As a summer intern at the marketing department of the worldwide hotel chain St. Regis, I learned how different departments can have conflicting key performance indicators. For instance, the responsibility of the marketing department is to initiate timely promotion offers to stimulate sales. However, marketing is a spending department, when there are budget cuts, it gets harder for budget approval, hence, sales usually go down. To ensure budgets come through, there must be strong correlation between the sales and marketing departments. However, I find it very difficult to account for success in marketing campaigns if we use traditional channels. I am especially interested in learning about how to measure the success of marketing campaigns? If the return on investment from marketing campaigns can be measured, then can show contribution to sales, then the company can develop know how on how to evolve its marketing initiatives.
A lot of times marketing is about creating a timely experience for the user. Things like ambiance, music, decorations, showmanship, lighting, timeliness, media, language, presentation, context all contribute to users’ experience. Marketing is a dynamic and learn as you do discipline. I am hoping to attend a university with hands on approach in teaching marketing, just like my experience in taking up visual arts in secondary school.
I spent 2 years studying visual art in secondary school. Towards the end of my visual art course, I developed a 3 minute video named ‘Break Away’, the video was about dreams, fantasy and nightmares. I used body movements, scary masks and red rose to symbolize nightmares and emotions instead of talking and acting. The video was about to have dreams fulfilled, you must break away from pressures. I learnt to use images to symbolize things to express a meaning and I believe this will be a useful skill for my future career in marketing.
Last but not least, I want to study marketing in university because marketing related jobs usually require team work. Marketing does not exist in vacuum, it has to contribute to sales and learn from sales about clients’ preferences. I honed my team working skills as I was the Secretary in the Student Union when I was in Year 10. We had to work together to create a Funfair day for students within the school.
My key take away for the Funfair experience was that there must be a clear division of labor for a team to function properly! The best is to have division of labor by each member’s core competency rather than by their post. Otherwise, time will be wasted in a lot of redundant communication, co-ordination and waiting.
The second lesson learned was that ‘when there is a will, there is a way!’ We did not have any surplus from previous year for our Funfair, so, we had to spend wisely. Instead of having pop singer, we invited other popular singers from fellow schools. The event was an all-time high as there was more interaction between on and off stage, where as a pop singer usually comes deliver a song and then leave the stage. This happened with a lot of prior communication. So, as a marketing professional, I believe there will be out of control circumstances which require responsive and accurate adjustment, this is the exciting part as a marketing professional.
University can undoubtedly prepare me for a future career in marketing. I clearly understand the importance of marketing to every company, big or small. I believe the subjects I currently study, my interest and my achievements have all contributed to my passion towards marketing studies.
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