Marketing Students Ignite brand insights

Anoroc recently had the privilege of giving a tour to students from The Living Arts College in Raleigh. As this was our first time hosting a field trip for aspiring graphic designers and marketers, we were not certain of how the meeting would unfold. As 10 students, led by Professor Vincent Gardner, nervously shuffled into our agency. I was immediately reminded of the intrigue and unease that I experienced upon walking into Anoroc for the first time. I also thought back to my preconceived notions of what “agency life” would be like. Visions of cocktails, crazy clients, and walls bursting with creativity danced in my head.

The students were very eager to learn about the day-to-day workings of an agency, asking lots of questions and fact checking. Deborah and Alex put their knowledge to the test and flawlessly executed the somewhat impromptu seminar. One of the interesting take-aways of the experience came when Professor Gardner mentioned to our staff that he was trying to enforce the value of research. “I’m trying to reinforce the idea that a significant portion of agency work consists of research”, he said. This really hit home for me personally. Like many of the students that day, I believed that as an employee of an advertising firm, I would be writing copy, directing ads and “doing” social media. I didn’t fully understand how much time was needed for research or how crucial it was to the success of each campaign, tagline or media buy. As each employee talked a bit about their day, it seemed the students were getting a feel for the not so glamorous truth behind the romanticism that is portrayed in shoes like “Mad Men” or “The Pitch”. While there are many exciting parts of the ad industry, it’s not all fun ‘n games and there is a significant amount of hard work and planning is common place in each successful agency.

As the students began to shuffle out it became clear how easily misunderstood the industry can be to outsiders, whether that be students, prospective employees, or even clients. Though anecdotal, I think this experience has proved the importance of a close relationship to those who are “just outside” our industry.