Digital Marketing is currently one of the most exciting industries out there – a fast-paced world, full of constant innovation, new technologies and opportunities to influence an evolving market.
It’s not hard, therefore, to see why so many grads choose to follow this path once university is over, and why roles within the field are some of the most popular we get on GradTouch.
However, what is working in Digital Marketing really like? I met with Olivia, a Biology graduate currently working at London based agency, Merkle-Periscopix, to find out more about whether a role in the industry truly stands up to the hype.
Olivia joined Merkle-Periscopix in 2016 after completing her degree at the University of Birmingham. Despite her scientific background, she knew she wanted to pursue a career that would allow her to be more creative. After returning from a ski season and deciding to investigate the different opportunities within the Marketing industry, she came across a job advertisement for Merkle-Periscopix’s Programmatic Display graduate scheme and realised it could provide the perfect opportunity to unleash her creativity, while still making use of her natural flair for figures:
“I saw that the skills I had gained in my degree, things like analysing data, would sit really well in Programmatic, as it’s the more technical side of Marketing,” she remembered. “I ended up reading up a lot about it, and didn’t find myself getting bored at all… so that’s why I chose it.”
After successfully interviewing and landing a position at the organisation, Olivia joined the Programmatic Display Academy and got stuck into a training scheme designed to help her get to grips with this relatively new industry, which most know very little about:
“Programmatic is very niche and it is different to usual ‘Marketing’”, she explained. “We buy advertising space on webpages through an auction based process. We target audiences or specific webpages and put adverts in front of users… We set up all the rules, manage the campaigns and then report on what is working and what isn’t.”
After a few months of training, she was given the autonomy to work directly with clients as an Account Manager, even leading presentations on their campaigns’ success to them. And, since then, she’s continued to be trusted on big accounts: “One exciting project that I’m working on at the moment is for one of the biggest UK retailers,” she told me. “We’re doing lots of different tests with them… and the results are going to inform their Christmas strategy, which is exciting.”
It’s not always been an easy ride, however: “We have a number of clients and we have to make sure we are keeping them all happy. So, I think managing your time is probably the most challenging aspect of this job, especially if you’ve come straight out of uni and not had much experience of working in an office,” she admits.
“But you can’t be afraid to make mistakes – in your first job, you are going to make a few but the important thing is to get stuck in and try your hardest,” she adds.
Despite any challenges, she has appreciated the support that she has received throughout and has never regretted her decision to step away from the laboratory to follow her Marketing dream: “When a client is happy with the result, that’s just the best thing – you’ve done all this hard work and you finally get to show everything you’ve done.”
Would Olivia recommend a career in Digital Marketing?
“I would definitely recommend Digital Marketing,” she stated. “It’s a really exciting place to be, especially as it’s expanding and there’s new technology constantly evolving... We don’t really know where it’s going to be in the next 5 years.”
Yet it’s not only the industry that Olivia has loved; the team and culture at Merkle-Periscopix has also impressed: “It’s so nice coming into work,” she replied when I asked why she’s keen to stay with the organisation and continue to progress her career. “It’s genuinely a joy to work with everyone as they’re just so nice and all get on really well."