Supermarket Creative is an independent creative studio set up by Sean Drake & Michelle Leshem in 2005. They describe themselves as an: “Experiential Event & Independent Creative Agency in Miami for consumer-facing brand activations, experiential events, out-of-home & culture marketing and advertising, event production, branding, design, social media, content creation (video, fashion & still-life/product), and influencer marketing. SMC has over 50 brands in their portfolio, both national as international, their past clientele includes brands like Heineken, Dolce & Gabbana, Converse, The Betsy Hotel, Absolut Vodka, Mercedes Benz USA, Lacoste, Prada. Some of the projects they worked on ranged from photoshoots to pop up stores, and from award shows to beach cleanups. The company also has a sister agency in LA and has a lot of connection in NYC, this makes it for them possible to not only focus on the regional market; Miami, but also go national.
In the 5 and a half months I was active within SMC, I was able to meet a lot of brand owners/representatives of a great range of brands. But there was one brand i was doing work for on a daily bases, this company is CitiBike Miami. And because a lot of my work was done for CB I will give some information about the company to see where we came from. Citi Bike Miami was originally founded as DecoBike plc, in 2013*** Citi Bank sponsored a bike share service in collaboration with Deco Bike. Now in 2018 Citi Bike Miami counts over 500 bike stations throughout the city of Miami and they have an official contract as bike sharing service on Miami Beach. SMC was asked to be the marketing company behind Citi Bike, our tasks include, but are not limited to: managing their social media accounts, managing their social media customer service, creating and implementing new brand activations.
In my daily routine I spent most of the day doing work for Citi Bike Miami, my work mainly included: harvesting of images on Instagram to post on our account, commenting and gaining engagement on Instagram, designing new posts for brand activations, creating new ideas and brand activations.
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My personal goals
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ARRIVAL IN MIAMI
6 February 2018
STARTED WITH THE INTERNSHIP
12 February 2018
FIRST EVENT: APPLE MUSIC UPCOMING: BAD BUNNY
8 March 2018
SECOND EVENT: BEACH CLEAN UP VIRGIN VOYAGES X DEBRIS FREE OCEANS
16 March 2018
FIRST ACTIVATION: CITI BIKE – MMW SPIN TO WIN
20 March 2018
SECOND ACTIVATION: CITI BIKE – MIAMI OPEN
22 March 2018
THIRD ACTIVATION: CITI BIKE – ULTRA MUSIC FESTIVAL
24 March 2018
FOURTH ACTIVATION: CITI BIKE – MIAMI GAY PRIDE
6 April 2018
THIRD EVENT: SNOWBIRDS & FLAMINGOS
7 April 2018
FOURTH EVENT: CITI BIKE – EARTH DAY
22 April 2018
FIRST TRIP: KEY WEST
23 April 2018
SECOND TRIP: NEW YORK CITY
26 April 2018
FIFTH ACTIVATION: MIAMI BEACH CICLOVIA
6 May 2018
SIXTH ACTIVATION: MOTHER’S DAY
13 May 2018
SEVENTH ACTIVATION: BIKE TO WORK DAY
18 May 2018
FIFTH EVENT: AHEAD AWARDS
12 June 2018
SIXTH EVENT: SPOTIFY PRESENTS KAROL G
14 June 2018
THIRD TRIP: LA
20 June 2018
LAYOVER: SAN FRANSISCO
29 June 2018
FOURTH TRIP: LAS VEGAS
30 June 2018
DEPARTURE FROM MIAMI
3 July 2018
April 14th, 2018
In the first Skype conversation between myself, Sean and Marieke was mostly to introduce the company and explain the projects I had worked on so far. We talked about the action plan I had presented and gave information and further explanation about the things I had put down. I got back as feedback that it was a good plan but a few things were missing, one of them was the lack of personal goals. I told about the upcoming projects and gave a rundown of how my day at Supermarket Creative went. After that, I talked about how I’m going to complete the competencies and how in what form I’m going to deliver my final product. I talked about the tasks I’m doing that are relevant to each competency, like the AR Wynwood tour for the leadership & management competence, the social media post for Citi Bike for the marketing communication and the communication plan for Citi Bike Miami for the competence communication.
