Fall 2016 Interns Add Spice to Garfield’s Latte

Posted by Larry Garfield
Nov
28
2016

Fall means pumpkin spice, coffee, and a new group of interns at Garfield Group. This season, we hosted a great team of interns who cranked out awe-inspiring work and learned a ton about agency life (while enjoying said pumpkin spice and coffee, of course). From research to copywriting, design, and strategic planning, this cohort impressed us at every turn (and had fun doing it!).

Nate Stauffer | 21 | Barto, PA | Copywriting Intern | Temple University | Advertising - Copywriting

How did you first hear about Garfield Group?

I first found out about Garfield Group while exploring agencies on the Philly Ad Club website earlier this year.

What influenced you to apply?

As an advertising major with a concentration in copywriting, I am always eager to expand and enhance my skills as a writer. When I decided to apply for an internship this past fall, the copy intern position at Garfield stood out to me. I was intrigued by the way they brought awesome creative execution to technical B2B clients. It was also refreshing to find an agency with a clear desire to give back to their community.

Describe a typical day for you at Garfield Group.

Each day is different. That’s a good thing. Garfield provides a broad range of assignments and projects to work on, which helps you develop your skills across the board. A given day could include researching clients and competitors, developing SEO proposals, attending meetings, completing website QA, or writing social posts, as well as creating, editing, and revising copy for a variety of digital and print projects. Of course, you can always look forward to the staples: morning (and afternoon) coffee, updates with the copy team, and Oxford comma affirmation.

My ‘Create Brand Action’ Moment

As part of the creative team, Garfield instilled the importance of collaboration — that the potency of the idea itself is worth far more than receiving credit for it. I had the privilege of experiencing this firsthand, which allowed me to gain what I believe is a key attribute of a successful creative.

When my idea for Garfield’s annual holiday campaign was selected by the higher-ups as the direction the agency would be taking, I have to admit, I was pretty stoked — naturally. As the weeks progressed, I was able to witness this concept grow and develop into a full-fledged campaign formed by everyone on the team, far greater than anything that I had originally anticipated. Although it may have started as my idea, it was through my team that it became a reality. I am grateful that this realization happened while at Garfield because, thanks to their values, this was a positive experience that will benefit me throughout my career.

Tips for Aspiring Garfield Interns

When it comes time for your interview, show off your skills! Whether you bring samples from class, personal projects, or work from past experiences, let your enthusiasm be known. If you’re proud of a piece that you’ve done, go ahead and geek out about it. Explain your creative process. Prove that this is your passion. And embrace feedback. This is a field of constant cultivation. Always be looking for ways to improve.

Once you secure a position, make the most out of it! You will have tons of opportunities to learn new skills and refine the ones you’ve got. Be curious. Ask questions. Stand out. Before you know it, you’ll be sitting at your desk writing tips for the next in line.

Tom Logue | 25 | Marlton, NJ | Strategy/Account Intern| Rowan University | Public Relations; Advertising

How did you first hear about Garfield Group?

I first heard about Garfield at a club networking event at my university — there, I met one of Garfield’s Account Executives, who also went to Rowan!

What influenced you to apply?

One of my friends from Rowan spent her summer as a Copywriting intern for Garfield just before I started. She came back to school with rave reviews of her experiences there — the people, the atmosphere, the responsibilities. I loved Garfield’s friendly, casual culture. I loved its intelligently designed creative. But most of all, I loved Garfield’s clear dedication to have fun — even be a bit goofy, in a good way — in its work.

Describe a typical day for you at Garfield Group.

“Strategy/Account” really means you get your hands into anything and everything at Garfield. And things change so much that I’m not sure there is a “typical day.” However, in my two plus months here, I did have some recurring responsibilities.

I researched media/publications in many different verticals to find the best opportunities for clients. I built extensive media pitches for clients, laying out budget recommendations down to the dollar. I sat in on account team meetings, offering my thoughts on message strategy and creative direction. I helped map out new web designs for clients, touched up social media posts, and helped plan Garfield’s annual holiday service project.

My ‘Create Brand Action’ Moment

My best moment at Garfield bloomed from the simplest of things. I volunteered to reimagine Garfield’s job descriptions — a low-priority job that kept getting pushed to the back of the queue. A few weeks into my internship, I asked Garfield’s Junior Copywriter, Natalie, for some feedback on the project. Afterward, she told me that “Everyone [was] really impressed with you. You take a lot of initiative, and you do really good work.” That conversation made me really understand that I wasn’t just an intern when I was at Garfield. My coworkers considered me part of their team. They expected things from me, and — from at least one perspective — I proved I was up to the task.

Tips for Aspiring Garfield Interns

  1. Ask questions. You’re here to learn, so asking questions may seem like obvious advice, but it’s a total game changer. Asking questions shows that you’re interested, proactive, and professional. Asking good questions makes you memorable — which can especially help come job season.

  2. Keep a log. I don’t know if Garfield will continue this in the future, but my intern class received a special Garfield journal on day one. I made a point to write a few sentences about my thoughts, feelings, and projects every single day. It really helped me remember the most important things about my time here. “Day 13: Drafted new social media posts. Forgot my good pen at home. Someone brought in delicious cake pops. Ken plays good music.”

  3. Tell them what you want. Everyone at Garfield seems genuinely invested in helping you learn and grow. So let them know what you’re interested in and what kind of experience you want.

  4. Use the Oxford comma. Google it.

 

Melissa Gagnon | 23 | Levittown, PA | Graphic Design Intern | Temple University | Advertising

How did you first hear about Garfield Group?

I discovered Garfield Group when I was searching for an agency I could work at close to home. My first internship had a long commute, so cutting my time from 40 minutes to a 10 minute drive was awesome. The power of Google and the right keywords led me to the Garfield website.

What influenced you to apply?

After checking out the website, I got a good sense of the look and feel of the agency. Not only was it great that the location was so close to home, but it seemed like an interesting place to learn more about the industry.

Describe a typical day for you at Garfield Group.

Typically, my day starts with me checking in with the team of art directors and the creative director for what I’m doing that day. Like Nate said, each day is different. Garfield often has many projects, which for an intern is great — because it allows us to see how different things are handled.

I usually spend all day working with Meg and Mike, the two art directors, and I’m glad to have had the opportunity not only to learn from them, but also to get to know them. We always found something to talk and joke about. They instantly welcomed me to the team and answered any question I had. Plus, there’s always snacks — you can’t go wrong with snacks.

My ‘Create Brand Action’ Moment

I believe Garfield made me realize that I chose the right career path. At school I studied both copy and design, and I was kind of stuck before on which path to dedicate myself to. It never felt like a drag to come into work, because I just love to design and being a part of that world. Being here allowed me to have firsthand experience with actual client work — even making a banner ad to be featured in USA Today. It made what I worked hard toward in school real, and I’m completely happy with my choices.

Tips for Aspiring Garfield Interns

Don’t be afraid to show off your creativity. Sometimes it takes a bold and crazy idea to get yourself into the creative process, and you can always work backwards from there. Also, don’t be afraid to find inspiration in other’s work. Some days I would go to Pinterest or Behance and search for an idea for a project, and I almost always left with something. Finally, it can be kind of nerve-wracking to show off your work — second guessing is normal, but don’t let it stop you. Overall, just be yourself.