Working in a SME
Roles and responsibility
Since joining luxury womenswear brand, Winser London, last June, there has not been a day where my actions have not had an effect on the company - large or small! As current Marketing, PR & Social Media Associate, my main responsibilities cover: the daily management of social media activity; close communication with the Marketing Manager to develop online and offline strategies; and the analysis of relevant data, which is then reported to senior members of our team.
Although at first the responsibility in your role may seem daunting, settling in will happen, whether this is immediate or over time. For me, it took a month or so before I really got the hang of things, but once settled, I was confidently contributing my ideas and suggestions, involving myself in other areas of the business, such as retail and design. Working in an SME means easy communication between different departments, so potentially, you could have an impact on the business as a whole - exciting indeed!
First-experience is what I love most about my role, and is another benefit of working for an SME. Early opportunities and a varied workload allows you to make a real contribution from the get-go, which is definitely a motivating factor to getting your jobs done! A more thorough understanding of your role and the company as a whole also encourages your creative and individual flair for approaching problems.
Taking ownership of the social media has been invaluable in expanding my knowledge of digital marketing. While previously ignorant of terms such as PPC and SEO, and oblivious to the world of Facebook and Instagram advertising, my responsibility in its daily management has allowed me to action strategies learnt from digital marketing lectures, in order to create engaging content - targeted at the right consumer, at the right time!
Such experience has showed me that social media goes way beyond the odd Instagram post with quirky caption, and instead expands into a world of analytics and sponsored ads; highly useful for our growing, digitally-focused world, where data interpretation and analysis play the key driver behind many digital marketing campaigns.
Winser London's fifth year anniversary last March allowed me to get creative with digital ideas for our celebrations, which were listened to and actioned by senior members of the team. As a digitally-based company, many of these celebrations were held across our social media channels, including a #FiveDaysFivePrizes campaign on Instagram and our first ever Facebook livestream, a Q&A session between beauty journalist Samantha Freedman and our Founder & CEO, which was organised and filmed by myself.
Preparing your direction after graduation
Despite originally focusing my applications towards large, consumer-good companies, working in a different sector than planned has been hugely beneficial in mapping out where I would like to work after university. Fast paced yet sometimes challenging, a year in fashion has engaged and excited me - and has definitely sparked an interest to pursue this industry after graduation!
From helping to achieve editorial coverage in magazines and newspapers, sending press samples to Holly Willoughby’s stylist, through to the execution of press days and blogger events, I have loved my experience in a sector I never imagined to lay my placement. I will however add, that although my time here has been amazing - and the first-hand experience gained has been second to none - working in an SME has me interested to explore life in a larger company, particularly within a larger team.
Prior to Sophie's placement at Winser London, another Royal Holloway Management student, Victoria Taylor completed a Digital Marketing placement with Winser London. You can read more here: https://www.linkedin.com/in/victoria-taylor-46820a97/
We are also delighted that another Royal Holloway Management student, Emelie Udehn , will start a 12 month placement with Winser London as Sophie's placement finishes.