May 17th, 2018
We started by explaining the things that were going on internally in the company, this was regarding the situation of one employee. This led to me taking over 1 account, Citi Bike. I explained in the call that, with the supervision and control of Sean, how I have to handle the account. This involved me being responsible for the social media posts, activation, promo ideas and customer service(partly). This also gives me more vulnerability because I can’t hide behind another employee and blame him, everything that’s going wrong and I’m working on it is my fault.
After that we talked about the projects I worked on after we talked in April, the first event I talked about was the Earth Day event. Next, I went in on the mothers day promo we had run for Citi Bike in the past month. I also talked about the upcoming promo we are doing on the bike to work day. I also mentioned the upcoming Spotify event and the AHEAD Awards that we are producing.
We also discussed my ending date of the internship and the progress on my final product. In the last part of the conversation, we mainly talked about my progress in the school and the assignments and tests I still have open. After that Sean also talked about how he is giving me daily feedback and the points I still need to work on like focusing better. We finished it by talking about the goals I still want to achieve before the end of my internship.
April 14th, 2018
I began by summarizing the whole internship course by going over every project I had worked on in the past. I started with Citi Bike because this was one of my main clients, I gave a rundown of the earth day event, Ultra music festival activation. I talked about my tasks on the events and began talking about one of my personal goals photography and I told what the new things were I learned about it during the internship and why it really inspired me. Next, I talked about the other events and discussed the online promo we did and my tasks on these promos.
The Ahead Awards was one of the other big events I talked about because it was a new experience for me because it was on a whole other level than all the other things I’ve done.
So after I went over the projects I worked on I talked about the competencies that I had chosen and how they were implemented in my internship. On every competence, Sean gave his feedback on that subject.
When we came to the last competence “leadership & management”, Sean first gave his feedback and opinion about the AR Wynwood tour. He told how he saw why it failed and pointed out the parts I dropped the ball.
So then I gave my own reflection I talked about the things I learned and the problems I encountered. My main conclusion that I’ve put all my effort in the internship but for my own feeling I could have done better. This was mainly due to the fact that I was at home for so long and I wasn’t really comfortable so that affected my work ethic.
After my own reflection, Sean went over his feedback and opinion of my work during the internship. The main problem that came up again was my lack of focus and the lack of keeping my focus. Michelle pocked in and also gave her opinion. She told I’m very intelligent as a 19-year-old kid but also mentioned that focus is a big problem. She also complimented my skills in design, even though I don’t have a history in graphic design and told that I had to dig deeper into the subject. But it all came back to the problems I have with focus and that that is also the reason she wouldn’t let me handle a project all by myself without supervision. She mentioned my strenghts, which are: coming up with great strategies, following through and great creative ideas.
My own performance
I never worked at a “9 till 5” job before, I didn’t know what to expect. With a handful of expectation, I was every day more or less on time, but I was there every day I never called out because I was sick or whatsoever. When I was seven, ADHD has been constated, so concentration is one of my struggle points, this together with the fact I don’t manage my stuff very well had me scratching my head if this was the right internship. And it really changed from day to day, some days I really couldn’t get things done and I took 5 smoke breaks a day, but other days I found the focus and got a lot of work done in minimal time. At some points, I didn’t give 100% and I was lazy, the reason for this is maybe because I had to do the same work for a couple of days. I regret those moments because I have the feeling that I could really have made a bigger impact with my work. I also had to deal with the fact that ideas sometimes get rejected and I afterward had to gather myself together and showed I could do better. I personally think I did get up fast after something was rejected because I did want to prove myself. At some point, I dropped the ball and forgot stuff but I did everything to get it right as soon as possible. I think my time management was lacking many of times, I sometimes didn’t get things done just because I postpone them. I also had a hard time starting on things I was hard to come up with the where to start. I think overall it all comes back to having lack focus, I now that if I do have the focus I can work hard and efficient but I also know that it’s hard for me to get that focus and keep it. It’s something that also really influenced my time at Supermarket Creative and also let to me being not able to really give everything I had. Overall I learned a lot and I think I was able to coop with the stress and pressure, I could keep up with the rest of the team and I think I complimented the team well.
