Inside with the Interns: Hannah Boakye

We are back again with another post for our ‘Inside with the Interns’ series, where you’ll get to know about Hannah who was our Social Media intern for August and September. We hope you enjoy reading this one.

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Where do I even begin? Cliché- I know but forgive me, it’s been a whirl wind of a summer and I’m still coming to terms with everything that has happened. I have a feeling that this is going to be a LONG one, so if I were you, I would make yourself a cuppa, grab a biscuit and kick back.

I guess the logical place to start this blog post off with would be my graduation in July. After three amazing, but extremely challenging years, I graduated from the University of Sheffield with a Journalism degree and several NCTJ qualifications under my belt. If I thought completing University had been stressful; I was in for a bigger shock. I was about to enter the ‘real world’.

If you’re a final year student or a recent graduate, I’m sure you can imagine how daunting this whole process is. The thought of becoming an adult and leaving behind the luxury of being a student was bittersweet. I would be swapping the long summer breaks for limited annual leave; the two hour lectures for a 9-5 and not to mention having little to no time to binge watch Netflix series. I mean the list goes on.

However, despite my fears and anxiety, it wasn’t all doom and gloom and I actually had something very exciting to look forward too. I was fortunate enough to have lined up an internship with Samphire Communications, which I would be starting in August.

To be completely honest with you I wasn’t sure what to expect. I had completed an internship with a PR company the summer before, but this time I would be carrying out a new role as Samphire’s social media intern.

From day one, I was pretty much thrown into the action and honestly this was the best thing that could have happened. Was I nervous- yes! But, I knew how valuable getting this experience was, so, there was no point sitting awkwardly on the side-lines, I had to get stuck in! Not to mention, there was always someone from the team ensuring that I was on track and comfortable with whatever I was doing, so I never felt abandoned.

One of my main tasks was coming up with ideas and a strategy on how to improve the company’s LinkedIn page and their blog. This was my bread and butter, especially as several of my University modules had involved creating news sites, creating content for them and finding ways to increase traffic and engagement, so I naturally found myself fully immersed in it all.

Aside from this, I was also tasked with creating social media plans for clients, scheduling posts, interacting with their audiences and even had the opportunity to attend a photoshoot-this was probably my favourite part because it meant free food!

Before I knew it, I had been interning for a good three weeks and fully felt like one of the chicks. The commute from Reading to London had grown on me and the busy area of Fitzrovia was becoming familiar to me. So, when I was asked if I would intern until the end of September rather than finish at the end of August, I accepted without hesitation.

My social role continued as usual, but I also now had the responsibilities of the PR intern, meaning my hands were even fuller, but I was super excited to be experiencing the best of both worlds.

As my two months of interning came to an end, one day I was called into a meeting with the big boss- scary! She told me how impressed they had been with the work I had carried out over the past weeks and to my surprise I was offered a permanent position as Social Media Executive!

I couldn’t believe it and sometimes I still have to pinch myself, however, I’m extremely excited and grateful to be able to do what I love every day! My advice for anyone looking for an internship or currently interning would be to make sure that you put 100% into everything you do because you just never know the good that could come from it! I certainly didn’t!

Hannah Boakye

 If you enjoyed this post, keep your eyes peeled for our next one!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Meet the Chicks: Chloe

We are back again with a third post from our Meet the Chicks series and this time you’ll get to know all about our lovely Junior PR Account Manager, Chloe Walden.

Chloe Walden

Chloe Walden

Hi Chloe, let’s start off with you telling us a little bit about yourself.

I’m from all over the place – we moved around a lot when I was a child so I’ve grown up in Surrey, Devon, Essex and Suffolk – and the Normandy in France! Despite having the academic scholarship at my school, I actually decided not to go to university and went straight into a PR apprenticeship which lasted for 12 months, so I was based in an agency in Suffolk during that time. What that also means is I’ve been doing PR for over six years now – scary! In my free time, I volunteer with my local Shelter Boutique, and go through exercise fads – some weeks its running, some its rock climbing… it depends what takes my fancy really!

So what made you actually go into PR?    

I fell into it by accident really. My Mum is the director of a food manufacturing company, and when I was a bit unsure of my next step during my last year of A Levels, the food photographer she used at the time, thought I might enjoy it. I did a few weeks’ work experience, they offered me the apprentice role, and it went from there really.

What excites you most about your job?

I love the variety – of waking up every morning and not quite knowing what you’re going to be facing that day. Growing up in a really foodie environment also means I love finding out about what’s hot, where to eat and what the next big trend is going to be – and this is the perfect place to find out all these things really.

What has been the best client event that you have attended or organised?

