Experience 805 Case Study
Overview: What is Experience 805?
What does it mean to “Experience 805?” We have asked ourselves that same question numerous times. Since the program’s inception in 2014, DaviesMoore’s Experience 805 has grown into a highly competitive summer internship program. While DaviesMoore has had many interns over the years, the Experience 805 program takes interns through an immersive agency experience, giving students the opportunity to see agency life from top to bottom, suits to sandals, and beyond.
Each year we select four interns to join our team for the summer: two Suits (working upstairs with Accounts & Media teams) and two Sandals (working downstairs with Digital & Creative teams). Instead of the same old ad agency internship full of trips to the copier and coffee runs, we wanted to kick things up a notch and let our interns experience what life is really like inside the day-to-day of an ad agency—working on real projects with real clients that allow them to have a real impact.
MOOREquestions: The Beginnings of Experience 805
What should an ad agency internship look like? We set out to build a program that provides interns with a comprehensive look into the world of advertising to see what #AgencyLife is all about. While Experience 805 has evolved over the years, it has always had its roots in setting up our internship alumni for success in the agency world. Whether interns want to venture into media, design, accounts, or digital, there is a path for them to cut their advertising teeth and find their passion.
MOOREinsights: The Evolution of the ‘Experience 805’ Application
As Experience 805 evolved, so did the application process. Applications began in the most traditional sense with a formal resume and cover letter submission, which took the internship through its first three years. In the fourth and fifth years, we revamped the process by implementing cutting-edge digital integrations, including a chatbot and a video game. These aspects allowed us to not only showcase our digital skills, but also give us an opportunity to think outside the box and capture the attention of applicants wanting a non-traditional agency internship. It also gave us space to better convey the agency’s personality and culture, rather than just talking about who we are. These application experiences helped to set the tone for how the internship would benefit the students.
MOOREmagic: Strategy & Tactics
After the first few years, the internship saw the biggest changes in format when we decided to better marry the program and application process with our company culture.
In year four, we enlisted the help of Webigail (our custom-built chatbot) to help guide interns along the application process and make the experience feel truly interactive. Webigail asked applicants a series of questions that helped get us insights into their personalities and working style. Then Webigail guided them to a form where they could upload their resume, cover letter, and any other portfolio materials. In addition to Webigail, a few additional marketing components were implemented. While social media had always been an integral part of our promotion, we added a paid advertising budget to target students, as well as our ongoing Adwords campaigns to bid on internship-related keywords. Outside of paid promotion, we reached out to colleges and universities in Idaho, Oregon, Washington, California, Utah, Montana, and Wyoming. Through these efforts, we promoted to students through academic departments, posted on student job/internship boards, and contacted local media in our target areas to maximize our earned media reach.
In 2018, we expanded our application process from a chatbot to a web-based video game. The game, known as Intern Dash, was built in-house by the DaviesMoore Digital team. Intern Dash gave applicants the chance to prove their gaming grit by jumping through the Boise skyline, including a few of Downtown Boise’s iconic spots. While we don’t expect all of our interns to be gamers, the experience offered a fun, competitive aspect to the application. If the applicant completed the level successfully, they could “apply victoriously.” Those who did not complete the level could “apply humbly.”
The majority of this year’s promotion came from organic placement and earned media from promotion through media outlets. While no paid budget was used in this year’s campaign, the results spoke for themselves—slightly edging out the grand total from the previous year.
2014: 13 Applicants
2015: 20 Applicants
2016: 26 Applicants
2017: 54 Applicants
2018: 55 Applicants