When I first arrived at college, I came in with zero experience in the marketing field like many other students. Naturally, I worried over how I can gain experience when jobs require you to already have skills and previous experience. What many people don’t realize is that you don’t necessarily need to have an official paying job to gain experience. There are many other ways that you can get started in the marketing industry- or any industry, really. The important thing is that you don’t waste your days doing nothing but stay as active as possible when it comes to learning new skills. Think it’s hard to get a job as a college freshman? No one expects you to have much experience when you are that young. The truth is, it will only get harder as you get older. Your peers will without a doubt gain diverse skills and experiences throughout their college careers so it is up to you to keep up with your competition. If you don’t have any work experience yet in the marketing field, don’t fret! Just keep reading to learn how to build your resume.
1. Get involved at your school.
What you do in your spare time outside of studying matters more than you think. If you
join a school organization, you can get help out by offering to create marketing materials for the club’s events. For example, you can design the flyers or maintain the club’s Facebook page. This will allow you to gain experience in designing and social media marketing. Another benefit of making the posters is that you can get comfortable using software such as Photoshop, which is a valuable skill to have as a digital marketer. If the marketing team is already filled, you may be able to help plan one of the club’s events as well as take part in developing creative marketing campaigns for the events. Being able to collaborate in teams to come up with creative solutions is an important skill that marketers should have.
2. Offer to assist a local business in its marketing efforts.
Outside of school, you can also offer free marketing services to local businesses, especially restaurants. If you are currently working at a small restaurant, your manager may be willing to let you manage the restaurant’s Facebook page. Many small restaurants sometimes do not even have Facebook pages set up. As someone who is passionate about marketing, you should know that a good online presence is very important to all businesses! You can propose your marketing plans to your manager through a brief presentation backed up with relevant quantitative data. If your manager is unsure, you can offer to have your posts approved by the manager prior to posting. You can also help manage Yelp reviews for the restaurant by preparing responses to each customer review and then submitting them to the manager to approve and post. Overall, you will be able to learn a little about managing a brand image and maintaining positive relations with customers.
3. Start and maintain a marketing industry blog.
This is one of the easiest steps that you can take to build your marketing resume. Through the blog, you can show your interest and knowledge on the marketing industry as well as prove your writing skills. Additionally, blogging is a great skill to have for digital marketers and those in PR. What is great about blogging is that you can also learn about yourself as a marketer. You will be able to know what you like or dislike about the different aspects of marketing, the specific career path you’d like to pursue, and maybe even the specific firm you want to have your dream job at. If you were required to create a blog for a journalism course at your school, you can use that as well! Who says you have to quit blogging once the course is over? I encourage you to continue writing for that blog if it is related to the job you’d like. If you are not sure what specific direction you’d like to go with your blog, think about what the hiring manager would like to read on your blog or what kind of person the hiring manager is looking for. Then, simply make sure that your blog showcases those qualities in the content!
As an inexperienced college student, it is easy to stress out about your lack of skills. However, there are so many ways that you can get started building your resume! As I mentioned above, you can join the marketing team for a school organization, become a marketer for a local business, and blog about the marketing industry. There are so many other ways that you can build experience that I could not fit into this blog post without the post getting too long. If you’d like more information, you can read this article here. Also, note that for job postings, the qualifications listed aren’t necessarily required. Many people don’t know that they don’t actually need to be completely 100% qualified to apply. Therefore, make sure to continue to apply to jobs even if you don’t think you might not be the perfect candidate. After all, soft skills are just as important as the technical skills that come with field experience. If you think positively and stay active, you will surely build your resume to land your first internship or job. Don’t give up!