I recently met with a great group of students from the U Vic BComm program and we got into a workshop around how to get an internship at an ad agency.
Some conclusions and suggestions:
Don’t tell the agency you’ve always thought you could do better ads than the ones you see on TV. Everyone says that.
Don’t regurgitate some factoids you picked up from their website. They wrote it and know that stuff.
Don’t bring the Managing Director a cake. (well actually DO, but don’t expect an internship from it.)
Don’t forge a relationship with the receptionist. (They are busy people, not turnkeys.)
Don’t write the Creative Director a poem to prove you took a creative writing course.
Here’s where we think the best opportunity lies:
Look at the agency’s client list. Identify an industry that is not represented. Research that industry. Look for likely matches with the agency and its culture/size/location. Do up an intelligence sheet on the best candidate. Get a contact name. Present this to the agency as a new business opportunity.
THEN follow up with the cake.
In other words, don’t tell the agency you’re the best candidate for the job. Show them.