What are some of your key takeaways from your time at ThoughtSpark so far?
KB: “Eight months ago, I had no experience of working in marketing so there has been a lot to learn. I’ve been surprised by how varied my workload can be, from writing articles or social media posts one day to building a press list or conducting research for clients the next.
Working on the Health and Life Sciences team has seen me build a depth of knowledge on a range of subjects including sustainability in the pharmaceutical industry, medical device design, in-vitro diagnostic regulations and community diagnostic centres. As my knowledge of these topics has developed, I’ve become better at identifying clients aims – ensuring I structure my work appropriately to achieve their goals”.
CN: “There is so much effort that goes into every piece of content we create, from conception to publication. Not forgetting client relations as well – the importance of picking up a phone and calling someone cannot be understated, and the relationships you forge will only help you further down the line.
Our clients are involved in so many industries, from financial services and manufacturing to sustainability and legal tech, therefore I would add that one of the biggest challenges that comes with content creation is making sure you’re up to date with the latest industry news. Before any content is drafted it’s imperative that you have the appropriate knowledge base, which requires dedicated research. Although it can be time consuming, it’s so important, and I’ve learnt so much from it.”
What have been your best moments?
KB: “Achieving a commission for a client or seeing your finished work published is immensely satisfying – particularly if it’s a new publication you haven’t worked with before. Moreover, it’s been great to build meaningful connections with my colleagues here at ThoughtSpark as well as clients and journalists at various publications.”
CN: “I would have to say the peak of my ThoughtSpark career so far is being the reigning champion of the daily team quiz…Coming in as a close second though would be securing coverage in a top tier industry publication for one of our clients. What makes this a proud moment for me is I was able to use a relationship I had cultivated to bypass the usual editorial application process, therefore fast-tracking our content straight to publication.”
Where have you faced challenges?
KB: “I’ve never been a naturally organised person so I’ve had to work hard on this since joining ThoughtSpark. I’ve developed processes and routines to ensure I manage my workload effectively and prioritise the most important task. Another key challenge has been learning about complex technical subjects and understanding how client’s expertise relate. As always, I’ve been superbly supported by the wider team here at ThoughtSpark who have helped me get quickly up to speed.”
CN: “A particular piece of coverage that I was placing required a lot of work in terms of editorial requests and client management. It was an important article as it was proposed to be a cover story for a print magazine, so required me to communicate effectively through frequent phone calls and emails with both the client and the journalist to facilitate the placement. It took time and effort, but it was extremely rewarding to pull off, and also massively helped me develop my relationship management skills.”
What are your focuses for development moving forward?
KB: “I want to continue to improve my writing abilities, ensuring my tone and style is appropriate for each piece of work. Luckily, ThoughtSpark is always keen for us to pursue professional development opportunities which will benefit us and the wider team. Additionally, I’m always looking to further my knowledge of topics of interest to our clients and ensure I’m ready to provide quality content when necessary.”
CN: “I’m grateful that the company encourages us to undertake professional development courses, which I have already taken advantage of. I’m looking forward to undertaking more courses and furthering my skills in digital marketing and content creation. It’s a really great feeling being supported in developing my skills in small business marketing, especially as a newcomer to the industry. If you’re also new to the industry or looking to get in and you’d like to hear more about my experience, then feel free to connect with me on LinkedIn and drop me a message!”
KB: “And me too!”