Lauren: 3 Days, 6 Agencies

Whew! I just spent my spring break traveling around New York City, getting a behind-the-scenes, inside look at some of the top advertising agencies in the Big Apple.  We saw everything: traditional agencies, digital agencies, media agencies and even some NON advertising agencies. It was an awesome experience to visit these great companies, and I can’t wait to tell you all about them!

nyc-trips

Google: 

Obviously, Google’s office in NYC is absolutely amazing!  They have game rooms, multiple cafeterias (with a food truck INSIDE the building) and these awesome treadmills so employees can complete their work while walking and exercising. While Google isn’t really an advertising agency, they still have creative designers, strategists and marketing people, just like any agency.  Their work focuses on the cross between technology and creativity.

During their presentation, they showed us a video from Google Creative Lab’s Robert Wong about the Future of Storytelling, which inspired me, and the rest of the students, to remember that advertising, and communication in general, is all about telling a story. And even though we grow older, people still enjoy hearing stories, just like they did as children.

R/GA:

This advertising agency has an interesting history.  Founded in 1977 by two brothers, R/GA was originally a design agency that focused on video production, motion-graphics and live-action film.  Back in the day, they were most famously known for working on the  opening title sequence of the 1978 movie Superman.  Since then, the company has transitioned into an advertising agency with a digital focus and an emphasis on product innovation.

R/GA has produced some really amazing work, like Nike’s FuelBand, Windows Time Square Takeover, and the Dr. Dre Beats commercials.  The biggest take-away I got from our time visiting this agency was that everything is incredibly fast-paced in agency life, especially compared to the work pace in the classroom.  Instead of having a month to work on a project, deliverables get produced in a matter of weeks in ad agencies! While that might seem intimidating to some students, I find it incredibly exhilarating!

Publicis Kaplan Thaler:

This agency is filled with BU alumni (how awesome is that?) and is run by two incredible ladies, (girl power!) CEO and Chief Creative Officer Linda Kaplan Thaler and President Robin Koval (who together, published a book called The Power of Nice: How to Conquer the Business World With Kindness). They have some pretty incredible work, like Crest and Oral-B, the Aflac Duck, Wendy’s, Charmin’s Sit or Squat app and CitiBank’s CitiBike.

During the tour, we had a Q&A session with recent alumni, who discussed the differences between school projects and life in the real-world (longer hours and more pressure were the most popular differences).  They also talked about how to adjust to agency life.  It was so helpful to get a firsthand look from people who were in my shoes just under a year ago!

Grey:

Grey, the agency behind the eTrade Baby, the infamous Cialis commercials, and Easy, Breezy, Beautiful CoverGirl, won AdAge’s prestigious “Agency of the Year,” a really incredible feat considering all the amazing agencies out there. Grey focuses on creating work that is both famous & effective, and they’ve succeed with some of their brilliant commercials and print advertisements.

What I learned at Grey was something really interesting about being in an account role.  It’s almost like being a point guard, because your job is to provide scoring opportunities for your team.  I think that’s a really great, inspiring way to look at the account management side of advertising. We also learned about the importance of having impressive presentation skills. Grey got me really inspired to work in the field.

Firstborn:

This small shop (around 100 people) has gained some traction with their work for Uniqlo (on Pinterest) and Rolex.  The president of Firstborn (a BU graduate) has helped this agency grow into a business that produces some creative, out-of-the-box and award-winning work.

firstborn

The most important thing I learned while chatting with the sharp minds at Firstborn was that creativity can come from anywhere. Creative ideas don’t just come from copywriters, art directors or designers. They can come from anyone who is passionate about the project. Their emphasis on collaboration and teamwork definitely showed me the perks and advantages of working for a smaller agency.

Giant Spoon: 

Giant Spoon is a start-up founded by some of the former senior team members of Omnicom’s OMD unit (aka some BU COM alumni!). This media agency “humanizes” media buying, and comes up with ideas that attract advertisers and agencies to use social news publishers and new, creative media placement. Their strategic, creative focus greatly differs from other media companies that are rather robotic in the way they buy media. Some of Giant Spoon’s clients include NBC Universal, GE (on Jimmy Fallon!) and Buzzfeed.

Best insight I got from Giant Spoon?- how exciting start-ups can be! The founders taught us that we shouldn’t be afraid to take risks, and follow great ideas. They knew they could change the way media was bought, and they had the courage to leave their jobs and start a company all on their own. Both of them seemed incredibly passionate and proud of their work, which left the students feeling completely energized and motivated.

