Wondering how to transition from classes to a career? Making the jump can be tricky, so here are some networking strategies you can use to find your new life in advertising.
Go to events.
I found out about Bozell’s internship program at Meet the Pros. The two-day conference had speakers, agency tours, portfolio reviews and, of course, professionals who have been there and done that. Networking doesn’t have to be intimidating here. At conferences and events, people are looking to make new connections. During a break, try to strike up a conversation with a speaker. That’s how I met Bailey, a copywriter from Bozell. She encouraged me to apply, and I was so excited to see her again at my interview. Events are a wonderful way to meet people who are looking to connect. So take advantage!
Follow people in your industry.
I actually didn’t know that Meet the Pros was happening until the morning of the event. I was following a creative director on Twitter, and he tweeted about the conference. I quickly drove over to the location and jumped right in. So find people on Twitter and LinkedIn who already have jobs in your field. Then comes the next step …
Ask for an informational interview.
Want to get the inside scoop before you apply for jobs? Try an informational interview. I asked a friend of a friend who works at Secret Penguin if I could grab lunch with her for an informational interview. Informational interviews are a lowkey way to get info about companies before you apply. It helps if you prepare a bunch of questions beforehand. Like, what’s a typical day like? How did you get your start in your career? What’s the most challenging part of your job?
It’s not a bad idea to take notes so you can remember what they said. Be sure to send them a thank you note for taking the time to meet with you – preferably hand-written.
And that’s it! Hopefully these strategies give you an idea of how to network. Now go out and make new professional connections!