So far, I’ve been interning at redpepper for about five weeks. My time here has been so worthwhile and unlike anything I’ve done before. When choosing an internship for this summer, redpepper’s emphasis on culture and community distinguished it from the rest, and these qualities have definitely enhanced my intern experience. I’ve been privileged to learn the ins and outs of agency life from some amazing people and I now feel like I have a much better understanding of this industry. I’ve been able to get involved in meaningful projects throughout the past month, and I know that my time here so far has been well spent.
I’m a copywriting intern, which basically means that I get to help with a bunch of different writing-related projects. I’ve loved my exposure to this career so far, but I’ve learned that these skills don’t always come easily. I came here pretty confident that my English major writing skills would merit this the perfect internship, but I overlooked one major detail: I had little prior knowledge of copywriting. To my surprise, writing copy is much different than crafting an essay for English class. Upon starting my internship, I discovered that I had to learn an entirely new skill set in a short amount of time.
Luckily, I soon realized that the skills I needed were ones I already possessed, I just had to tweak them slightly. Until this summer, my mission with all writing was to be as concise, analytical, and flowery as possible. Since coming to redpepper, I’ve had to learn to write in a new way.
A major goal of copywriting is to emulate your company’s personality through all channels. To me, writing in someone else’s voice felt foreign and uncomfortable at first. However, I soon realized that my task wasn’t necessarily to pretend like I’m someone else. My goal was to channel my personality in new ways in order to give my writing some character.
Once I had a better understanding of copywriting, I decided that for my intern project, I should make a style guide template that redpepper can use for its clients. A style guide for writing is basically a manual that describes the company’s brand personality and desired voice and tone. Writers can use this guide to help emulate a brand’s voice. Through crafting this template, I have learned to reconsider aspects of writing that I previously overlooked or took for granted.
Challenges aside, I’ve learned to look at writing in a completely new light. Instead of concerning myself with how pretentious my writing sounds, I now know how to color it with personality. I used to often view creative writing and analytical writing separately, but I now know that I can blend my creative and analytical writing skills to produce well-rounded work that has character.
Caroline Stamy, Copywriting Intern