 

This trip was the perfect way for me to spend my last spring break!  Special thanks to BU’s College of Communication, Tobe Berkovitz, Carolyn Clark, Allison Hoyt and Ms. Livingston and Mr. Levin for making the tour possible!

 

Lauren: Confessions of an A Cappella Girl

Remember that scene in the movie “Pitch Perfect” when the a cappella groups were performing in a huge competition on a national stage with awesome choreography and exciting songs?

That’s going to happen this Saturday at BU.  I repeat THIS SATURDAY.

And I’ll be there.  But I won’t just be attending.  I’ll actually be singing and dancing on stage with the 13 other amazingly talented girls in my a cappella group.  We’ve spent the last few weeks practicing our set list and we’re beyond excited to be competing against some of the best a cappella group in the New England area.

It’s been a long road to the quarterfinals.  We first had to submit a 10-minute video to show off our group’s performance style and musically ability.  Once we were accepted, we were beyond excited.  After hours of arranging songs, teaching music and learning choreography, we finally feel ready to show the crowd, and the judge, what we’re made of.

To be honest, this journey to the ICCAs has taught me a few important lesson:

1. Leader by Example

As music director, I’ve found that the best way to motivate the members of my group and get them excited is to be excited. I always try to have a positive attitude because it rubs off on people.  If you’re respectful toward others and work together with your group, they will emulate your behavior!  Nothing speaks louder than how you act, what you do and how your treat other people.

2. Be Realistic, But Never Lower Your Expectations

                  Everyone needs a break sometimes.  I can’t have my group rehearse for 7 hours straight, so I try to think realistically about what we can accomplish with the time we have together.   But that doesn’t mean I lower my expectations.  I still expect the girls to work hard and take rehearsal seriously.  I still expect us to sound fantastic and look like we’re having fun.  I know that a cappella is not our entire life, but I still want us to be proud of what we look and sound like when we sing on stage.  I try to push the members of my group to be better, and I’m always pleasantly surprised by how they rise to the occasion.

3. Never Shy Away from a Challenge   

The ICCAs are in no way “mandatory” for any group, and it requires a lot of time and effort.   Many groups choose not to participate because of the stress and pressure.  But sometimes, the most difficult and time-consuming challenges can be the most rewarding.  Having this opportunity has not only brought our group together and made us closer, but it has also helped myself, and the other members of my a cappella group, grow as leaders.  Plus, we can say we performed at the ICCAs.  How cool is that?

Personally, what I’m the most excited about is getting the chance to watch several groups rock it on stage.  While the road to ICCAs has been anything but easy, I’m proud to have the opportunity to work hard alongside my best friends.

Lauren: Apples to Apples

Hi everyone!  Hope you’re all having a fantastic semester so far!

Throughout my time here at BU, I’ve been a campus representative for a few brands (American Eagle Outfitters, IMAX, etc.) and now I’ve taken on the challenge of promoting the exciting card game, Apples to Apples.

Being a campus ambassador is a great way for mass communication, advertising and PR students to get experience with marketing, promotions, event planning & social media!  These positions have really helped improved my face-to-face communication skills and look impressive on my resume.  Plus, I’ve acquired a ton of branded promotional items over the years, which is awesome!  I’ve loved the experience that I’ve gotten working as a campus representative, and I highly recommend it to any student in COM!

With Apples to Apples, I get to work for Mattel, a huge toy-manufacturing company!  I go to on-campus events and student group meetings on a weekly basis to give away promotional materials, including lip balms, playing cards, t-shirts, full-sized games, tumblers and coupons!  The other Apples to Apples reps and I also host tournaments too and help spread the word about the game through guerilla marketing tactics!

If you want the Apples to Apples campus representatives to give goodies to your student group, email me at lhaslett@bu.edu!  We’d love to come by!  And definitely enter the Apples to Apples Crazy College Cash Giveaway here for your chance to win $10,000 IN CASH!

Follow Apples to Apples on Facebook & Twitter to get more awesome updates!

Until next time,

Lauren

 

Lauren: The Coolest Class I’ve Taken at BU!

Hi #BU2017!  I hope you’ve been having a fantastic first few weeks here at BU!

Now that I’m a senior (though I’m in total denial about it), I can say that I’ve taken a fair share of BU classes.  However, one particular class I’m taking this semester really stands out amongst the rest.  It’s a brand new type of learning experience, and I’m thrilled that I can be a part of it.
The course, AMP Insights Lab Incubator, is taught by individuals who work at AMP Agency, an integrated communications agency located here in Boston.  But instead of sitting in a classroom, the students get to learn in AMP’s awesome office.  It’s amazing to be in such a creative, productive environment, and it’s a nice change of scenery!

