I am actually quite surprised that more students and college graduates that major in advertising or marketing don’t use this simple technique. It’s almost ridiculous to write an article about it.
In fact of all the colleges in America, only one that I know of makes this concept a requirement for graduation. I am sure there are other colleges.
When the question comes up
As a speaker at colleges, I often talk about advertising related topics. The question comes up: “How do I get a job with no”… You know the rest of the sentence.
When this happens I pause, not to intimidate the student, but to get the attention of others who also might want to know the answer.
My answer is simple, one word. Internships.
One tenth of one percent
Throughout my twenty years in advertising, I was seldom approached about internship at my agency. Conservatively, based on all the colleges in my area, I would calculate it to be less than one tenth of one percent. Almost no one ever asked about internships.
Five simple ways to pursue an internship
- Research ten agencies within ten minutes of your home and ask if they hire interns. If yes, inquire when can I come in for an interview?
- Join professional associations. Network, network dude. If you are too shy, maybe you should think about becoming an accountant.
- Ask your college professors about local advertising firms. Many times they freelance for them or at least know the cool ones.
- Identify two or three agencies and choose their worst client. Tactfully, convince the head of the agency how you could make it better. Note: Don’t criticize – his daughter or new son-in-law may have done it.
John’s rules about getting and doing an internship.
DO NOT work for FREE. You’re not an indentured servant. You’re part of the staff, Min wage is OK
Work your booty off even if it’s just twelve weeks. This is work; get your assignments done on time.
Be a total sponge; absorb everything you can from everyone around you. Ask questions, be interested.
Show up on time, or better start 15 mins earlier. No BS excuses about your car. Walk, or run to get there!
Most important when it’s over, ask for a referral. You’d be surprised who they might know.