If structured properly, internships can be a win-win for both the intern and the company. Hiring the right intern and paying him or her a fair wage can be a big help to a busy PPC manager, while offering invaluable job experience for the intern.
My last post featured six PPC tasks that are ideal for an intern. Now let's look at six more PPC tasks that are ideal for an intern.
1. Analytics Tasks
Web analytics data is invaluable to a PPC manager. PPC doesn't operate in a vacuum – it influences, and is influenced by, other marketing channels. Therefore, an understanding of not only PPC results, but overall website results, is crucial.
But obtaining great web analytics data isn't always easy. Frequently it's necessary to set up custom analytics segments, profiles, or reports. Interns can be taught to navigate web analytics platforms with the goal of finding insightful nuggets that will help PPC managers optimize campaigns.
Skills learned: Internet marketing fundamentals.
2. Content Audits
Content marketing and curation is all the rage right now. Companies are struggling with creating content and repurposing it for use across marketing channels.
One of the first steps in content marketing is a content audit: determining what content your organization already has that can be used for marketing purposes. Interns are great resources for this somewhat arduous task. Not only can they make the job go faster, they'll learn a skill that will serve them well in a real-world job.
Involving your intern in managing paid campaigns in social channels like Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter will give them well-rounded PPC experience.
Skills learned: Content marketing, cross-channel marketing, social PPC basics.
3. Budget Pacing Tracking
PPC budget tracking is a necessary but often time-consuming task. More common in the agency world, but also found in in-house PPC, managing PPC spend to a budget can be tricky.
Automation tools help, but they often lack the sophistication needed to track complex budget allocations and make decisions based on the data.
An intern can quickly create daily pacing documents that the PPC manager can act on. It's a big timesaver and helps the intern become familiar with the cadence and seasonality of PPC.
Skills learned: PPC fundamentals.
4. Meeting Note-Taking and Distribution
I realize this sounds a lot like "making the coffee." Interns are probably sick and tired of taking notes in their college classes. But note-taking is a fact of life. No matter what career you choose, you'll probably end up in meetings taking notes.
In marketing, accurate note-taking is essential. In the agency world, it's critical.
Not only do meeting notes document discussion points and next steps, they often act as a means for communicating with clients. Having an intern to take notes in meetings frees up senior staff members to participate in the discussion without worrying about taking detailed notes.
Skills learned: Written communication, distillation of important information.
5. 'Reading List' Compilation
If you're as busy as I am, you likely don't have time to pore through every PPC news site on the web every day. And yet, PPC changes really fast – managers have to keep up or fall behind quickly.
Ask your intern to spend an hour or two per day reading for you. Have them bookmark the top three stories of the day and send you the links to read. Make sure they include discussion sites like Reddit and Inbound.org.
If you feel comfortable with it, have them participate in the conversation. Not only will this save you reading time, it immerses them in the industry and prepares them for job interviews.
In today's multi-screen world, "reading" also includes "watching." Interns can compile a list of relevant webinars and training videos that PPC managers should be aware of.
Interns could also be assigned to watch the videos and webinars and take notes, and then create a "recommended watching" list for senior PPC staff. This way, the intern is able to learn about PPC, and senior staff isn't stuck watching a webinar that's too basic or not worthwhile.
Skills learned: PPC fundamentals, written communication skills.
If your intern will be with you for 6 months to a year, consider asking them to get their Google AdWords and Bing Ads certifications. This will help the intern in their job search, for sure, but it will also help you by adding a certified individual to your ranks.
Skills learned: PPC fundamentals
If your company needs help with PPC, consider hiring an intern to help. Have you used PPC interns? Share your best practices in the comments!
Meet Your Favorite Search Engine Watch Contributors
Many of SEW's leading expert contributors will be at ClickZ Live, the new online and digital marketing event kicking off in New York (March 31-April 3). Hear from the likes of: Thom Craver, Josh Braaten, Lisa Barone, Simon Heseltine, Josh McCoy, Lisa Raehsler, Greg Jarboe, Dan Cristo, Joseph Kerschbaum, John Gagnon, Eric Enge and more!