Each week, we discuss consumer trends and new technologies while exploring the intersection between creativity, strategy and technology.  We learn from some of the brightest minds in the industry during the weekly workshops in all the different advertising  departments like Account Management, Creative, Media, Technology, etc.   Each class is very hands-on and filled with interactive mini-projects and assignments.

The greatest aspect of the course, though, is that we get to work with an amazing client: The City of Boston.  Our final project involves creating a marketing strategy for the Onein3 Organization founded by Mayor Menino.  We’ll be presenting our ideas to city council workers in December, and we may even get to see our strategy implemented!  This Friday we have a special “kick-off” reception with the mayor himself, and I’ll get to meet him for the first time!  I’m ecstatic to be working on such an amazing project.

The College of Communication is constantly innovating, and this new type of class is just an example of how COM is giving students even more opportunities to get involved in the field.  I’m so thankful that AMP Agency has been so welcoming, and I can’t wait to see what the rest of the semester holds!

Until next time,

Lauren

Lauren: Work & Fun, but Mostly Fun!

Hi COM kiddies!  Hope everyone is having a fantastic summer!  To COM2015 & COM2016- I can’t wait until I get to see you guys back on campus!  And to COM2017?  Welcome to BU!   Get ready for the time of your life!

While I’m anxious to get back on campus and start my senior year (NOOO I never want to graduate!), I’m having the best time in Boston this summer!  I’m subletting an amazing apartment in Coolidge Corner, and it’s been quite different than living on campus!  I’m also cooking for myself for the very first time, which has definitely been a “trial and error” sort of experience, but I love it!

I’ve actually had my summer planned out for a while.  Since February, I knew that I’d be interning full time and singing a cappella for fun on the side.  It seemed like an ideal situation: mostly work, and a little bit of fun.

But the second I walked into Digitas and started my internship at this amazing advertising agency, I knew that, while it was going to be long hours, late nights and tough work, it was also going to be TONS of fun!  The company has a fantastic internship program!  The interns get to enjoy bonding activities (like Red Sox games), training sessions, community service days & more!  We’re also working on an internship project and growing really close as an intern class.  Plus, they have many great past interns who now work at the company (like our very own Tiffany!)

The best part is that no day is exactly the same.  You’ve got to be on your A-game if you’re working at an agency, because it’s very fast-paced and exciting.  There’s never a dull moment at Digitas, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.  And, although I’ve only been there for three weeks, I’ve already learned so much.  I know I’m always writing about how important internships are, but I really mean it.  No textbook or lecture can teach you this stuff!  It’s an experience like no other.

But I only get to add on to the fun this summer by being in B Line Breakdown, the summer a cappella group at BU!  Comprised of singers from many of BU’s a cappella groups, we spend our time together bopping and harmonizing to some really cool jams!  It’s a great way to bond with my fellow Terriers over our love of a cappella.  There’s nothing quite like being surrounded by people who share the same passion as you!

I feel so lucky that I’m able to do two things that I truly, deeply love.  My challenge for you all this summer is to find your own perfect balance between work and fun.  But maybe, if you’re lucky, you’ll find that your work, and your fun, are the same thing!

 

Lauren: Tweet Tips

*Tweet, Tweet*

Anyone who knows me is well aware of my obsession with Twitter.  I tweet constantly, but it’s OK.  I’m pretty sure I don’t need an intervention.  Not yet, anyway…

Since I spend way too much time on Twitter, I thought I’d share some advice on how to make the most of your Twitter time, so you’re not just mindlessly scrolling through your news feed for hours like I do all the time!

Well, here you go:

  1. Use Hootsuite!

Hoosuite is a great social media management tools that allows you to schedule tweets ahead of time, which is awesome and really convenient.  You can also follow customized feeds (using search words) and easily manage multiple accounts at the same time.  I’ve found it helpful that I can see what I’ve tweeted, who’s retweeted or mentioned me, and my news feed all on the same page!  It makes life easier (and the owl logo is so adorable).  If you’re slightly OCD like me, and enjoy keeping things organized, Hoosuite is the way to go!  And it’s free, for all the broke college students out there!

 

  1. Participate in TweetChats

Remember chatting on AIM back in the day?  Well, the new version of that comes in the form of TweetChats.  Basically, everyone involved in the discussion just uses the same hashtag to follow along with the conversation.  Using http://tweetchat.com/ makes it really easy to see what everyone’s tweeting about.  There are tons of chats about all different types of topics that are hosted by all different types of people.  Feel free to check out this list here:  http://gnosisarts.com/home/Tweetchat_Wiki/By_Day

My personal favorites are the weekly #LikeableChat, #InternPro chat and #PinChat.  Joining in a tweetchat is a great way to network and interact with tons of interesting people!

