Onboarding Interns – How We Do It!

We have had interns helping out several times here at Fresh van Root. During the last 2 weeks have spent much time onboarding our newest intern Hanna.

Usually, I sit down and sketch out a mind map about the topics I want interns to learn and understand.

Why is that important?

  • Provide a frictionless onboarding experience
  • Get on a common ground / build the same understanding of online marketing
  • Interns should be able also to work on real-world projects, not lorem ipsum content.

This post is directed at our interns, and pointing to several posts written here to get started on several topics. But this list of topics, or onboarding program, also gives a great overview of the disciplines Fresh van Root is working on for its clients.

Onboarding Hanna – Meeting Notes on Day 1

Blogging & WordPress

Blogs and content creation in WordPress are a big topic at most of our clients. I want everyone at Fresh van Root to understand the process of creating a blog post – from idea to publish – including –

  • How the WordPress editor works and how to format a blog post (basics of HTML)
  • SEO basics
  • Categories and tags
  • Workflow to get a post published

In addition to the list above, I want everyone to understand how plugins extend the functionality of WordPress and what plugins most marketers use (i.e. Yoast).

Landing Pages & Content Creation

How to use a page builder like Elementor to create a landing page, how to connect it to MailChimp (or Slack i.e.). What are the basics every landing page should have?

In 2019 we got our first client using Webflow to run their website, so take a look at that tool also helps.

Check our post Elements every landing page should have and tools like Unbounce. Read the posts that explain how freshvanroot.com is run.

Social Media

Understand all major platforms and their audiences.

  • What are the trending post types on the major platforms?
  • What advertising formats exist (on LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter), how to create your first campaign?
  • How content is shared on different platforms?
  • How to use Buffer, Hootsuite, or Later to schedule posts

Read our posts:

Design & Graphic

Have a basic understanding of Photoshop (crop, resize, file formats, creating images for social media).

Know the benefits and downsides of a tool like Canva. Check out Unsplash.com and see how to quickly customize pictures from there.

Bonus: Create GIFs/animations with Adobe After Effects or a similar tool.


How to create a newsletter in MailChimp, from the first draft to send. What metrics exist to check if a newsletter is successful?

Check out newsletters our clients are sending (style and content).

Reporting & Analytics

Across all topics – what metrics do exist to check if a piece of content, a landing page, a social media post is successful? What is an open rate, a pageview, a unique user, impressions or a conversion rate?

Learn the basics of Google Analytics. Also, check out specialty tools like Hotjar.

Understanding the business of our clients

Browse all our client’s websites, get a basic understanding of their business and audience. Which services/products do our clients offer? What kind of marketing channels and social media accounts do our clients run?

Connecting the dots

How do all these topics go hand in hand? A blog post gets published, is shared on social media and mentioned in a newsletter. What is the goal of creating all that content and publishing it? Read “What is Content Marketing” and similar articles.

Many more disciplines to master

SEO, video marketing, display advertising, Google Ads, and many more. There are many more disciplines to master, but the topics mentioned above are most important at Fresh van Root (today).

Team Productivity

Understand and set up the toolset we use to get work done at Fresh van Root.

  • Google Drive: Shared files, shared docs, sheets, …
  • Slack: Team chat, working together
  • Trello: Manage content
  • Zoom/Google Meet: Online Calls

You will get invites to join Fresh van Root on those services.

Your Productivity

Start using a Todo App. Todoist is what we have the most experience with, but I don’t care which one you use.

Choose a screenshot tool of your liking, i.e. Greenshot or Monosnap. You will take and share a lot of screenshots during your time at Fresh van Root. Check our posts about screenshots.

Install browser extensions like Grammarly, Colorzilla, Hootsuite Hootlet or Buffer.

Start using a password manager if you do not do already. I am using Password Safe. Enable two-factor authentication and get all the mobile versions of the apps installed.

Keyboard shortcuts. Please excuse me interrupting you in advance. I get really nervous seeing someone constantly moving the hand between mouse and keyboard if the same could be done via a shortcut on a keyboard. Write down all those shortcuts I’m telling you and surprise me with new ones 🙂

How we will work together

That’s a lot of stuff to get your head around. So how do we work together to build that knowledge and get you onboard?

  • Daily morning meetings: Task level view – talk about what to do exactly, how to do it – and answer your questions.
  • Weekly meetings: Overall progress, focus topic for the week, how are you doing?
  • You will come with me to client meetings and we talk about the content of the meeting afterward
  • Lunch: Getting out of the office or cooking together (aka salad,..)

You will work on real-world examples most of the time instead of lorem ipsum projects: I always try to give you tasks that part of a bigger project. If that is not possible for some reason, you will work on our own marketing channels (blogs, social media, etc.). You will never “just play around with X”. That leads to a shallow understanding of the topic.

Please take notes. I think it is strange if you do not have questions. You can interrupt me with any questions if I do not want to get interrupted I will tell you.

Type of people at Fresh van Root

Marketing Nerds – that what we are looking for, hands-on mentality. We are a small team (boutique agency!!!) and need generalists that can manage projects that touch many marketing disciplines. We work with freelancers that are specialists in areas we do not need to master day to day.

General profile: Willingness to play around and get nerdy/techy is more important than a large following on Instagram.

Note to myself: I would have liked someone onboarding me this way in my first job.

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