The Soapie Journey
For many of us at Soapbox, our journey began in the basement of the Spori Building in the COMM 100 class when representatives from the agency visited and talked about working with real clients. The details of getting paid and earning credit were also slipped into the presentation — and for some, that’s what resonated the most.
For others, the Soapbox journey began with a friend or roommate who worked there and gave them an all-new perspective into the exciting and stressful world of content creation, strategic planning and promotion. Soapbox is not limited to communication students which allows the culture of the office to expand as more people with different expertise work together.
No matter how we started, each Soapbox employee, at some moment, was standing in front of Manwaring Center Room 384A, reading the white, vinyl letters spelling, “Soapbox Agency,” and hoping for a chance to stand on the soapbox and say, “I made it.”
Each Soapie (the title of a Soapbox employee) began his or her journey at Soapbox by applying. The process to work at Soapbox is just like any other job. A student fills out an application found on our website, sends in their resume and attends an interview. When marking the application, the student chooses which position they are interested in and will be interviewed for that specific spot. Different position options offered by Soapbox include:
Students who take on the challenge of being an account executive know the importance of deadlines, how to lead a team and how to get things done. Project managers must be organized and detail-oriented. In this position, students learn to understand the importance of structure and professionalism in an agency setting. Account executives act as the liaison between the client and the project group, so strong communication skills are a definite requirement.
Mikelle Pouwer, a first-semester account executive, said: “More than anything I have learned the terminology of being in an agency, the flow and the importance of back planning and deadlines. By having this experience under my belt, I am definitely better set up for future prospects after I graduate.”
Clear, persuasive writing is a in demand on every Soapbox project. Creative copywriters are essential to the agency, but that pressure means students interested in this position must love to write and must do it well. They will oversee all the copy the agency produces—including brochures, scripts, print ads and more. Copywriters must be creative, clever and willing to proofread the same material multiple times. Not only are they good editors, but they also are excellent writers who can write anything from news releases to scripts to social media captions to blog copy.
Erin Roberts, a second-semester copywriter, said: “During my first semester of college, I learned about Soapbox in COMM 100 and made it a goal to work there one day. I love how much freedom we are given in Soapbox to expand our creative horizons and step out of our comfort zone, especially when it comes to working on projects.”
Marketers and researchers are students who value the big picture while understanding details. Members of this team know that proper research is what guides and directs successful campaigns. Without insightful, accurate research, the big picture becomes fuzzy. Marketing and researching are fundamental to reaching the right audiences and resonating with them.
Sean Herrick, a first-semester marketer, said: “I joined Soapbox because it seemed like too good an opportunity to pass up. I enjoy working at Soapbox since it has allowed me to better develop my skills and work as part of an effective team.”
The first requirement for a graphic designer is to be a creative thinker. The projects and clients that Soapbox works with provide opportunities for new strategies and unique designs that need a dedicated worker. Designers should know how to manage time and meet deadlines. However, being a designer at Soapbox isn’t just about the hard work and dedication — its about the ability to create and run with an impactful, well-targeted idea. Designers have opportunities to create visual content such as posters, motion graphics, brochures, social media visuals and conference booths for various clients and projects.
Gene Hayes, a second-semester Soapie, said: “I enjoy helping people figure out what kind of message they want to communicate and then providing them with something visual that not only looks nice, but that helps them reach their goal. Communication, creative thinking and visual design skills are valued by employers and I will likely use them in my future career.”
Video Director/Production Assistant
Students interested in working with video must be passionate. Clients and projects demand that the video team brings new ideas to life — so these students need to have an eye for detail and the motivation and skills to fully communicate their vision. The products born of this passion and vision must be high quality and impactful technically and creatively.
Josh Velasquez, a third-semester videographer, said: “I wanted to join Soapbox to gain some real-world experience. It allowed me to work with other video people who wanted to do the same thing, and I’ve loved it. It’s allowed me to use some pretty awesome equipment and work with some really talented people.”
The End of The Journey
Though the reasons for applying for Soapbox for students may vary, the result is the same. After the application and interview process, the Soapie’s journey becomes more fulfilling as they are officially hired and added to the class. From there, they take on anywhere from two to three projects at a time. These projects are what add experience and value to the student’s agency adventure and prepare for work after graduation.
Whether we started our journey as freshmen in the COMM 100 class, or a little farther down the road — a Soapie’s trek is one that leaves him or her with a larger network, a stronger portfolio and a clearer perspective on their future.