Recently I was lucky enough to be given the opportunity to attend an editorial experience afternoon at Bauer Media in their Peterborough base through the GoThinkBig website (http://www.gothinkbig.co.uk/) for those of you who don’t know about GoThinkBig it’s a “site that helps young people get a foot on the career ladder” and provides lots of different opportunities in many different fields for young people aged between 16-25 so if you’re looking to have an experience in something you dream of doing then I’d definitely take a look!
Also for those who don’t know what Bauer Media is then it is a multi-platform UK-based media group consisting of many companies based on the two major media fields of Magazine and Radio. Bauer Media is part of the Bauer Media Group, Europe’s largest privately owned publishing Group. The Group is a worldwide media empire offering over 300 magazines in 15 countries, as well as online, TV and radio stations. I hope now that this gives you an idea of how big this opportunity was as I’ve dreamed of working in magazines since I was about 12 and to be offered an insight of what goes on in an average day for an editor was like a dream come true.
Coming from a place not so far away from Peterborough (A half an hour drive) I was surprised when I arrived to find out the other people on the experience afternoon had travelled from all over the country from Nottingham to Leeds, one even came all the way from Wales, it showed me just how much people want jobs in the magazine industry if people are willing to travel all that way.
The talk and tour was lead by Editor of Trail Running magazine,Claire Maxted, she started off by telling us how she got to where she was today, from what I gathered from her experience I realised just how important work experience can be as if you stand out on work experience and are remembered, the chances are they will stay in contact and will tell you of jobs coming up, if you were good at what you did there is also a chance that you will end up getting the job as they already know what you’re capable of. This lead onto a talk on how to write the perfect work experience letter, a cover letter for applying for a job in the industry and also a few tips for making us stand out to an editor, very handy for someone who has yet to dip their feet into the big pool that is the media industry.
We also got to go on a tour of the Media House which let me see exactly what goes on when you’ve got a magazine to put together, it made me realise just how many titles Bauer produce, there was over 50 and that’s just in the Peterborough branch! Peterborough plays host to more of the specialist magazines, from magazines about cars and motorbikes, fishing and pets, trail walking and running, golf and football. There were plenty of things going on so working for a magazine will always keep you busy and I found out that companies will give you free products to try out in a hope of getting some form of advertising in your magazine which is pretty cool, like all the people who work for motorbike magazines get brand new bikes every 6 months to try out so they’ll put them in the magazine and when 6 months is up they get given another bike, it’s crazy! All the other magazines had loads of freebies in their sections of the building, the golf magazines even have their own indoor putting green just to test out different clubs and balls. Judging by the offices and the people in them working for magazines is a lot of fun.
We had talks from other editors from lots of different magazines and who all took very different paths to get to where they are, some of them had degrees and some of them didn’t, some didn’t have any experience in journalism at all, they just had a passion for a certain subject and just started writing about it but they all said the same thing it’s the best job they could possibly have, they all mentioned they get to travel, they get to meet famous people and sometimes their idols, they get to have fun at work and for me that sounds like the best part of the job, one of the major things that draws me into working for magazines is that no two days are the same which must be fun because it can’t even get to the boring stage if you’re doing something different all the time.
From this experience it’s made me more determined to go out and grab the job of my dreams, working my way up to one day become an editor and it’s given me an advantage over others that are trying to get into the industry and haven’t attended an afternoon like this one as I now know what editors are looking for from an application.
I know I need to GOTHINKBIG.