Stephanie Kung is currently a rising sophomore at Boston University studying Advertising and Business Administration (with a concentration in Marketing) as well as a minor in Innovation and Entrepreneurship. She is passionate about marketing and advertising and aspires to be a marketing executive at a luxury fashion house in the future. This is Stephanie's first full-time internship, however, on the side, she is also a research editor for HYPEBEAST, so she definitely has a lot to share!
Q: We’ve done a little LinkedIn search on you and noticed that this is your first full-time internship. How has you experience as an intern at Meltwater been and how has it differed from your previous internships?
Meltwater enforces a fun and collaborative working culture, while I worked rather independently in my previous internships. When I first stepped into the office, I saw flat tables and a mini football field in front of me. Each team shares one long table together, instead of having cubicles that confine individuals to their own space. And from then I already knew that Meltwater wasn’t the typical company. The open space encourages social and formal interaction.
I was able to work not only alongside other interns, but also people from the talent acquisition and client success team. My seniors were all very willing to share their experience in technology, social and PR analytics with me too, this made collaborative tasks more
enjoyable and inspiring. Age doesn’t provide any sort of communication
barrier at Meltwater, I find that everyone is friendly and I am comfortable with everyone. Moreover, I have learnt a lot of soft skills that I am sure will inform my professional career, such as teamwork, problem solving, communication skills and time management.
Meltwater really is committed to developing one’s potential through various types of training and exposure to real work. Here, I was trained through a structured program with online lessons, in-person training to business call shadowing. The collaborative culture has also encouraged me to work closely with seniors. And from that, I’ve also been able to receive constructive feedback for my tasks. Notably, I noticed much improvement in my market research skills where my work has been delivered directly to clients, helping them identify business challenges
and how to overcome them. As a result, I’ve noticed much advancement in my soft and hard skills.
I was trained in a structured program, from online lessons, in-person training to business call shadowing. For every task, the collaborative culture allows me to receive constructive and instant feedback from the seniors. As a result, I experience a steep learning curve and quickly improve my soft and hard skills.
Last but not least, I had the chance to coordinate different employer branding campaigns, such as revamping the career website and devising LinkedIn posts to share our employee stories. I believe my work will create a lasting impact at Meltwater where my efforts will contribute to attracting talent to join Meltwater.
Meltwater really is committed to developing one’s potential through various types of training and exposure to real work.
Q: As a year 1 student intern, how has your internship at Meltwater shaped your views on your future career? How have you adapted to working with seniors in the office?
I’ve always been interested in the advertising and communications industry. I learnt a lot about the traditional methods and different theories in school, however, working at Meltwater has opened a whole new perspective of sales and marketing to me, I also got to have a taste of the media intelligence industry. It is fascinating to see how Meltwater has transformed the routine tasks of media monitoring and analytics less cumbersome for the PR and Communications team by providing a real-time, all-in-one platform. By tracking the media mentions online, brands can manage their sales and marketing strategies more effectively.
Furthermore, I have been able to explore my career aspirations through interacting with the clients across different industries. I have learnt about business needs that companies of different industries have and how to strategize a successful marketing and PR strategy with our solutions. For example, fashion clients care a lot about the performance of the marketing efforts, while real-estate clients care more about tracking news that are more internal, including news mentions relating to their brand or executives which may affect their investor relations and reputation. I find that I now have a clearer picture of what I am interested in pursuing for a future career and I’ve also been able to observe the different skills I need in order to thrive in whatever industry.
The seniors at Meltwater, particularly my team leader, always gave me tips on my career development as well. During the first few days, I was of course a bit intimidated. However, I soon realized that there isn’t really a hierarchy at the office and everyone here was all very approachable and fun both during and after working hours. Although their schedules were always hectic and super packed, they were always willing to spare some time to address my queries. Most importantly, they would give me advice on my career and life in general as well. I think this really exhibits how people at Meltwater genuinely care, not only as an employee, but as a person too.
I have learnt about business needs that companies of different industries have and how to strategize a successful marketing and PR strategy with our solutions.
Q: Now that you have worked here for a while, what elements of Meltwater’s company culture would you like in your future workplace?
I like that people here are young and friendly. It makes it easier to make friends and learn about each other. I see that every team meets in the morning and lunchtimes too to share their work progress and see how they can enhance their performance. Everyone is very driven and self-motivated. There is always someone who’s on call with a client any time of the day in the office and no one ever slacks off. I also hope that my future workplace would have a standing desk and a view overlooking the Victoria Harbour like at Meltwater.
