Natalie Darlison (Marketing Manager)
Attended St Brendan's 2001 - 2003
After St Brendan's I went on to University in Plymouth: The College of St Marks and St Johns. Deciding which University to attend was quite an overwhelming experience. I wanted to continue studying both of the courses I enjoyed most in college (an academic and creative subject). There weren't many universities that offered that exact course at the time – there were a number of creative writing, English literature or media studies options, but none were combined. After visiting 3 universities, I fell in love with Marjons immediately, especially as I was able to study Media Studies with English Language and Linguistics. I liked that it was smaller than most Universities and had a community feel. Overall I received a 2:1 bachelor degree and celebrated at the graduation ball with Rik Astley DJ-ing and singing along to Baywatch (like every student of my generation).
Currently I work as a marketing manager for a digital content agency in London. It took me a while to find my perfect job... I wanted to do something creative originally (to make adverts). However, after having a few administration jobs in creative agencies, I realised that account management would be better suited - coming up with the ideas and then making sure that the job gets done and deadlines are met.
When I saw a position for marketing exec at Sticky Content I immediately applied for it as it combined both of my University subjects. Every day I'm surrounded by intelligent creative people, who write fantastic copy for some big brands. Now as marketing manager I get to spend my time promoting the agency, our people and work. It's such a varied role – I get to incorporate my creative skills in branding, content marketing, idea generation or pitching for new business and my English background in producing marketing emails, blog articles and website copy etc.
It's not exactly where 15year old me planned to be (designing print ads for Cornetto), but I have a position in the largely growing creative and digital industry.
St Brendan's helped me grow in many ways - although it seems like such a long time ago, I remember there being a lot of support in helping to take those next steps; such as completing University applications/cover letters, talks from previous students and general advice. But mostly to achieve the grades needed to get into my chosen university.
Working in a content agency, we get a lot of job applications. A piece of advice for someone who wants a career in the creative industry is to demonstrate what you can offer in a form applicable to that position. For example, if you want to make adverts, why not send you cover letter as an advert of you... Or you want to work in email marketing, send you cover letter as a html email. Want to be an author? Send you CV as a hard back book. Applying for a copywriting position? Do not haveany spelling errors. This can apply for any industry to be honest – applying for a scientific job? Create an 'about me' periodic table to go with the application.
If you don't get a position, it's not the end of the world, get feedback and learn from the experience. Finally, do what you can to stand out, make your mark and be memorable.
In ten years’ time I hope to be in a job that continues to invest in developing my skills and talents; somewhere that I can see progression and where I am content. You spend so much of your life at work, you have to enjoy it. This is how I measure my own success.