The Apprentice

Jessica Hoggarth • 9th Jan 2020

With the finale of BBC One’s ‘The Apprentice’ finishing up just before Christmas, I thought it would be fitting for me to write about my experience as an apprentice here at The Lane. So here goes nothing…

Where to start? Well, this time last year I was sitting in a classroom so working in an actual place of business certainly felt like I was going in at the deep end. Full disclosure, this transition has been no easy task. In fact it’s been a bit of a reality check – but all in a positive way of course!

Conveniently I’m the sort of person who enjoys a challenge. I was looking for alternatives to completing my final year of school and I was lucky enough to land myself a brilliant opportunity here at the Lane as a Digital Marketing Apprentice. When I first started, I had next to no clue what was expected of me… but it’s safe to say that since then I’ve learnt a lot.

Yes, at first it was a little overwhelming. A bit like starting a new school. Except that it was completely different from school. I’d never done anything like this before and certainly felt more than a bit of apprehension about doing a good job. The one thing about The Lane that I now know is that it’s full of lovely people who’ll ease any nerves a young apprentice might have. You won’t find any Alan Sugar-style egos here.

I was welcomed by Trine, our Office Manager, who introduced me around, gave me a tour of the building and got me settled. Then my mentors, Jaimie and Ria talked me through the finer details of their respective roles in The Lane Agency (the part of the business that handles the creative side of things) and Lane Media. There was a lot of terminology and processes to take in but I soon began to form a good grasp thanks to my expert teachers!

My time here has been spent learning so many aspects of agency life that I didn’t even know existed. I’d quickly hear phrases like ‘I’ll get you a brief’ flying around – what the heck was a brief? A few months later and already I’m the one throwing briefs around, well not throwing – but writing, and briefing!

For The Lane Agency I’ve been learning the basics of website building and how to upload content. Finding my way around the Content Management System for the first time was like walking through a strange city for the first time without Google maps. As you can imagine, it took me a while to get my bearings and gain confidence in what I was doing – but I’m proud to say that I soon knew my way around the various sidebar widgets and was fixing simple snags.

On the other side of the office – Lane Media, I have been immersed in all things digital media. To begin with, I was swamped with information, and I would ask excessive amounts of questions (thanks for putting up with them everyone!). A few months on and I’ve now learnt how to set up ad campaigns, boost tweets, write up paid social reports and created plenty of PowerPoint’s with information useful to the rest of the Lane Media team.

Spending time in a busy office has been a highlight, but I’ve also had a chance to represent the agency on client visits too. Jayne and Liam in the media team took me with them on a tour of Nairn’s factory – free oatcakes! Then Jaimie took me along to a Simon Howie photo shoot, which was so cool to see. I can’t wait to see the campaign go live.

My time so far here at The Lane has been a very positive experience. Everyone has been extremely friendly and I owe a huge thanks to those who have mentored me, I’ve gained invaluable knowledge and skills. Already, only 3 months on, I really feel like a valued member of the team, and I’m pretty sure they feel the same.

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