  1. Add your own header picture

Twitter allows users to get creative with the theme of their page.   It’s really easy to design a customized background and header in Photoshop or InDesign, and it’s definitely worth it. Having an interesting design will make you stand out, and adds some flare to you page!  You can find more information about dimensions here: http://twitterheadersize.com/ and  http://ct-social.com/twitter-background/

  1. Have fun with it!

What I love about Twitter is that you really can tweet about anything you want.  You can share content from other sources, tweet silly pictures or state your opinions about what’s going on in the world- it’s all about you!  Determine what you want to get out of your Twitter, and go for it!

I hope to see all you little tweetbirds on Twitter sometime soon.  Feel free to follow me at @laurhaslett.

Until next time,

Lauren

 

Lauren: You Gotta Get LinkedIn!

Hi guys!  Anyone who knows me can attest to the fact that I’m a social media fanatic.  I’m constantly tweeting, checking in, and pining anything and everything I find.  But, when it comes to getting an internship or preparing for the workforce, it’s all about LinkedIn.  Every college student should create an account.  Even if you don’t have a ton of experience to include in your profile, it’s definitely worth having one, and here’s why:

1. You’ll make a great first impression when applying for an internship

Employers do Google search potential employees during the hiring process.  Trust me.  And nothing looks more professional than having a LinkedIn profile.  It’s a great way to show that you’re serious, and it gives you the chance to show off all the experiences that you’ve had in the past.  Plus, LinkedIn has great features that allow you to add links to different projects you’ve completed.  How cool!

2. You’ll be totally prepared for interviews.

Knowing about a company and asking interesting questions during the interview will definitely put you ahead of the competition.  That’s where LinkedIn comes in.  You can search companies on LinkedIn and learn more about their mission and services.  Plus, you can get the chance to see the type of people who work there.  You can even find people who’ve previously had the position that you’re applying for, and look at their job description to get a better grasp on the responsibilities of the position.  It’s like Facebook stalking, but a lot less creepy.

3. You’ll have networking down to an art.

LinkedIn is a great place to connect with people in the industry!  You never know who may have a job lead, or who could connect you with someone who has your dream job.  You can join groups, follow companies and stay up-to-date on what you’re connections are doing.

4. All your hard work will finally pay off!

Remember that job you had where you worked countless hours and really gave it all you’ve got?  Well, you can have something concrete to show for it by asking for a recommendation or endorsement from past employer or colleagues.  If you ever feel awkward about bragging about yourself, let someone else do it for you!  Potential employees will love it!

So, what are you waiting for!  Go ahead and create your account here:

Lauren: Why Every College Student Should Have a Pinterest Page

Pinterest has been taking the world by storm, becoming one of the fastest-growing social media sites.  Users can create visual boards and upload their own images or “re-pin,” pictures from other users.  I’ve found so much inspiration while browsing through Pinterest and have collected so many great tips and suggestions!  Every college student should take time to find their own inspiration from Pinterest.  Look for:

1. Dorm room design ideas

Give your dorm room a makeover with ideas from Pinterest!  They have tons of organizational tips and great DIY crafts that you can complete on a budget.  How perfect for college students!  Take a look at this board from USA Today for inspiration!

http://pinterest.com/usatodaycollege/creative-dorm-rooms/

2. Food recipes

With so many drool-worthy pictures of food on Pinterest, you’ll stomach will be growling before you know it!  Pinterest contains lots of delicious, super easy recipes.  They even have quick snacks that you can make without using an oven or stove!  Give your taste buds a kick and try something new from this board!

http://pinterest.com/heathermcd/food/

3. Fitness tips

Lace up those sneakers and let Pinterest get you into shape.  They have everything from treadmill workouts to cardio tips, weight-lifting exercises and even work-outs you can complete while watching T.V.  You’ll find tons of great resources for healthy eating too!   Take a look at this board for some motivation!

http://pinterest.com/tiffallison/fitness/

4. Inspirational Quotes

If you’re ever having a rough day, Pinterest is here to cheer you up!  They have hundreds of quotes that can lift your spirits and help you get through your day.  Here’s a collection of some of my personal favorites!

http://pinterest.com/laurhaslett/quotes/

5. Careers advice

Nervous about an upcoming interview?  No clue what to wear to the first day of your internship?  Fear not!  Pinterest has all the answers, with great tips on networking, the job hunt, and everything relating to careers!  Take a look at this board for more tips.

http://pinterest.com/kristenjacoway/career-tips/

So, what are you waiting for?  Give Pinterest a try to today and find your own inspiration!

