Job Search Research

So you got down your branding and your networking; now lets talk online job search. Looking online for a job is a good way to see what people in your field are looking for from candidates. I am a believer that most jobs are not posted but, if they are you know exactly what they are looking for. I for instance would love to work for an advertising agency. These jobs are rarely posted. I did however find a few, and here is what they are looking for:

Company: Centro  Job title: Content Creator  Location: http://bit.ly/1WrHQFj

Description:CORE RESPONSIBILITIES

  • Brainstorm, create and transform ideas into stories for all types of marketing materials including: emails, landing pages, sales collateral, presentation decks, digital advertising, newsletters, video, social and event materials.
  • Collaborate closely with Product Marketing, Sales, Media Services and other internal subject matter experts to tell the brand story to our customer segments.
  • Continually innovate, identifying new and more enticing ways to tell and share the Centro story.
  • Research and write on a wide range of topics in the digital advertising industry.
  • Ensure content is consistent and on-brand (style, tone of voice) and optimized for search, social and across all channels (i.e., mobile, video, email etc.).  The ability to create SEO keyword driven copy is essential to success in content marketing and this position.
  • Steward the brand voice to ensure Centro’s personality is defined and differentiated.
  • Be the arbiter of best practices in grammar, writing, and style.
  • Work against an editorial calendar consistently meeting dates and deliverables on a daily/weekly basis.
  • Uphold standards and processes for content creation, distribution, and maintenance.

 

Company: Centro  Job Title: Media Strategist  Location: http://bit.ly/1TRgGXL
Description: 
CORE RESPONSIBILITIES

  • Responsible for the stewardship of a media plan from concept to cash
  • Develop comprehensive media plans across a variety of digital channels that meet each client’s marketing objectives
  • Assemble site consideration set and make recommendations on how to best allocate advertising budgets by utilizing media research tools, Centro’s proprietary tools, and industry/market knowledge
  • Develop and issue RFPs to publisher partners; gather and analyze proposals to determine the best media selections, negotiate rates & positioning as required
  • Create final media recommendation and provide detailed strategy and rationale that supports planning decisions
  • Work with internal teams to oversee and monitor ongoing campaign performance, ensuring campaigns are executed properly and according to client expectations
  • Assist Campaign Analysis team in strategic analysis of campaigns and provide recommendations for future media plans.
  • Foster relationships with both clients and vendors
  • Accompany Client Development team on external meetings and presentations when applicable
  • Support Supervisor & Director in responding to client requests and special projects as necessary
  • Facilitate and lead internal status meetings
  • Manage timelines and coordination of resources for deliverables owned.  Ensure deliverables are aligned and implemented across all teams to meet client’s goals and objectives
  • Assist with training and mentorship to the junior members of the team

 

 

 

Company: Full Circle Advertising       Job Title: Marketing Strategist       Location: http://bit.ly/1NogwQJ

Description:

ESSENTIAL FUNCTIONS

  • Develop marketing strategies and tactics for clients
  • Generate proposals and project estimates
  • Create and write project briefs
  • Review project briefs with Full Circle team to understand, verify and establish clear deliverables, budgets and schedules
  • Lead project turnovers and project reviews with creative/web teams
  • Attend, record and publish client meeting notes and action items
  • Provide direction to Project Managers/Creative Team with dates/hours/deliverables
  • Communicate progress, expectations and deliverables with clients
  • Ensure client receives accurate and timely delivery of projects
  • Develop new clients or grow existing accounts

 

Company: Media Star Promotions     Job Title: Promotional Marketing Tour Field Rep.  Location: http://bit.ly/1qoYg4E

Media Star Promotions is a Baltimore based marketing agency seeking dedicated SpokesModel to execute a national mobile marketing tour for a major tobacco company. This full time position is ideal for attractive, outgoing men and women who are looking for an interesting, challenging position within the nightlife and retail scene that will allow them to make good money and have fun.

Responsibilities:

  • • Consumer engagement with adult tobacco users 21 year of age or older within nightlife and retail establishments
  • • Inventory management and reconciliation of program assets including coupons
  • • Legal Compliance monitoring and adherence
  • • Client interaction

 

Company: Frederik Meijer Garden     Job Title: Communications editor/ Project Manager  Location: http://bit.ly/1qoULLx
Job Description:
Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park, one of the nation’s premier cultural destinations, is seeking a Communications Editor/Project Manager. This position serves as copywriter and editor, assists in the administration of the department, and facilitates the workflow process for print collateral, annual reports, invitations, magazines, signage and imaging services for public relations, advertising, promotions and digital media, and helps develop and maintain the Meijer Gardens brand. Strong organizational, writing and content development skills are required—graphic design background is a plus. Four-year degree (or equivalent) and five years experience required. We are an equal opportunity employer. All applicants are required to complete our background and drug-screening process.

