Shelley Graff joined our team with plenty of educational accolades, but a limited amount of real-world digital marketing experience. Follow her as she enters the Content Marketing arm of the Digital Marketing Jungle. This volume of the “Welcome to the Jungle” Series covers her journey from hardcore marketing student to hardcore digital marketer. – Ed.
I could not believe how lucky I was to be offered a job in digital marketing. As a student of journalism and communications, I was set on doing something where my skills would be utilized, while concurrently I would be able to further my knowledge within the field of marketing. It would appear that I have succeeded. Everyone here has been more than helpful, and I come in to work everyday feeling both challenged and supported by those around me.
Following the acquisition of my master’s degree, I was offered an internship doing Internet marketing coordination for a commercial printer in downtown Chicago. Getting to experience the practical application of all of the theories that I had studied was exhilarating, however, the Director of Sales & Marketing was very new to his position as well.
This made my prospect for learning more than I already knew very limited. While I cannot stress how grateful I am to have been provided with actual real-world experience, I always knew my days working there were ultimately numbered. Upon being presented with the opportunity to join a well-versed digital team, I jumped at the chance.
A few weeks have passed, and I already feel as though I have grown as a marketing professional. The world of SEO, SEM, PPC and Social Media is intricate, vast, and ever changing, yet I feel as though I am in extremely capable hands. One aspect of doing marketing for any industry is gaining in-depth knowledge of the industry itself. I previously had to learn a great deal about the print industry, which I knew very little about. If you had asked me two years ago what direct to substrate or UV printing was I would have drawn a blank.
That is not the case anymore. Transitioning from the realm of commercial print into that automotive marketing has been much more fun to say the very least. Cars have always been my father’s passion, and by proxy, one of mine. That being said, I also know how personal the car buying business can be. There is a great deal of research and emotion that people put into purchasing a new vehicle. To effectively communicate the value of one’s brand to such a particular audience can be a tricky, tricky thing.
I look forward to gaining even more insight into the inner-workings of digital marketing in the automotive industry. It is refreshing to be working with people that understand the value of such concepts as quality, original content and ORM (Online Reputation Management). Marketing in the digital age has become a two-way street in which the consumer’s voice must be heard as well. Never has a company had to attend to its consumer base on this level, and never has transparency been so important to a company’s future success. There seems to be a thorough appreciation of these values here, and I could not be more excited!