Hello, my name is Lydia and I graduated this summer from Durham University where I studied Arabic and Spanish. Whilst studying at Durham and after my third year living abroad, I set up a personal blog dedicated to travel writing. This later transformed into The Foody Girl, a blog dedicated to World Food recipes and inspired by my travels in the Middle East and Morocco.

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My passion for my blog and the everyday running of it drew my attention to the exciting world of digital marketing. From there I began searching for opportunities with a company that would enable me to learn more about SEO, Google Analytics and keywords- terms I’d been very briefly introduced to through my blog. Ultimately, I want to gain experience and determine whether a career in digital marketing would be right for me.

I contacted Ultimate and had a meeting with Charlotte (Head of Client Services) and Emma (Head of Digital Marketing). They clearly saw my enthusiasm and eagerness to learn, so offered me an initial placement of two weeks with the digital marketing team. At the end of the two weeks, and after receiving fantastic feedback from the digital marketers as well as from the Design, Development and Account Management teams, I was asked to continue my internship and stay till Christmas. Needless to say, I happily accepted.

During my first two weeks, I learnt that marketing involves a whole host of abbreviations, which seemed quite daunting at first when my colleagues casually mentioned them…. However, after some research and gradual familiarisation I realised that I was quickly coming to terms with the technical vocabulary and acquiring more knowledge everyday.

In my initial two weeks with the Ultimate team, they made sure I really got stuck in to everyday agency work which was great. I started by creating engaging content for client blogs, landing pages as well as the Ultimate website. Putting the inbound methodology that I had learned about into practice, I created Pillar and Cluster pages using Hubspot. I also carried out monthly digital marketing reports by researching client’s website traffic using Google Analytics.

During this period I had individual meetings with a member of each team, which was a great way to understand more about the business and the different components of individual campaigns. The web development team taught me the difference between design-led vs functional systems, the advantage of designing websites mobile-first and how they create custom plugins for clients. Whilst I didn’t entirely get my head around the code, I bonded with Beau (one of our developers) about our shared love of fattoush salad (a Syrian dish). Food really does bring people together! I sat in on various client meetings and even offered my own suggestions on possible social-media campaigns. I attended a card-sorting workshop where we planned the navigation for a client’s website, assisted in the creation of wireframes and carried out keyword research for a pitch.

 A real highlight of my time at Ultimate so far was bouncing along  happily on the inflatables and shivering with the rest of the team at the Manley Mere Aquapark. This week I got involved with the team’s Bake-Off,when I brought along Moroccan themed Tahini brownies and pistachio, cherry and coconut cake.

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My experience here at Ultimate has been excellent. I feel like I have already settled in and greatly deepened my understanding of marketing methodology and strategies. In the future I hope to assist on client campaigns and learn more about inbound methodology and branding. 

I want to thank all the staff at Ultimate for welcoming me into the team, and for wanting to keep me too!

Written by Lydia Daniels September of 2018