At marketing, that is. “So, can you look over my Instagram feed? I heard you’re the social media expert here.”
Lost in Space
As co-op comes to a close with only one and a half weeks left, I’m thrown into a pensive and reflective state.
It was only a year ago, studying for my Grade 11 chemistry and biology exams, when I realized the mismatch between me and science. Sure, science helps us understand the world. Sure, science can save lives. But I couldn’t imagine spending the next 50 years of my life working at a lab to analyze the workings of subatomic particles, which remained unseen by the naked eyes of most people within their lifespans. It seemed pointless to me.
Finding my Niche
That same semester, for the first time, I enrolled in a sector-specific business course: marketing. Amidst the textbook-centric powerpoints and the multiple choice based tests, I found my true calling through the design projects that called for innovative ideas. I loved the versatility of marketing, but I also loved it’s practicality. I loved the freedom to experiment, but I also loved it’s capacity for concrete analysis through numbers. I loved the creative design aspects, but I also loved it’s backbone of sociological knowledge.
Marketing encompasses all my passions—graphic design, photography, psychology, and more—into one field. For a learning enthusiast like me, this means stimulating both my critical thinking and content-creation skills.
Sure, we never got to go to Pacific Mall as hoped. But my experience at co-op has been so much more.
I collaborated with my peers and Charlotte to execute the company’s marketing plan. I pushed myself to learning new programs and terms: CRM, Lightroom, Zoho, Hootsuite, Slack. I developed interest in other art aspects, like illustration and animation, in the process of furthering my marketing skills. I discovered my strengths and weaknesses in not only the marketing field, but the working world as well.
Going Above and Beyond
Furthermore, I was given the freedom to create and the opportunity to incite impact. I introduced innovative ideas to Charlotte about optimizing technology, including, but not limited to, BlogTO, LinkedIn video, and Instagram’s price tag tool. She graciously let me streamline the company’s brand identity, experiment with various graphic styles, and re-vamp the company’s Instagram feed, all while accommodating my questions and encouraging me in every way. Designing graphics from scratch on Adobe Illustrator, I utilized different layouts in hopes of synonymizing the company with innovation. I drew inspiration from design trends used by leading companies like Deloitte and Apply to re-brand the company’s logos, templates, and graphic style, and I defined the visual typeface and photo filter to be used. We tried out new social media strategies like Gary Vaynerchuk’s $1.80 strategy. As a result, we saw spikes in the company’s engagement rates and an elevation of the company’s brand image.
More importantly, whether it be through sharing laughter, teaching the floss, or asking uncommon questions, I developed relationships with many talented individuals who continuously inspire me to work hard and to pursue my passion.
Ending with a Bang
Co-op was filled with many firsts—first business-centered work experience, first portfolio website, first business card, first time event photographing, first template redesign, first hosting of an informational workshop, first personal brand development, first time forming a client list. The experience has truly been unforgettable.
I wish Charlotte, my fellow co-op students, and the rest of The Hive members all the best with their ventures in this journey called life. Cheers! Keep in touch <3