We've had the absolute pleasure of having university student Lucy Meecham Jones working with us here at 10 Yetis Digital for three months over the summer. She's been working hard, gaining valuable work experience, and we've had an extra pair of hands to help us through an incredibly busy period for the agency. So as her internship draws to a close *sob* we've asked her to write a piece on what she's learnt here at 10 Yetis...
Since my time at 10 Yetis is coming to an end and I’m getting ready to go back to university, I suppose it’s an appropriate time to share what I’ve learnt from my time here. I mean, not only did I find out that milk goes in before the water or you’ll burn the coffee, it’s dawned on me that I’ve learnt so much more about the complex world of PR than I can fit into a short blog, but I’m going to give it a good crack…
So, what is PR?
Sure, I had a (very) vague idea of what PR was before I started: I had written plenty of essays discussing how PR is useful in marketing strategies, how hard could it be? In fact, I learnt pretty quickly that so much of what you read online or in print is PR generated and all this time I’d been none the wiser.
You know what, if you asked me for a perfect definition of what PR is, I could not, and still cannot give you one, but an explanation I can do. PR is about reputation, and how the public sees a person, brand or organisation, without which you cannot gain the attention of your desired target audience effectively, and we all know the world thrives on attention.
Indeed, PR is not as simple as one definition as there are a plethora of different types out there. In a fast moving digital world, particularly in a digital agency, it comes as no surprise that there is a main focus on digital PR at 10 Yetis. The aim of this is to increase website traffic through search engine optimisation (SEO), and this meant a lot of writing.
Whilst I was aware of what SEO was, I was completely clueless as to how SEO and PR were linked. The art of SEO is crucial in ensuring a website appears as high as possible on search engine results pages. So what’s the link? Well, one of the aspects that SEO focuses on is how quickly web pages load and this is improved through follow links that can be found in content written by PR teams - pretty neat if you ask me. It didn’t take me long to realise that these links are in fact a pretty big deal and, as it turns out, journalists can be pretty stingy about handing them out, but lets not get into that...
What exactly did I actually get up to?
Writing, and lots of it. I thought I knew how to write, and I did to an extent, in an academic context. Writing from a less formal perspective with fewer rules was totally new to me, and whilst I’d written the odd blog in the past, it’s fair to say I had pretty much zero experience outside the realm of essay writing.
Dipping my toes into the water, I was given the chance to apply what I knew to a 9 - 5:30 job and this took a little while to get used to (I now don’t understand why my 9am lectures once a week are SUCH a struggle). Its fair to say I can be classified under the ‘work in progress’ bracket, and I made a fair few mistakes, but learning from these and getting feedback was perhaps the most useful part of it all.
This opportunity was perfect for me. Did you know that Japan has the most vending machines in the world? Or that Kylie Jenner has 17 pictures of boats on her instagram? Unless you’ve got a lot of time on your hands you probably didn’t, and neither did I until I started here. Having written about a wide variety of things, from travelling around Japan to how to keep a conservatory warm, you name it I’m probably a bit of an expert on it by now. I mean I can even give you some pretty solid advice on which energy tariff to opt for if you really want to know. Indeed, I realised that I do actually really like writing; I mean at least it stops me talking for a good 10 minutes.
Working in an office can actually be fun!
I’ve had many jobs in my time as a student, from riding racehorses to working behind a bar, but none of them ever involved sitting in an office for eight hours a day. As a result, it’s fair to say that I had some pretty negative assumptions of working in an office, but this was soon to change.
My poorly judged misconceptions of an office work environment were squashed as soon as I walked in in my smart shirt and trousers to be greeted by my new colleagues in Christmas slippers (Paige is the BIGGEST Xmas fan!) and t-shirts.
From learning that people actually call ice pops 'tip tops' (seriously?) to tasting my first Nik Nak (not a fan), it’s fair to say I learnt a multitude of things during my time here, not just all things PR.
To sum up…
My time at 10Yetis has taught me so much, not just about the world of marketing and PR, but extending to more pressing issues concerning the working environment as a whole. I’ve met some pretty cool people and I can only say thank you so much for putting up with me, and allowing me to learn so much in such a short time (and letting me nap when it was clearly just all too much). I’m not a fan of clichés but it really has flown by.