At The Zebra, we take pride in the many different stripes that make our organization a “Best Place to Work.” Today’s post highlights Digital Communications Intern, Emma Lea Wall. Find out what makes her tick and her hot takes for other interns looking to get their feet wet at one of America’s fast-growing insurtech companies.
Tell us about yourself!
Hi, all! My name is Emma Lea Wall and I am from Fort Worth, TX. I currently reside in Austin because as well as being an intern, I am also a full-time student. I’m a junior at The University of Texas at Austin, majoring in Marketing and minoring in both Sales/Business Development and Educational Psychology. When I’m not on the clock or studying, I enjoy weightlifting, reading and watching The Great British Baking Show.
What are your responsibilities at The Zebra?
I began my time at The Zebra mainly monitoring the comments on our social channels and scheduling our posts in a marketing software called Sprout. Over time, I gained responsibilities and was able to begin working on projects more autonomously. Now, I not only monitor and respond to comments and schedule posts, but I also tag inbound comments and outbound posts to track public sentiment, respond to reviews on review sites, keep a database with positive social media comments that we use to encourage our team and use for ad quotes, help develop frameworks for responding to people on social channels that will outlive my time here at The Zebra, spearhead the creation of Spanish response frameworks, write social copy (captions) and continuously update a database full of “evergreen content” so that certain posts can be refreshed and reused at different times throughout the year.
Tell us about your supervisor/team.
My boss, Daniel Wiersema, set me up for success from the get-go. When I first came aboard, he asked me what a successful internship would look like for me and how he could help me get there. He has always been willing to answer my questions and even teach me how to do some of his job responsibilities so that there was complete transparency. When I asked for more responsibilities, he was not afraid to give me more and helped me rise to new challenges. He is candid and highly honors a two-way flow of feedback, both praise and constructive.
What does The Zebra’s mantra, “All Stripes Welcome,” mean to you?
As a college student, I have never felt belittled or undervalued for being younger at The Zebra. As soon as I was hired, I not only felt like I had a seat at the table, but they pulled my chair out for me and invited me to sit down. It was a new experience to have a supervisor ask for my opinion on important matters and actually want to hear it.
Do you have any advice for getting the most out of an internship at The Zebra?
My biggest piece of advice is to be upfront with your team and yourself with what you want to get out of your time here. Once those boundaries are clearly communicated, your team will help set you up for success. Also, if you ever feel like you can handle more responsibility, you should always ask. Growth is highly valued at The Zebra, and if you want to learn, everyone is more than willing to teach.
What skills are you happy to be taking away from your time at The Zebra?
I’m excited to have gained experience at not only writing clean, snappy copy but creating content within the boundaries of a specific brand voice. I have also expanded my knowledge about tracking a brand’s reputation and how it affects overall performance. And I’ve learned how to work with a freelance designer for social and brand needs. In addition to these hard skills, I also have come away knowing how I want to be treated in future positions.
What are you going to do next?
Well, after I finished my summer term, I couldn’t help but say “yes” when they offered me an extension into the fall. During the summer, I did a lot of training to understand the ins and outs of reputation management and how to optimize our work internally. I am eager to apply my learnings during this second term and gain more hands-on experience. Working at The Zebra has been such a treat and I truly look forward to the challenges ahead.