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Transform’s marketing career tips: What we wish we knew

Typical marketing career tips often suggest diving headfirst into this intense, fast-paced industry through learning as much as you can. Create a side hustle, spend your evenings learning about SEO, try to cram in all the acronyms until you fall asleep in front of your laptop (don’t ask which Transform team member did this…). But it doesn’t have to be this way.  

 At Transform, we believe in productive, healthy careers where you grow successfully without the burnout. Using your existing skills and prioritising your wellbeing. Here’s what we wish we knew before we started our marketing careers.  

1 Know your skills – even if you don’t think they’re in PR and marketing

Sally, Senior Client Lead

I wish I’d known that I had transferrable skills relevant to the industry and that my eagerness to learn new things didn’t have to just relate to outof-work activities. I have learnt so much in my three months with Transform and I am loving it. Noticing how people can see trends and predict what’s going to come next is inspiring and something I aspire to be able to do. 

2. Find out what marketing means to you

Ellen, Senior Client Lead

“Marketing isn’t just writing copy – it’s spreadsheets, budgeting, planning. Knowing a bit of theory behind marketing strategy is useful, whether through the CIPR (Chartered Institute of PR), CIM (Chartered Institute of Marketing) or elsewhere. There are so many different facets of marketing, so if one bit doesn’t suit you, there are lots of others to explore. And lots of resources to help you in that segment. 

 And remember that people make the experience. The work is hard but the people make it great!” 

3. Stretch your legs – physically and metaphorically

Izzy, Content Writer

 “Metaphorically: don’t be afraid to stretch yourself. There are so many tasks that I’ve been nervous about – presenting to clients, hitting ‘send’ on an email to a thousand people, sending my first white paper to a client. But I know that if I do make a mistake, the team has my back. That gives me the confidence to embrace the things that make me nervous.” 

4. Understand the value of feedback 

Karolyn, Head of Content

“Feedback is a gift. It shows that a person cares enough to help you learn and develop. Without it you are likely to repeat the same mistakes. Don’t be afraid of feedback – take it and use it! Jo Maddocks’ excellent book Emotional Intelligence @ Work was a lightbulb moment on this. As well as colleagues who showed me that it’s possible to give feedback in a considered way that is genuinely constructive. 

 And don’t be scared to give feedback as well as receive it. In marketing, it is your job to share your opinion and your expertise. However, it’s okay to do it in a way that makes you feel comfortable/authentic. It is possible to be challenging and direct without being a dick about it. Again, working with people who made it clear they value my opinion and won’t be offended by feedback has helped with this.” 

5. Cultivate your personal skills 

Ronnie, Founder and Managing Director

“PR is a fast-paced industry, and you need to make sure that your skills allow you to keep pace with it. Flexibility, curiosity and honesty will take you a long way.  

 Take the opportunity to learn wherever and whenever, always asking the key question, ‘Why?’ You need to know your clients’ sectors as well as your own, so invest the time to grapple with different industries. And don’t be afraid to bring your past experiences and knowledge into meetings – they are valuable. Build credibility through knowledge, however you accrue it. 

 In short, pay attention and build relationships. Your role is to be a bridge between yourself and the world – don’t burn it (or burn out) before you can realise your full potential.”  

6. Open your mind – and other people’s 

Richard, Account Director

“Keep an open mind, become a good listener, remain calm in adversity and open to new ideas and practices. Not even experts know everything, and age does not necessarily make you wise… Being objective and having perspective is more important! Learn about different industries and perspectives. 

 And share what you learn with your colleagues. Be supportive, kind and helpful, and the skills you grow in sharing this knowledge (communication, patience, presentation) will be useful.  

 Above all, aim for life contentment and balance. Do things that make you happy.” 

If you’re interested in a career in the Marketing and PR industry, or think that your skills could fit but don’t know where to start, get in touch with us today. We’d be happy to chat with you through any number of our team’s roles and careers.  

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