Christmas Afternoon Tea in July for a café in Westminster Abbey. It wasn’t the biggest or necessarily the most glamorous of events, but it’s the first one I organised on my own and we managed to get some great press there, so I think it will always be my best one.

Do you have any advice for someone wanting to pursue a career in PR?

Don’t take things too personally. Everyone has bad days in the office, and sometimes you’ll find your pitch to a journalist may just be that one too far for that day. Also, take the time to find out what interests those you’re speaking to on a day-to-day basis – journalists, clients, influencers – everyone really. It’s amazing how much difference having a personalised approach can make.

Who or what inspires you the most?

My Mum and my Aunt. They’re just two awesome, successful, strong women who have approached life with two very different approaches and both ended up having families and incredibly successful careers.

Describe your happy place?

 It would be warm, with a sea view but NOT on the beach itself (I really don’t like sand…) and the food would be freshly cooked but super simple – like BBQ’d fish with coconut rice. Oh, and there would be gin.

Since we are a PR agency specialising in food, it wouldn’t be right to not ask any food questions, so what item of food could you not live without?

Bread and oil – I honestly could live off it.

If you could have dinner with any celebrity, who would it be, why and what meal would you cook them?

I don’t really know – I’m terrible when it comes to celebs at knowing who’s who. Someone super down to earth who would actually enjoy food rather than having to be on a diet – and I would cook a feast of dim sum, noodles, steamed fish… Or Gente de Zona because they are my future husbands even if they don’t know it yet.

And lastly, is a Jaffa cake a cake or a biscuit?

Biscuit.

Samphire xoxo

Inside with the Interns: Roxana Caia

Welcome to our newest series, ‘Inside with the Interns’, where you’ll hear first hand the experiences from the lovely, eager and hard-working individuals who come to work with us.

Our first post of the series starts of with Roxana who was our PR intern for August, we hope you enjoy it.

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Quite dramatic of me to start with ‘by the time you read this article, I will have already left’ but, alas, there comes a time in one’s life…

Never have I ever felt more grown up than I did when I moved to London for five weeks to complete my internship at Samphire this summer. The realisation dawned on me on a morning commute from my apartment in up-and-coming Brixton to our little office in the heart of Fitzrovia – I’ve always been a big city girl, I was born in Bucharest, Romania, so I am used to the buzz and noise of a capital city. And yet, the mere idea that I was on the tube at 9 am on my way to work in London, the most glorious city to ever exist, felt like a major badge of honour.

It’s funny thinking about it in retrospect, but I was actually nervous about what joining Samphire might feel like. Looking back, my expectations and fears feel rather delusional, bordering on The Devil Wears Prada stereotypes about a fast-paced industry that forgives nothing and no one. I had worked in PR before joining Samphire, a fact which the rational side of my brain was desperately trying to reiterate every time I felt myself panicking, and yet all the media talk about the stark differences between the North and South of England provided endless fuel to my panic fire. I was scared I wouldn’t be able to keep up with the rhythm of the city, that I would feel overwhelmed and stuck in a creative rut.

Having finished my five weeks at the agency, I can definitely attest the most valuable experience at Samphire has been proving myself wrong on all the demons I’d constructed prior to my arrival. It may sound underwhelming, but I can’t imagine what my post-graduation career prospects would have sounded like had I not taken the leap of faith of moving to London. There is something truly unique about the way things work around here, the expectations clients have of you, the breadth of profiling opportunities you have to choose from – in short, as cheesy as it may come across, there’s nothing quite as motivational as the endless possibilities that London seems to be offering you on the daily. I never thought I’d hear myself say this, but I am really looking forward to finishing my academic career and finally getting to work full time in this city, I have a feeling I will never get bored of it.

By the time you’re reading this, I will have returned to my UK home of Newcastle, up North. I am about to start my third (and final) year at Newcastle University, doing Media, Communications & Cultural Studies, and the thought of graduating is both terrifying and incredibly thrilling. At the end of the day, I may not have spent my ‘hot girl summer’ travelling around the world, but I actually feel that investing these few months off into my future career was perhaps one of the best decisions I have made in a long time. It turns out there’s life (and hope) after graduation, and I would have likely never known that without this valuable work experience.

Roxana Caia

Meet the Chicks: Claudia

So we are back again with another post from our ‘Meet The Chicks’ series and this time you get to meet our lovely Social Media Executive, Claudia.

Claudia Jones

Claudia Jones

Hi Claudia, let’s start off with you telling us a little bit about yourself.

HI!! My name is Claudia and I am from beautiful Australia. I moved to London almost a year ago and have been on the Samphire team since January. I have a Bachelor of Communications with a major in Public Relations and over 6 year’s experience in the wonderful world of social media. In my spare time you will find me with a facemask on, watching Friends with a pizza slice in hand (the good life!)

