Ed. note: Rami Tai joined HZ as an intern on the Social team during his semester abroad from university in his native Australia. During his time here, he taught us the joys of Vegemite and reminded us about the power of enthusiasm and the importance of making friends wherever you go. We like to think he learned a few things, too. Here are Rami’s top takeaways to share with other would-be agency interns and college grads with their eye on the advertising field.
Asking questions is smart.
You don’t know everything, and although having to admit it is intimidating, it is okay—even encouraged. Saying “I’m not sure” or “I don’t know” leaves space for you to keep learning, and allows for better interaction with co-workers. At an agency, the work between departments is tightly integrated, so being open and earnest goes a long way.
Advertising is casually intense.
Bright orange lounge chairs, meeting rooms with funky names… the cool vibes and casual atmosphere at HZ totally changed my impression of what a "real job" can be. It wasn’t unusual to walk past people laughing during a “serious” meeting. But don’t let the lax dress code and free beer fool you: While I found HZers to be fun and easygoing, they have equally full, wonderfully imaginative brains and strong work ethics.
Social media marketing is more than how many “likes” you get.
Organic or paid? Morning or afternoon? What’s the hook? What words will capture the audience’s attention? SEM, SEO, PPC… what are these acronyms? The strategy that goes into each and every post for a client’s social media account is CRAZY. For my Instagram (follow me: @himynameisrami), I choose a picture that I look good in and write a funny description. For a client, the process is a bit more rigorous: collaborative objective-setting by the client and strategy teams, message development, image curation and editing, copywriting, timing… not to mention analytic considerations like engagement and reach.
So the next time you see an advert on Instagram or Facebook, give it a like. A lot of work probably went into it!
Being creative is appreciated here.
High school and college can feel like a stringent system, with little room to be creative. At an agency, the innovative possibilities feel endless. Having crazy thoughts? Think you’re quirky? See things differently than those around you? Good! These are the qualities that will make you successful at a creative agency. If you're a funky individual, you will rock it.
You have a lot more to learn.
The business world is so much larger than I ever imagined. There are so many aspects to the advertising industry, so many different roles, so much to learn!
Intimidating? Yes. Exciting? Absolutely. Getting out of your comfort zone, meeting new people, and learning about things you didn’t even know were possible are ideas that should motivate us all. Thanks to HZ, I have learned this valuable lesson. I’ve increased my appetite for education, success, new experiences, and ultimately my drive to attain happiness in everything I do.
I am looking forward to coming back to the states and working at an agency like HZ (or, hey... HZ!) after college.
Until then, I encourage everyone to stay creative.