While you watch your favorite hour-long television show, there are about 16 minutes of commercials. There’s an underlying industry behind those favorite 30-second ads. No, it is not advertising, but the industry of sales. Journalism student Kelsey Clements had her first sales internship with FOX 2 in Southfield, Michigan.
Experience in the Television Industry
Clements previously moved across the country as an intern for WHALs 11 in Louisville, Kentucky. Working in the newsroom, she discovered her interest in journalism was coming to an end as her passion lied in another department.
During the internship, Clements asked her manager to shadow different departments to discover what she was truly interested in. Clements immediately fell in love with the sales department. Experiencing the sales industry the previous summer led Clements to apply to the sales leadership minor at MSU.
“Sales is a lot about existing relationships, and that is what I love about it,” said Clements. “Building and maintaining relationships with clients makes work fun.”
Working in the Field
Clements created sales presentations for account executives during sales calls. The presentations including selling points and information needed for clients to purchase FOX ad space. She had an amazing opportunity to assist on a sale with a prospective client.
“The highlight of my internship was assisting an account executive on a successful sale,” Clements said. “I presented my presentation and interaction with the client. A few months later, I was informed the presentation was successful and FOX got the sale. It was rewarding to be apart of a sale I had been working so hard on.”
Making a Lasting Impression
Clements received her internship at FOX through previous connections with WHALs. Though Clements did not enjoy her experience in the journalism industry, she made a lasting impression on those around her, including the sales department.
“There are lots of people out there who want to help you,” Clements said. “It’s important to always make the best impression possible and work as hard as you can. Hard work does not go unnoticed.”
The sales leadership minor prepares MSU students for networking and interviewing opportunities with companies around the country. In the last year, Clements has attended numerous career fairs and galleries in the sales program. She also received school credit for her minor with the sales internship with FOX 2.
Netflix vs. Television
Clements experiences first-hand the challenges television broadcasting is facing due to streaming websites like Netflix. As a sales intern, her main objective was creating the rating and selling guides, which provided all the information for clients to purchase ad space for the FOX station.
“It was a challenge to find new ways to sell the station since the industry is changing so much,” Clements said. “If the ratings are not high, clients are not going to spend their money on television ad space, when they can go to Netflix. It was interesting to see where the industry is going and how streaming websites are affecting so many different television companies.”
Clements found her happy medium between sales and journalism with FOX 2. She will be graduating May ’18, furthering her career in digital sales.
By Brooke Segal