 

Lauren: First-day Intern Tips!

Welcome back everyone!  Hope you’ve all had a fantastic break!  Are you guys ready for an exciting semester?

A little while ago, I wrote a post with some tips on how to end your internship on a high note!   While leaving a great last impression is important, it’s also crucial to start out your internship on the right foot!

I just recently had my first day as a social media intern at 451 Marketing, and while starting out at a new company can be intimidating, it’s also a great experience.

Here are some simple tips for making a great first impression at the start of your internship:

1. Be punctual!

Nothing looks worse than being late on the first day, or on any day, of your internship.  It may take a few weeks to get into the swing of the morning commute, so for your first few days, make sure you leave with plenty of time to get there,  taking into consideration that there could be back-ups or traffic delays (sometimes, public transportation can be a little unreliable.)

2. Don’t be afraid to ask questions!

You’ll probably get a lot of information thrown at you on your first day, so speak up if you have any questions!  Don’t know where the bathroom is?  Ask an employee or fellow intern!   Want to find a place to get lunch?  See if the receptionist can give you any suggestions!  Don’t be shy, or it could hurt you in the long run!

3. Shake hands and be friendly!

On the first day, you’ll probably meet tons of people, everyone from the CEO to your fellow interns!  When you’re being introduced or meeting a new person, smile, make eye contact and give a nice, firm handshake!  Always remember to be polite and enthusiastic.  After all, it’s exciting to meet new people!

4. Don’t play on your phone or go on Facebook!

Constantly checking your phone and texting your friends is not appropriate in the office, especially as an intern.  Avoid the temptation by keeping your phone turned off and in your purse or pocket!  Also, don’t go on your Facebook or Twitter page when you’re supposed to be doing an assignment on the computer.  This will make you look very unprofessional.  You’re there to learn, so save the personal browsing for when you’re in your dorm!

5. Don’t be too nervous!

Remember, you were hired because the people at the company liked you!  Relax, have fun and be confident! Remember that this is a learning experience and an amazing opportunity for you!  Enjoy it, and get as much out of it as possible!

It can sometimes be challenging to juggle classes and an internship, but it will definitely be worth it in the long run! Congratulations to all the students interning this semester, and good luck!

 

Lauren: Interviews Galore!

Have a big interview coming up for a job or internship?  Don’t stress!  Here are some tips on how to make an awesome first impression without having a minor heart attack in the process.

1. Do some research beforehand

Make sure you know about the company before you walk into your interview!  It will make you look professional and dedicated if you mention that you recently saw an article about the company in the news.  Also, think about what kind of questions they might ask you and how you would answer them!  And come prepared with some of your own questions to ask them at the end of the interview!

2. Dress professionally

Pick out your outfit the night before so that you won’t have to stress about it in the morning.  Even if you know that many employees wear jeans to work, still dress professionally!  They’ve earned the right to dress that way after working for the company for 10 years, you haven’t!  If you need some fashion advice, the BU Center for Career Development has some great tips for how to dress for an interview!  Check it out!

3. Arrive early and come prepared

Give yourself plenty of time to get to the interview, that way when you come in you won’t look stressed or out of breath.  Punctuality is key, and a company won’t hire you if they don’t think you’re reliable.  Nothing looks worse than strolling in 10 minutes late!  And don’t forget business cards and copies of your resume!

4. Relax and look interested

Take a deep breath and try to calm your nerves right before you go in!  Give the person interviewing you a firm handshake when you’re introduced, and make eye contact with them throughout the interview.  Nod your head and really pay attention to what they’re saying.  Show them that you’re interested and passionate about the position.  Body language is crucial- sit up straight and smile!  And take a second to think before answering a question so that you sound clear and well-spoken.

5. Talk yourself up

Remember, if you got to the interviewing process, they must have seen something in you that they liked!  Have confidence in yourself and remember that it’s alright to brag!  Be proud of your past accomplishments, and tell them how your experience and skills would make you a perfect fit for the company.  This is your chance to make a great first impression and show them just how wonderful you are!

6. Thank them afterward

Make sure at the end of the interview that you thank them for their time.  These people are very busy, and took time out of their day to give you a chance!  A handwritten thank you note or email is the perfect way to show how thankful you are!  Follow up and try to stay in touch-never underestimate the importance of networking and making connections!

If you’re looking for more tips, The Center for Career Development is a great resource for everything and anything relating to jobs, internships, networking and interviews!  Check out their website and take a look at their calendar for information about upcoming workshops and networking events!

Good luck!