Ashley, Illuminated’s summer digital marketing intern, has wrapped up her summer with us and is headed off to college. She has been a joy to work with, and we wanted to give her an opportunity to share about her experience working at Illuminated and diving in on marketing and development projects.

I have spent this summer working at Illuminated as their digital marketing intern. This summer has been amazing, and I can’t wait to tell you more about what I learned and accomplished.

Earlier this year I met Katelyn and DJ through another internship. I asked to do an informational interview with them to learn more about the marketing field, and by the end of it, they were asking me if I would like to join Illuminated for the summer. Once the meeting was over I started thinking about how little experience I truly had in marketing and what a wonderful experience this would be. At the time, all I knew about marketing was what I had learned during my sophomore year of high school. 

Throughout the summer I got to work on the rebranding of Illuminated and their new website (now live!). It was fascinating to see what all goes into building a website. While working in a Scrum environment I figured out how helpful sprints are when there are heaps of tasks to be accomplished. My favorite part of the process was working in Divi to build out the Illuminated website. I also enjoyed being able to implement brand colors into the website in fun new ways.

Alongside working on the website, I read Building A Story Brand by Donald Miller. It was a helpful resource when working through the rebranding of Illuminated.

When I wasn’t working on the website, I was given tools to learn more about the marketing and coding fields. I took Hubspot and Codecademy courses. In Hubspot, I became certified in Advanced Social Media Strategy and Training and Content Marketing. I also took courses that relate to marketing strategies for social media channels, web analytics, and creating a journey-driven user experience.

In Codecademy, I took beginner courses in PHP, CSS, HTML, JavaScript, and Python. Before this summer, I did not have much of an interest in coding, but after learning more about website building and software development, I started to become more curious about what it all included. Little did I know I would love what I found!

I got the chance to create a hangman application in Python as my end-of-summer project. I was given a list of guidelines and bonus items that the application had to do. I really had no idea where to start, but I found that it helped to draw out each path and making decision points different shapes so it was clear what were action items and steps to action items. I got really excited when the application started to come together. It was really fascinating to go through all of the different steps that go into making an application. I can’t wait to put that knowledge to use in my introduction to computer science class in college.

This summer I was also able to attend an American Advertising Federation (AAF) luncheon that was focused on implementing a lean content marketing strategy.

Thank you to DJ and Katelyn for allowing me this amazing opportunity. I have learned so many valuable skills from knowing how Scrum works to learning about the buyer’s journey. I have enjoyed my time here at Illuminated!

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