Facebook Client Solutions Manager Intern, Menlo Park, California
What started as a forum to post quick thoughts to your close social network, Facebook now streams constant, personalized information aggregated from hundreds of media outlets, governments, professionals and superstars as well. As a platform that hosts 1.13 billion active users a day, Facebook not only enhances your social life, it maintains it. Companies like this often attract bright and eager minds to help make it better and more in tune with current trends and interests, and as college students, we all understand the increasing importance of spending summers gaining a better understanding of the professional world. Sure enough, Facebook has a pretty expansive internship program that you’re missing out on if you’ve yet to apply.
What it’s Actually Like
Company culture sets Facebook apart–open-mindedness is preached, practiced and valued. “The work culture itself is kind of the embodiment of Facebook’s mission, which is to make the world more open and connected,” client solutions manager intern Daniel del Valle said about the work environment. “It’s really a top-down initiative, starting with the senior management… A lot of information is shared with the company and in the workplace itself. There’s no corner offices, no cubicles, everyone is out on the floor and collaborative.” Facebook encourages employees to use existing company platforms (i.e. Facebook Messenger) to communicate with each other throughout the office to get things done, and you’ll often find workers “dogfooding,” or testing unreleased features on other Facebook properties like Instagram and WhatsApp to accomplish tasks. Talk about self-sufficiency!
Cool Stuff You Get to Do
A fundamental responsibility of client solutions at Facebook involves creating marketing material for companies that resonates. “Through our advanced targeting capabilities, we are able to deliver ads that are directly relevant to Facebook users,” del Valle said. “Part of my job is to help the media agencies and the clients select targeting and creatives that will be relevant to their target audiences.” This requires not just an understanding what the company is trying to do, but more importantly linking it to what the average person is going to click on, both from an aesthetic and content perspective. Del Valle provided a scenario where Facebook would collaborate with a company. “The Miami Dolphins [for example] could target a look-alike audience of their season ticket holders to try to generate sales for stadium tours or season ticket sales in a cost efficient manner.” In other words, you may spend your week interacting with everything from Nestle to Columbia Records. In this business, versatility is a #majorkey to success.
What You’ll Learn
While you develop social media, marketing and communication skills as a client solutions manager intern, you can also gain the valuable quality of leadership–in fact, the job demands it. “It’s not a hierarchical company,” del Valle said. “People have to take initiative on their own.” In an office of high achievers, gaining an understanding of how to take control seems like a given.
How to prepare for your application
It’s easy to assume that a stellar GPA and superhuman IQ will set you apart from the rest when applying to an internship in Silicon Valley. In reality, you want to present yourself as well versed in as many areas as possible. “Get involved outside of the classroom–join a club, volunteer, become a TA,” said Hyla Wallis, head of the Facebook internship program. “The classes you take are just a piece of your story, and it’s important that you differentiate yourself,” she said. It’s also crucial to study up on Facebook before you start. “We’re a mission-driven company,” she said. “Learn about our values and check out what technology we’re working on before you interview.” If you want to be an employee, you’ve got to think like one.
Skills That Impress Them
While the client solutions department certainly focuses on sales for their clients, a business background is far from the most important asset one could have. In fact, experience in communications and marketing could be a bigger plus. “When you’re making these recommendations [to sales clients] you have to be able to think critically and creatively about what media you’re actually recommending to them,” del Valle said. “I would say that probably just as important, if not more important, than having a business background is actually your ability to envision social media…[knowing] what makes a good social media post versus a good TV ad is really crucial aspect of this job.” While many view Facebook as business and tech forward, social media literacy lies at the core.
As one would expect at one of the world’s leading social media companies, unique and interesting activities are everywhere. Interns can attend weekly Q&As with CEO Mark Zuckerberg and often get to interact with other executives on a daily basis. Other benefits include those that just make your life easier, such as assigned intern apartment buildings, Wi-Fi-enabled work shuttles and awesome “on-campus” cuisine.
While Facebook wouldn’t release the exact details of the application process, they noted that over 1,000 interns work throughout the year, and that intern hiring occurs on a rolling basis. Most interns stay during the summer, but Facebook still offers some internships throughout the year–maybe a great part-time gig for students that spend their academic year in NorCal. For information including how to apply, visit their program page here. You’ll also find job listings for university graduates and FBU, a program for students from underrepresented communities. What are you waiting for?