This feature was written by Aspel Brown while on work experience at GoThinkBig.

We love it when you lot go from work experience to fully fledged professional superstars, so we were excited to hear more about Sophie’s story. Now a Digital Copywriter for Absolute Digital Media, Sophie started off her career journey with a work shadow day at GoThinkBig while studying for her NCTJ in multimedia journalism.

“I found that on-the-job training was slightly more beneficial than being a student, as you’re taking the knowledge and skills that you have learnt and applying them to real-life situations,” Sophie told us of her day with the GoThinkBig team. “Although the work experience was only a day, I learnt a lot of valuable skills, particularly when it came to SEO and communication, which I have continued to use.”

“I learnt how to use Google Adwords which has been invaluable to my new role in digital copy writing,” she added. “I also learnt how to communicate via social media and use hashtags on Twitter effectively in order to receive a response.”

After giving her digi skills a boost with a day at GoThinkBig, Sophie was later snapped up when she submitted her updated CV and applied for work experience at Kerrang! magazine.

As well as getting to go behind-the-scenes at Kerrang! HQ, see how a weekly rock magazine gets made and spend time with the magazine’s editors, Sophie got to listen in on an unedited interview with Linkin Park while transcribing, and wrote articles about Rise Against, a dream come true for a rock enthusiast.

“The whole week was the best experience I’ve ever had,” said Sophie. “I spent most of my time looking at the ins and outs of how the company is run and how the magazine is put together. I met some really amazing people, some of whom I still keep in touch with, and learnt interviewing tips and had a huge amount of guidance in order to craft my writing.”

“At Kerrang! I wrote for both online and for the magazine which has led to me being a more diverse writer and a more accomplished multimedia journalist.”

“GoThinkBig have many connections in the industry, and the work experience that I took part in has helped me to grow my writing skills as well as build connections within the industry,” Sophie told us. “For a diverse range of industry work placements, GoThinkBig is definitely the best.”

Now a copywriter, Sophie still goes to gigs and festivals as a member of the press and sometimes as a VIP guest. So we decided to grill her to get her top tips for anyone who wants to get into music journalism…

On work experience? Ask questions: “Don’t be afraid to ask a lot of questions. This will give you an insight into the business and how to do your role properly.”

Networking is invaluable: “Don’t ever pass someone off just because you don’t need them right now – they might be an extremely important source in the future.”

Do your research: “Research, research, research the band you’re supposed to be interviewing. It helps if you have a strong interest in the genre of music that you are writing about. If you don’t, then stringing together an interesting interview can be difficult.”

Celebrities are people too! “Treat band members like normal people, you might be in awe of who you’re talking to, but at the end of the day they are just regular people who want to talk about their upcoming projects.”

If you’d like to follow in Sophie’s footsteps and find out what it’s really like to work at Kerrang!, you’re in luck. We’ve got editorial work experience at Kerrang! HQ up for grabs right now, so what are you waiting for? Apply here.

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