So we now know you studied Communications and Public Relations, but how did you actually get into Social Media?

I kind of fell into it really! I was working in PR and branding which meant I was doing a lot of social media and content creation. I fell in love with the creativity and branding side of things so took the leap and started my own social media agency.

 What excites you most about your job?

Being creative and creating content is what I really love, and of course eating at so many amazing places!

Do you have any advice for someone wanting to pursue a career in Social Media Management ?

It’s so important to have your finger on the pulse with what the latest trends are and ALWAYS take every opportunity to learn a new skill – you never know when it could come in handy.

What has been the best client event that you have attended or organised?

The best client event I have ever taken part in is probably the summer garden launch at The Courtyard. They have such a good vibe and know how to throw a party!

Who or what inspires you the most?

Working with likeminded girls really motives and inspires me. I also love staying up-to-date with the latest in the food and beauty world which constantly gets me excited!

Describe your happy place?

FACEMASK + PIZZA + NETFLIX = HAPPY PLACE. I also must say walking through the beauty and skincare aisles make me very very happy too.

Since we are a PR agency specialising in food, it wouldn’t be right to not ask any food questions, so what item of food could you not live without?

CHEESE AND PIZZA.

If you could have dinner with any celebrity, who would it be, why and what meal would you cook them?

I would have to say Emily Weiss of Glossier because she’s a badass business woman and I’ve always followed her journey. I would probably cook her chicken parmigiana and potato bake because it’s BLOODY DELICIOUS!

And lastly,does pineapple belong on Pizza?

YES!!!! You’re lying to yourself if you think it doesn’t!

If you loved reading about our Aussie girl Claudia, make sure you keep your eyes peeled for most posts from the girls.

Also, if you haven’t already make sure you read our first post from the series, all about our PR chick Sophie!

Meet the Chicks: Sophie

Welcome to the first blog post of our ‘meet the chicks’ series. Our team is made up of some amazing girls who we feel you should get to know a little better.

First up is Sophie Fox who is one of senior account executives.

Sophie Fox

Sophie Fox

Hi Sophie, let’s start off with you telling us a little bit about yourself.

I’m originally from Kent, near Bluewater Shopping centre (shopaholic), but as I’m on the boarder I’m always in and out of London. I went to St Mary’s University in Twickenham to study Psychology which I absolutely loved. I toyed with the idea of doing a masters and even almost went on to do a PGCE after doing some teaching, before I fell in love with PR! In my free time I am usually eating out (shock!), playing with my new little kitten or at a gig.

So how did you go from studying psychology to ending up in PR?

I was of the Zoella era, obsessed with beauty blogs, videos; you name it- my Saturday job at Superdrug meant that I was always buying the latest lippy. I remember googling jobs in and around beauty and that’s when I stumbled across PR. I did an internship and loved it. My friend then recommended me a brilliant PR agency where I worked with Waitrose, Lakeland and more and that’s when I became a real foodie, discovering new launches and chefs.  After a few agencies and dabbling with restaurants, I knew my next move had to be into the restaurant PR and marketing industry.

What excites you most about your job?

I would have to say a super passionate client, who knows exactly what they’re offering and do it well. Also just seeing something launch and becoming successful, rave reviews and great journalist feedback never gets old. Especially landing that national!

What has been the best client event that you have attended or organised?

We did an amazing influencer evening at Zela, where their chef did a tuna masterclass- he showed us all the different (raw) cuts, letting us taste the difference before we sat down to a meal with love music, including sushi and delicious fusion Japanese-med food. I love when you find out things you didn’t know during an event.

Do you have any advice for someone wanting to pursue a career in PR?

Have thick skin- and be prepared to talk lots! It’s all about relationships, but also not taking anything too serious. PR not ER as they say…

Who or what inspires you the most?

It may be cliché but I would have to say my mum. No matter what life throws at her, she just gets through it and with a smile on her face. She can be super sassy sometimes too, when need be!

Describe your happy place?

Paris with my husband Ben and wine on tap with cheese!

Since we are a PR agency specialising in food, it wouldn’t be right to not ask any food questions, so what item of food could you not live without?

This is tough, as it depends on my mood! I can name two- pasta and cheese. Although I do eat about 5 cucumbers a week!

If you could have dinner with any celebrity, who would it be, why and what meal would you cook them?

I definitely wouldn’t cook for them as I can only bake (just), so, maybe an afternoon tea, with David Attenborough.

And lastly, when making cereal do you put the milk first or the cereal?

Milk after! What kind of person does milk before? You’re just asking for spillage!

 If you enjoyed finding out more about Sophie, make sure you keep an eye out for more blog posts on the other chicks.