Welcome to the YOakleyPR Intern Spotlight Series!
In this intern update, we introduce you to Elizabeth Olmstead who previously interned at YOakleyPR as a Graphic Design Intern from May until November 2015. Since her virtual internship ended, Elizabeth continues to leave her mark in the world of design through Lizardbreath Designs.
How did you enter this field?
I first learned what Graphic Design was from a cousin of mine who was visiting who is also a Graphic Designer. My introduction to Graphic Design before he defined it was me playing an online game in which we could create and upload our own designed images. This game taught me the basics in Graphic Design while being fun and educational.
What has your career path been like?
My career path has been interesting in the last few years, I have become a certified digital print press operator and a popup banner designer. I have analyzed hard data collected, predicted customer spending trends, and completed cost per click analysis for email campaigns, and generating from the ground up re-engagement campaigns.
Could you tell us more about your current position and how did you come to the company? What is your current job title?
My current position is a creative marketing specialist within a marketing department of a medium sized company. I was hired on to increase their conversions and leads, as well as solidify their brand voice. They are currently a B2B company and looking to break into the B2C demographic.
Can you provide a brief description of your job?
My job description is sort of all over the place since it’s a small company no one marketing person can be specialized. We all need to have a working knowledge of print, web, marketing.
What kind of problems do you deal with and what are the decisions that you make?
Problems I run into are juggling multiple projects and making sure the brand’s voice is cohesive across multiple verticals.
What do you enjoy the most about your current role and what do you think is the most challenging tasks/projects you have ever done?
The creative freedom, whatever I can dream up to try we can try. The most challenging part of my tasks is finding a solution that is different that makes my boss happy and also keeps to the established voice of the brand.
How do you see this field changing in the future?
I feel that this field will move more and more towards the digital realm. This will lead to more and more graphic designers needing to know marketing and analytics to track how well their generated content is performing. That doesn’t mean that knowledge of print will become extinct. I believe as the profession evolves there will be more and more designers need to know besides good design.
Is there something you wish you had known or a skill you wish you had started out in the graphic design industry?
Something I had wished I had known was that being a good Graphic Designer doesn’t mean you’ll get somewhere, you have to have the drive to keep learning new things; learn analytics, and programming, also learn the basics for marketing and business. Making things look pretty doesn’t mean people will take your advice because it’s logical to you as a designer. Bring more to the table than good design, hard facts and data that back up your claims proven by other companies or projects you’ve worked on first hand.
Is there something you wish you had done differently starting out?
I wish I had taken classes on analytics, business, and marketing instead of classes that were fun for me. Spending time making yourself more valuable to future companies might be tedious and hard but in the end it’s worth it. Let your ambition drive you to learn new things and become the best asset you can be.
Do you have any advice for YOakleyPR Graphic Design interns?
Do everything you are offered. If you are a designer, learn to do PR and Marketing. If you are interns in the other fields learn what’s required to do what the others do. Gain understanding and respect for the fields you aren’t specialized in. Everyone should learn to read and understand data, learn about SEO and SEM, set up campaigns with Keywords and ads. Get the hands on experience that Yasheaka offers to you through these internships they will help you. Take advantage of your peers’ knowledge and teach them what you know as well. You are only as strong as your weakest link, so teach each other and grow stronger together.
How would you advise our Graphic Design interns to plan their future?
I would advise them to do the hard work even if it’s unappealing. You’ll thank yourself later, and while you might feel like it’s uninteresting to you now, figure out how it ties to you, you’ll be better off. I remember feeling like writing a Press Release was tedious, and learning about marketing while interesting I never figured I would need the know how. I also remember going into my last job and realizing how much of what I learned in my internship carried over into this position. In that position, my skills grew and I learned more and more about the aspects of combining graphics with marketing and analytics.
Do you know of an inspirational quote or saying that you would like to share?
A quote I love is: “We are what we do repeatedly, excellence, therefore, is not an act, but a habit.” – Aristotle
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If you would like to learn more about YOakleyPR’s award-winning Virtual Internship Program, please visit our “Internships” page for more information.