My name is Anna and I am a Business Management with Marketing (BSc) student at Harper Adams University. I have just finished my placement year taking on the role of marketing and administration executive at a cookery school in Derbyshire. Prior to my return to Harper Adams for my final year of study, I decided I wanted to understand what work is like from an agency side of marketing. Andy, from Hillsgreen Marketing was extremely kind and allowed me to spend a week with him to really understand exactly what it’s like.
Projects completed during my work experience
On arrival of my first day at Hillsgreen Marketing and Thrive Creative, I was greeted with the task to undertake market research for a prospect client. I researched the target audience for the business, alongside competitor research, and also looked at key trends within the industry, which highlighted some really important points. A key element of the research was to identify which methods the prospective target audience buy clothes and shoes, whether it’s from physical stores, direct mail, or online. The research was extremely interesting showing some very helpful statistics which hopefully will aid decision making for the prospect business in the future. Alongside this, it was really interesting to create a brand positioning map and ‘persona’s’ of the type of client the business would attract. By undertaking this, it was then possible to start to think about which marketing methods would be of most benefit to the prospect company. I thoroughly enjoyed this project.
Alongside this, I have taken a look at an up and coming rural company that is extremely new. The company did have a website, but had not been marketed yet. We begin by adding the company to a range of quality listing pages such as Bing, Yelp, The Mirror and Hot Frog. By doing this, this will help aid the ranking of the website in organic searches as it will increase the domain strength and trust of the website. Not only this, but it will also help potential customers to see that the company is a legitimate company, which provides verification – I think this is extremely important in this day in age to help make customers feel they can trust a company and its brand.
Similarly, I was able to look at another new business. However, this time the company was setting up a sister brand to its current egg selling business. This company do not have a website currently, so it was all about competitor research to identify good elements of competitor websites, social media pages and content too. By doing this, we were able to create a fuller brief for the best way to portray the company on it’s new website. It was interesting to be put in the mind-set of a family business and how they may want to be portrayed within the industry.
During my work experience I was lucky enough that Andy invited me to a Vistage event on my final day, whereby a hugely inspirational speaker was talking about leadership skills, and how to get fully focused on your biggest dreams, including how to achieve them. These were both personal and professional. This was a great opportunity for me to focus the mind on exactly where I’d like to be within the next few years, and how best to get there. It was a great chance to get to meet lots of new and inspiring people, and I loved every minute of it.
What I learnt during my time at Hillsgreen Marketing
During the week, I have learnt a huge amount. A key thing which I will take away from the experience is the importance to really understand the client, their target market and how the company’s values should be portrayed in the way they market and present themselves online.
I was able to have a fully guided tour of google analytics, which is something I have always wanted to do, and this was extremely educational. There really is such a huge amount that google analytics can do to help businesses to channel the best marketing methods for them.
Over the course of the week, it was a lovely experience to see such a variety of different businesses, and see how each one markets differently to the other. It was good to think about what may work for new businesses compared with more established businesses, and I thoroughly enjoyed this element of the role.
My favourite element of the week was getting to listen to a fantastic talk about leadership, something which made me think about my future, and how I will get there. It has given me confidence to strive to be the best I can be within my professional life.
Lastly, thank you to the team at Hillsgreen & Thrive for giving me this opportunity, and being fantastic at teaching me new things, it’s been great to learn on the job and I can safely say I have enjoyed every second.