My Berkeley journey: from in-house marketing to agency life
I joined Berkeley Communications at the start of the year. I had recently decided to leave an in-house marketing role and pass on a new opportunity, focusing instead on freelance work until I found a permanent role that felt right.
Turning down an opportunity felt like a risk, but one worth taking. As famous Pulitzer winning writer, Annie Dillard, said, ‘How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives’.
Given that the average Brit spends about 85,000 hours of their life at work, and for many that figure is much higher, you want to be sure that what you do for a job satisfies you or helps you achieve a role that does.
Why the move?
As someone at the beginning of her career, I wanted to find a role that offered opportunities for growth and a workplace that recognised the value of investing in training and resources for employees’ development. I also wanted to find a place with a supportive, kind, and social team that included people from whom I could also learn.
Working in an in-house marketing role meant becoming familiar with only a single brand’s voice that, after a while, became almost second nature. Some companies focus on particular kinds of content, in my case it was social media, and I yearned for a greater breadth of content and missed longer form material that felt stimulating.
I liked the idea of working for an agency that was fast-paced and serviced multiple clients with different voices, brand personalities, and messaging goals. A place that offered the exciting buzz that surrounds the attainment of a new client, interactions with new people, and the ability to work with businesses to develop their story.
The first thing that captured my attention about Berkeley Communications was its focus on storytelling. Increasingly, companies and digital marketing agencies focus primarily on the metrics, KPIs, SEO etc. While these do matter, the best marketing is born out of great storytelling. These figures and metrics are useful tools for ensuring your story gets the attention you want and understanding which stories are performing well and which are underperforming. However, as any worthwhile digital marketing or SEO course will teach, it is quality of content that is king – and great storytelling is the foundation.
As a voracious reader with a journalism background, storytelling has always been important to me, so I was excited when I came across a company that shared that value. Being an agency, I knew Berkeley Communications would naturally have a varied client list, which was appealing, but I was even more excited when I looked through some of its campaign examples, which showed creativity and out of the box thinking.
The blog, which I am excitedly getting to write for now, positioned Berkeley Communications as a thought leader in its sector. By freely offering valuable tools and information that other companies and marketers can utilise to enhance their performance, it showcases its expertise and confidence in what it does. While I already have experience in the content development space, I am aware that I am starting out and there is still a lot to learn – and this seemed like a great place for just that.
However, one of the most important things for me when I was looking for a role was my prospective environment. I have worked in places that were clearly home to a supportive team and places that were not, and as many of us know, that greatly impacts how you feel about your place of work and whether you want to be there for the long haul. With Berkeley, from my initial contact with the Head of HR, to my interviews, to eventually meeting my new team once I joined, my experiences have been nothing but positive in what has been a welcoming, encouraging, and supportive environment. Further, everyone who I have met is happy to be part of the Berkeley community and is committed to serving their clients well, which says a lot about any company.
How has it been?
While it has only been a few weeks, so far working at Berkeley Communications has exceeded my expectations. I felt immediately part of the team. I was trusted with real responsibilities and tasks within my first week. My line manager is great with giving feedback and regularly checking in, which makes the onboarding process with a new company much more seamless. You are made to feel comfortable asking questions. It is clear that Berkeley cares about what you are interested in and where you want to go, which adds a greater sense of purpose to what you are doing. By feeling part of a team, you feel like you are contributing to something.
Berkeley Communications operates at a fast-pace, and it’s fun and exciting. Every day brings something different – whether that’s new clients or types of content. Writing for an agency that specialises in tech was not something I was especially seeking out, but with a background in financial writing and studying politics and economics, I have found it relevant to today’s headlines and an interesting subject area to work in.
If you’re thinking of joining Berkeley Communications, bring your enthusiasm, be prepared to dive in and ask questions, and get ready to be a part of a wonderful community.