B2B Marketing Blog

Choosing the Right Marketing Interns: 5 Key Things to Look For – Amanda Steeves

May 18, 2012 3:30:25 AM / by The Mezzanine Group

We will soon be saying goodbye to our Marketing and Special Projects intern. A co-op business student, we tasked the intern with an incredible amount of work during his four months with The Mezzanine Group. As this intern role was new for us, there was a lot riding on the first person in this role to demonstrate the quality of young marketing talent, the eagerness for our upcoming generation to gain work experience, and to show that they can deliver.

And he did.

Our entire team was impressed with this student’s ability and hunger to learn new activities and tools, to step up when needed, to understand our business and to deliver . . . continuously.

Marketing interns can be incredibly valuable to a company who needs some extra support to execute on its marketing activities – it’s a win-win. And there are government incentives such as tax benefits for hiring co-op students and even grants such as the Small Business Internship Program (SBIP) which provides up to $10,000 toward a marketing intern.

If your company is considering a marketing intern, here are 5 things to look for when you are recruiting.

1) Initiative – A critical attribute for anyone team member, this is about anticipating needs, asking if help is needed and always staying in front of the task. Whether it’s as simple as asking if you need anything else before they leave or overhearing an urgent matter and offering their assistance, initiative is a sign of an achiever.

2) Passion for Marketing – Of course, you want an intern that loves what they are being hired to do. While they are still getting their feet wet in terms of practical work experience, someone who is on top of trends, gets excited about new clients and seeing work come to life, is key. Especially, if you are a business to business company. You can meet many students, who love B2C, but do they love B2B, it’s a different mindset.

3) Eagerness to Learn – They need to be willing to learn . . . and learn a lot. And show they want to move beyond the theory of textbooks to gain in depth knowledge and experience in a variety of marketing tactics and tools. Being open to using platforms, whether it be CRM, Marketing Automation, Email, Social Media, is critical, it makes them more valuable and allows you as a company to give them opportunities to develop.

4) Willingness to Embrace the Unknown – While we can describe the activities that they will be responsible for, you need an intern who can be flexible and adaptable to changing demands and needs. For small companies that are growing, priorities can shift. And look for someone who is willing to step into unknown situations and figure it out.

5) Team Player – And last but certainly not least, look for a team player. Someone who wants to immerse themselves in your business – and forges relationships with staff and aligns with your culture. It makes for a more positive, productive and ultimately more rewarding experience (for you and the intern).

That first intern has now lead to three –and we’re excited to see what they will deliver.

For information on other government programs that support marketing, click here.

Topics: General Business

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