Being a Digital Marketing Intern During COVID-19

I started my eight-month digital internship in January 2020, only two months before the outbreak of COVID-19. So inevitably, like with nearly everything else during that time, there was a period of adaptation to the interruptions caused by shutdowns and quarantine efforts. Since we were unable to stay in the office past March, my internship experience was not how I expected it to be. Nonetheless, it was an amazing learning experience and reassured my love and passion for digital marketing and the advertising industry.

On my first day, I was given a desk and a computer to work with, (and might I say this in itself exciting experiences as I have never had my own desk at a job before) which was located in ‘the Digi-room’. The ‘Digi-Team’ and all the ‘adHOMEies’ were super welcoming and made me feel right adHOME (get it). After my first ever Monday meeting and an office tour, my internship had begun.

In the first months, I spent my time learning adHOME’s processes and becoming familiar with what my roles and responsibilities would be during my internship. As an intern, I assisted the digital team with various client projects working in all areas including; SEM, SEO, social media market research, developing reports/presentations, sitting in on strategy meetings, and more. Also, I was tasked with running and developing content for adHOME’s website and social media and social media advertisements. As time went on, I was feeling like I was picking things up and was becoming more confident with my abilities, particularly in navigating and effectively using Google Analytics and Google AdWords.

When March hit, it was clear that the novel coronavirus was quickly becoming a problem around the world and that the Canadian government was gearing up for a potential lockdown as we had seen in other countries. On March 17th, everyone got called into the plaza and it was announced that we would all be working from home until further notice. Everyone seemed a little nervous but overall adHOME’s partners and management did an amazing job at explaining what we should expect and mitigating employee concerns. After packing up my stuff at work we all went home to set up our workspaces at home.

Working from home came with its own set of challenges and learning curves, to most important of which being self-motivation, time-consciousness, and communication. It goes without saying that when working from home you must learn to adapt your work habits to better fit the remote environment, especially when it comes to being self-sufficient. Obviously, as an intern who had only been with the company for two months at the time and still learning the ropes, this would be a big adjustment. 

Since experiencing working remotely I feel as though I have a much better understanding of the work-life balance that is required in the digital marketing field. To explain, since nearly everything we do can be accomplished on the computer it can be really hard to sign off and stop working when you are deep in a project. While on the other hand, it can be equally as hard to focus on a task and get work done with the chaos of home life swirling around you. As a result, it is incredibly important to figure out how to find a healthy balance and to make an effort to separate the two even if your office can be your living room.  

Throughout the remainder of my internship, my responsibilities shifted slightly to now focus my attention on internal work. At first, I was admittedly a little sad that I would no longer be working on as much client-related projects, but I was still able to learn a lot while managing internal work particularly in social media management. It was my responsibility to strategize, implement, and report back on adHOME’s social media content with monthly meetings occurring with the company partners to review the results. This project really helped me build confidence in my presentation skills as well as expanded my knowledge in social media as a whole. Prior to working with adHOME, I had not used LinkedIn very much personally, nor had I any hands-on experience with the backend of social media advertising. Now, I would feel very confident in running an advertisement campaign on all the major social media platforms.

From my internship at adHOME, I gained more experience than I could have imagined. Not only did working here make me feel more confident in my technical abilities with the chance to gain hands-on experience in my field, but working remotely also provided the opportunity to improve my professional organization and communication skills.  

Knowing that I was an intern during unusual circumstances, I know that in many ways my time at adHOME was very unique. However, nonetheless, I would absolutely do it again in a heartbeat. I really enjoyed my time at adHOME and will immensely miss my adHOMEies while I am back in school and feel incredibly grateful for the opportunity to work with such an awesome group of talented individuals.