Getting your hands on real work early on goes a long way when starting out in the industry. This week, Caroline McLoughlin and Nick Zanetti of Ad 2 DC share one way to flex your skills on real clients, while meeting other ad professionals in your area and doing some good for your community. It's a win-win-win. Here's Caroline and Nick—
For young professionals in advertising, Ad 2 is a great place to expand your network and skillsets. One of the things that sets Ad 2 apart is its annual Public Service Campaign. Each year, teams from across the nation put together fully integrated marketing campaigns for local nonprofits. For emerging leaders, the Public Service Campaign empowers people to think outside-the-box with a limited budget, and to take their craft to the next level. Our team at Ad 2 DC reached out to our members to learn about their experience supporting some of DC’s finest local nonprofits.
1) Why should someone participate in a public service campaign?
This committee attracts members from different walks of life with two main purposes—to get to know their community and enhance their skillsets. Whether you’re looking to break into the world of advertising or are a seasoned professional, supporting Ad 2’s Public Service Campaign gives you the ability to become well-versed in agency-related crafts.
2) What was your favorite part of being a Public Service team member?
Working closely with local nonprofits that address important causes. You really get to experience how appreciative people are of your work, and that alone inspires you to go above and beyond their expectations. You also learn how to be scrappy, and work with many local vendors to accomplish your goals.
3) Why do you think it’s important for advertising professionals to get involved in their community?
It's important for people to meet and engage with key community members in the city in which they live. Many times, you don't get to hand pick your clients, so having the flexibility to choose a nonprofit client whose values align with yours makes it that much more exciting.
4) How does working with a limited budget affect your strategy?
You have to take a step back to fully understand your team and how it plays a significant role when you select a client. For example, you'd want a creative-heavy team if the client has a solid strategy, but needs help flexing their creative muscle. Working with a small budget also makes you approach each problem with a “grassroots” mindset. By doing so, you get to think about where each dollar will take your campaign, instead of dumping a bunch of money into a project and letting it work itself out.
5) What opportunities arise from working with nonprofit clients?
You get the chance to explore all areas of advertising. You also have the responsibility of presenting your work in front of your client and at a national competition, which is something a lot of folks in entry-level or intern positions aren’t able to do.
For many of us in Washington DC, Ad 2 has been a gateway into the advertising industry. If you’re an emerging professional, we encourage you to join your local Ad 2 Chapter to propel your career forward. Head on over to Ad 2 National’s website to find out how you can get involved!
You got this,
Caroline, Nick and Ad 2 DC