job.
“YOU HAD ONE JOB”….how many times have we all said that? In this industry – never. My job description, currently, is “D. All of the Above”. Our graphic designers run Facebook campaigns, I design things sometimes, our Director of Digital Operations sells things, etc. We have to be ready to mold and shape into all positions so that the boat sails smoothly. It’s fun learning new things, though.
9. You’re not going to make everyone happy.
And that’s okay! Going back to number 5 – not everyone is going to like you or your work. That’s okay! If you find a client relationship not fitting, that’s okay. It is more rewarding to find the clients you work with the best and understand each other. Don’t stick around or with a client just because they’re paying. If the relationship isn’t there – don’t force it. And I’ll say it again – that’s okay!
10. Explaining what you do is hard.
My last blog was explaining a little bit about what all we do at High Road. It is difficult to explain to people in a nutshell exactly what all you do for a living. “Working for a marketing company” doesn’t work. They don’t understand just how in-depth your job really is. Find the things you like most about your career and talk about them. I tell people “we literally do everything”. No, but seriously.
Overall, this industry is incredibly rewarding and I am incredibly proud of all of the work our company puts out. I am thankful someone was willing to take a risk on me and I was willing to take a risk to jump into a career I really didn’t know anything about. My favorite quote from my interview was “You can sell a jar of salsa…or you can sell something meaningful”. I’m glad I took the meaningful route.
If you want to know what else I wish I knew 3 years ago or if you want to chat about any of the 10 I have listed, don’t hesitate to reach out to me. Chelsea@thehighroadagency.com