When I set out to search for internship opportunities this past summer, I was unsure of what I wanted to pursue. I knew I wanted to find an internship in a field where I could utilize my creative skills and the skills I have attained while studying communication. I have always been passionate about writing, so pursuing an internship in publishing seemed fitting. With this, I discovered BrownTrout Publishers Inc.

BrownTrout Publishers is unlike a typical publishing company as they specialize in calendar publishing. I found this to be very unique, and was interested in learning about the company, and how the world of calendar publishing operated. I also thought that combining the world of publishing with the creativity of designing calendars would be a fun, yet rewarding internship experience to participate in.

When the chance to intern with BrownTrout Publishers presented itself, I immediately jumped on the opportunity. From the months of September through December, I served as a marketing and social media intern at BrownTrout Publishers Inc., located in El Segundo, CA. As the leading calendar publisher, BrownTrout serves and designs calendars for a variety of clientele, stretching from individual calendar buyers, to large-scale businesses. They also have a licensing deal with Franklin Covey, in which they design personal planners and individual pocket calendars – one of their many successes and among their most popular designs.

Throughout my time serving as a marketing and social media intern, I participated in a variety of tasks. A critical component of my many job requirements were to fully run and operate BrownTrout Publisher’s social media platforms. I created and published content on their Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest accounts, as well as directly communicated with customers through Facebook and Twitter messenger. BrownTrout Publishers received several Facebook messages weekly, mostly from customers, asking questions about upcoming calendar designs, and the possibility of producing custom-designed calendars. I also spoke to customers and a variety of companies who purchase our calendars over the phone. I made calls to inform customers about upcoming calendar publications and accepted calls from individuals looking to purchase large amounts of calendars.

In the office, I specifically assisted in organizing and reviewing calendars and designs. I worked alongside the creative department for a few weeks, and was able to learn about the overall design process. This was my favorite part of the internship – being able to watch the calendar designs come to life. I always really appreciated the design team’s willingness to listen to ideas that I had. I gave input on specific photos that were to be published in the calendars. I also gave input about what designs I believed would succeed the most among specific demographics, like age groups and gender.

Additionally, I believe this experience boosted my self-confidence. I remember my first day in the office – I was extremely nervous and felt that I did not have the skillset needed to perform the job, given my lack of experience. By the end of the first day, I remember feeling proud of myself for jumping into a new experience, while having a positive mindset. When I arrived on my second day, I felt more confident and from there on out, every day I gained more and more confidence. When I walked out on my last official day of work, I knew I had grown a lot as a person through the experience. The internship experience allowed me to overcome fears and challenged me in ways that I had not been exposed to.

I truly believe this internship allowed me to utilize the skills I have acquired through studying communication. I found myself relying on the skills I have developed through taking courses such as Group Communication, because I discovered the importance of being able to effectively communicate within groups. I watched the design team come together and work through issues or disagreements while discussing calendar designs. I fully emerged myself in learning how the company operates. I also believe I have a better understanding of the importance of positive and effective company culture. I am thankful for this experience and truly appreciate the opportunity BrownTrout gave me. I am lucky to have had this experience, as I believe the skillset I acquired while interning at BrownTrout will be beneficial to me in the future and in my career. As a result, I am actually interested in pursuing a career in publishing.

Thank you for the opportunity, BrownTrout Publishers!

– Clare Spotts