F I V E Lessons I Learned from the rp Marketing Team
On my very first day at redpepper I, like all interns, was introduced to my mentors: Samara Anderson, Elizabeth Moore, and Alyssa Kalams, formally referred to as the redpepper marketing department. I would compare this trio's level of greatness to something so great only Destiny's Child themselves could surpass it. As a marketing intern, my job is centered around bringing in new clients. Everyday looks a little different than the last -- between researching, client meetings, blog posts, intern projects, and the occasional canoe trip, things stay busy. Mentors are the friendly face standing behind you in line for the free food, but they also serve as the guiding force behind everything you do during your intern experience. Unlike most internships, at redpepper, your mentor is freely accessible and ready to hear every opinion, question, and concern. A little bit of background information to catch you up-to-date:
Samara serves as the director of marketing. She brings in the cash and the clients with pristine luscious locks, quick wit, and a workout schedule that easily rivals Jillian Michaels’s. Leave her in a room with a client for 30 minutes and I promise you they will walk away with a signed contract.
Elizabeth handles all digital marketing for redpepper, to say she stays busy would be an understatement. She is a master of all things automated and Hubspot and a firm believer that cats will always trump dogs. The only thing this girl is more passionate about than her job is a good True Crime podcast (the more disturbing the better).
If you ever want to see what a fashionable millennial should dress like, I would gladly refer you to Alyssa, the rp sales coordinator. She may or may not have worn jeans for a week that bruised her skin because #fashion. The only thing more on point than her pants is her schedule. Alyssa knows how to get things done, often times before anyone else realizes they need to be done.
These women have offered me such different and unique perspectives of the marketing world. With only a week left in my internship, I feel it’s important to look back and reflect on my time at redpepper, and find some pink gold (redpepper talk for “Hey, this is what I learned!!”)
1. It’s not personal, so don’t take it like it is
All three of my mentors are very engaging people with very dominant personalities. There is a 10/10 chance that I screwed up numerous tasks this summer. There is also a 10/10 chance that I was called out each time. It wasn’t personal, it never is. So don’t act like it’s the end of the world or it’s all your fault. You live. You learn. You move on. Do things in this order and everyone walks away with friendships still intact at the end of the day.
2. If you want it, go for it!
So much of redpepper’s success can be attributed to the marketing department’s willingness to go for it. Don’t let anything stand in your way. Don’t be afraid to reach out to people you don’t know, form connections, take risks, and be bold. During my first week, I remember asking Alyssa, “What is one thing you wish you had known before you were an intern?” She thought about it for a second and said, “I wish I would have realized that there are so many connections to be made. I remember Samara telling me on my first day that everyone here knows someone. That’s so true!” Expand your network and don’t be shy!
3. Knowledge is power
There is always so much to be learned. I work with three of the most successful women in the marketing industry (maybe a biased opinion, but you get the picture). All three of my mentors have a hunger and thirst for learning -- Elizabeth spends half of her days researching new digital marketing strategies. No matter how successful you are there is always room for growth. Dig into news articles, websites, white pages, research case studies, and whatever else you can get your hands on. Read, read, and read some more. When you think you’ve read enough, keep reading.
4. Become an active participant
Don’t just sit there! Speak your mind and raise your voice. If you don’t have anything to say, take notes! Absorb as much information as you can so you can form an opinion. Not sure what in the world is going on? Ask questions until you do. Whatever you do, please don’t just sit there, and if you are going to just sit there and completely disregard my advice, don’t let Samara see you. This goes hand and hand with the whole, “Knowledge is Power,” concept. When you ask questions, take notes, and listen carefully, you’re expanding your understanding of the world around you. As you expand your understanding it’s important you recognize that there is value in others’ opinions as well, be willing to compromise and be willing to see both sides of a topic.
5. You're never fully dressed without a great pair of shoes
My first day at redpepper I walked into the New Biz meeting room and sat next to Samara. As I looked around the table I noticed a common denominator -- GREAT SHOES! I looked at Samara and said something that a true suck-up might say like "Oh my gosh, your shoes are so great! I love them!!" Being the sassy human she is, she flashed a smile, winked, and retorted with something to the effect of, "Well now you know the secret, you know how to get to the top!"
Obviously in my time at redpepper I've learned that a lot of factors go into success, a lot of factors that take a lot of time and commitment, but if you want to look great while becoming successful, don't forget a fabulous pair of shoes.
Margaret Frank, rp Marketing intern, Nashville, TN