When I was looking for an internship company, I wanted it to be a small company somewhere I could be someone instead of just an intern for the dirty work. When I first contacted Sean I got a reply back in less than 2 hours, from that moment on I already knew that this would be the perfect company. I was supposed to do my internship in the first semester, that didn’t work out due to the visa but I still went for 2 weeks to Miami. I then already met Sean so when I came on my first day at work on February 12th, it was nice to know who I could expect.
They set me up perfectly, and after some info about how the things go around in the office and about the clients I’ll be working with, i basically just begun. They gave me directions and some tasks, but other than that I was free to do what i wanted as long as i got the work done. This was basically the tone of the rest of the internship, I was really part of the team not just an outsider that could to some extra work. They, Sean and Michelle, gave me pretty big responsibility such as posting on social media, even when my first languages isn’t english, and having 1 on 1 contact with clients to arrange certain things.
Sean and Michelle gave me really good support, they didn’t precisely tell how things had to be done, the rather let me figure it out and give feedback when the product is finished.
Working in the US
The main reason why I wanted an internship abroad is to discover the culture and the work ethics of the country. I was always amazed by the US and this was the perfect opportunity to explore and experience how it is to be living and working in the US.
The most things that struck my mind where when we had to work with vendors or other supporting companies during various events. I still don’t know if this is really a Miami thing or that this is common in the US, but time management during event setups and the actual event is not that great. I’ve done events in London and in the Netherlands and it’s super important to really be strict on time and that everything is set up on time, this is not the case in the US(Miami). On example was during the Apple Music: Bad Bunny event, the event wasn’t dressed up completely and they were still sound-checking minutes from the doors being opened, people were already in line to get in. One of the other things is that it’s much harder to work and set rules with vendors in the US as opposed to Europe, this was the case during the Spotify Karol G event where the location still had to sign critical contracts minutes before set up was supposed to happen.
But except for the time management problems, working in the US is way different than working in the small Netherlands,
Citi Bike Miami
It was new for me to work at a place that gets its tasks from clients, and that’s why I found it very interesting to be working that much for CitiBike because I got the opportunity to really discover and learn about the brand and give my own twist to it. I also spoke a couple times with the CEO of the company to really dig into the vision and mission. I also worked with the employees of the company to distribute bikes like during the Miami beach gay pride activation.
But as good as the concept is its far from perfection, you have read this already in the communication plan I’ve set up. The main problems were that CB didn’t have a good website or app, this really limited us to the tools we did have like social media. For a company that gathers so much big data and has members, it’s weird to see they don’t do anything with the data and for the user that there isn’t an app or website portal where you can see for example your ride history, your info, etc. The foundation of the company; the bikes, is also not without flaws. I was also responsible for the customer service on social media, and 9 of 10 complaints were about the bikes or the kiosk, they were not working or damaged.
Also my biggest problem with CB, as an economics student, was the fact that Supermarket Creative had almost never seen any numbers about the company, no member increases, no active user amount. So for me, yes it was docile to come up with new strategies and activations, but from my perspective, it’s basically throwing money into a bottomless pit because we couldn’t see any results.
Wynwood AR Tour
The Wynwood AR tour was going to be my product for the competence “leadership & management”, but it got off the radar and progress stopped. There where a couple of reasons that brought about the failure of this project. Sean and I came up with the idea to implement AR with Citi Bike, because the office is located in Wynwood, the art/mural district of Miami, and has a lot of guided tours we wanted to combine these two and set up a self-guided tour using new technology. I was in charge of the project and had to produce a viable presentation of the idea, but I first had to do research on the possibilities in the AR area. When I did this there was one company that stood out due to simplicity and cost efficiency, this was Aurasma (now HP Reveal). But like suggested in the name, it was and still is in the middle of a rebranding to the HP brand. This made it impossible to use their design studio and forced me to look for other applications to use. Based on a lot of research and searching I concluded that an application that is cost efficient and meets our requirements isn’t on the market yet. This was for me the reason to stop the development and research for this project. I couldn’t put all my time in looking for a solution because there were a lot of things on my plate and it was more complex then both Sean and I thought beforehand.
I did make a couple huge mistakes, the biggest of them was communication. Sean barely knew what was goes on with the progress of the project, I never showed him any emails with the customer service of HP Reveal. I also didn’t clearly let him knew what the status of my research to other applications was.
Places I Visited