Q: What are your tips on how to gain trust from seniors, so you can have more learning opportunities?
Firstly, be transparent about what you understand and what you don’t understand. The worst case is for someone to assume you can do something and end up having to spend more time on it because you were not informed properly. To avoid wasting time with back-and-forth clarifications, you should always be honest about your strengths and weaknesses. By doing this, seniors can teach you what you don’t know and you can also help them with what you are skilled at. You should also let them know what your interests and passions are, then you can be assigned tasks that are more aligned with your preferences.
Secondly, always ask if you aren’t clear on your responsibilities, especially when you are still present in a call or face-to-face meeting. I don’t really think there is such thing as a useless question, anything that can avoid misunderstanding and mistakes is worth asking. However, it’s not the end of the world either if you make a mistake; just learn from it and fix it. Also, everyone at Meltwater is very willing to help.
So tip is to always reiterate what you have understood from a task to make sure what I will do will be up to people’s expectations and requests.
Lastly, always be open for new opportunities. Whenever seniors ask for help, make sure you finish that task well and take full wonder ship. After you finish it, always report to them proactively and offer help in the future, don’t be shy about asking to be involved in projects. In the end, you will be the sole benefiter. Seniors will offer you more interesting tasks and learning opportunities to sharpen your skills. Then, they’ll notice your potential and gradually start naturally approaching you for joining business calls to creating dashboards to providing insight reports to clients. Always stay open to opportunities. When the seniors approach you with different tasks, it is important to finish the tasks well and have real ownership of the tasks. After you finish one task, always proactively report your work status and don’t be shy to ask for more tasks.
To avoid wasting time with back-and-forth clarifications, you should always be honest about your strengths and weaknesses.
Q: As a Talent Acquisition Intern, did you have any chances to get involved in other business related tasks?
Yes! I was given opportunities to participate in a plethora of business tasks, such as data cleaning, market research and boolean searches for different clients. Not to mention I really like fashion and my seniors actually gave me a lot of opportunities to get involved with such clients
and conduct market research and competitor analysis for them. I never thought that my research on how a brand is performing in different regions and how they can localize their advertising would be presented to executives that oversee a brand’s APAC operations. From such tasks, I was able to comprehend the power of media analytics. A single “like” on a brand ambassador's post or a comment on a promotional post on Facebook all amount to
and are able to inform a company’s business decisions. I am truly taken aback by how tiny pieces of information scattered across the internet can be congregated and be incorporated in decision making.
Q: What was the most exciting task you've been involved in at Meltwater?
I did market research for a global fashion brand on their marketing strategy in the Korean market. I took particular interest in this because I am a Kpop fan myself and I do fairly like the brand itself. For the research task, I went through their regional social media accounts and related hashtags as well as look into their competitor’s online activities. After, I composed a comprehensive media performance report based on the insights I’ve gathered as well as my existing knowledge of the Korean market. I found that localising your marketing efforts is incredibly important for global brands since one advertising campaign doesn’t fit all audiences and regions.
I found that localising your marketing efforts is incredibly important for global brands since one advertising campaign doesn’t fit all audiences and regions.
Q: How has your perception of media analytics and intelligence changed?
I used to think that media monitoring was a rather trivial thing but it is actually much more prominent than I ever expected. I never knew my minor actions on social media, combined with other people’s minor actions could amount to something that would inform digital marketing and product development decisions. I also thought that media monitoring was something that was rather invasive, however, through using Meltwater’s platforms, I’ve come to realize that that it could be an innocent process of simply collecting information online.
I also believe that the media analytics and intelligence is a booming industry as social media is commonly used by the public. With Meltwater being one of the earliest to enter the field, I do think we have the experience to adapt and engineer solutions for any new social media platforms and add value to our clients. Meltwater is continuously innovating to rise above the trend and provide the values of social analytics from all perspectives.
I thought that media monitoring was something that was rather invasive. However, I’ve come to realize that that it could be an innocent process of simply collecting information already available online.
Q: What tips do you have for any aspiring Meltwater interns and how to be a successful intern in general?
My internship has definitely not been a traditional one. You have to be outspoken, proactive and detail minded.
Here, you will be given real responsibilities and interact with clients directly to present your work. Don’t be afraid to raise questions since everyone here is really nice and willing to help. So, be proactive and reach out! It is very important to step out of the comfort zone, maintain communication with managers and think beyond what you're asked to do to add value to your work.
This could be thinking of a new business idea or selecting interesting articles that clients might be interested in knowing about. You will learn more than what you expect when you are willing to take initiative.