Qualifications:
Strong organizational, writing and content development skills are required—graphic design background is a plus. Four-year degree (or equivalent) and five years experience required.
So here are the jobs I looked into that had actual job postings. I want to see if the technology and skills I have are up to snuff for what employers are looking for. I notice the jobs at Centro advertising require knowledge in SEO and digital marketing. Many of them seem to want knowledge and expertise. I assume that they are looking for a candidate with a basic understanding of Adobe and Microsoft Office suits is an understood. A few of the jobs require budgeting and scheduling of media. This is a good indicator that you might need a tool such as excel for organizational purposes. The job at Fredrik Meijer even says right out that they would prefer someone with graphic design experience. So far I conclude employers as looking for a candidate with great  basic graphic design, understanding of Microsoft programs,  knowledge of SEO and digital advertising.
I feel that my education at Grand Valley and my experience between several internships has prepared me for basics to obtain any of these positions. I would however like to get better at Adobe suit programs and would like to make sure I am well versed on the latest SEO techniques. The only other thing I need is more time and experience in the field to get to higher positions. The best way to do this is to continue to intern, work, or volunteer in my field in order to obtain more experience for my resume. So if you are like some of my classmates and feel clueless as to how to get more experience for a job, intern and volunteer your way there. Interning and volunteering is also helpful for networking your way into some of those jobs that are not posted as well. I hope this was helpful for anyone on the prowl for their dream jobs.

 

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So Me Opinion

I wanted to do an opinion piece on one of my favorite social media platforms…Facebook! Call it over rated. Call it old school if you like. It is hands down my favorite social media website. I’m not alone, as Facebook is the worlds largest social networking site sitting at 1.55 million active users (Statista, 2016). That is more than Twitter, Tumbr, and Instagram combined! Users range from old to young all over the world.

Popularity is not why I love Facebook. As a user I love how Facebook has so many affordances and how users must need permission to connect. By affordances I mean what the site allows you to do. Facebook allows you to: poke friends (yes you can still do this), like things, customize what shows up on your feed (Baer, 2015), send private messages, share status, share videos, share music, play games with others, and the list goes on.

This is one of the more versatile social media sites to date. This social site is always adapting which is why it is still so relevant since it opened up to the general public in 2006 (Hansel, 2006). Also, unlike some other social sites like 4Chan, Reddit, or Tumbr; Facebook connects people that already or are likely to know each other in real life. Facebook strengthens real life interactions like planning parties and events or asking or selling your car. It helps even helps you remember important events within your network such as birthdays (Jenn-Anne, 2014).

In my professional life I love Facebook for another reason. It has great narrow casting abilities with a continuously growing data base of users (Baer, 2015). This allows you target not only by demographic and geographic but also by interests. It is arguably only second to the Google display network in this respect. You can control your budget similar to Google by allowing you to set cap daily or campaign amounts. This advertising avenue also guarantees reach and impressions. It has a very easy to use analytics to measure ROI and a plethora of help resources.

I know what you must be thinking, “well Facebook is only good for B2C”. FALSE! This is a common misunderstanding of Facebook B2B advertising. Businesses have employees and employees after work become customers. Meaning that the decision maker of a company when not at work (and sometimes during) uses Facebook. As a marketer you just have to speak their language. So there is my rant on my favorite social media site.

 

 

Baer, J. (Mar. 2015). “11 Mind-Blowing Reasons Your Company Needs Facebook”. Convinceandconvert.com. Retrieved from web (Apr. 12, 2016). http://www.convinceandconvert.com/social-media-tools/11-reasons-your-company-needs-facebook/
Hansel, S. (Sept. 2006). “Site Previously for Students Will Be Opened to Others”. New York Times.com. Retrieved from web (Apr. 12, 2016). http://www.nytimes.com/2006/09/12/technology/12online.html?_r=0
Jenn-Anne. (Mar. 2014). Chicagonow.com. “6 reasons Facebook is the best thing that ever happened to friendship”. Retrieved from web (Apr. 12, 2016). http://www.chicagonow.com/old-single-mom/2014/03/6-reasons-facebook-is-the-best-thing-that-ever-happened-to-friendship/
Statista. “Leading social networks worldwide as of January 2016, ranked by number of active users”. Statista.com. Retrieved from web (Apr. 11, 2016). http://www.statista.com/statistics/272014/global-social-networks-ranked-by-number-of-users/

 

Working Your Networking

We have covered personal branding and defining your career path. In the journey for dream job, defining your career path is like grabbing your compass and personal branding is like your supplies pack. Networking is taking the first steps out on the journey. It can be like a jungle out there at first but, the only way to tame it to take it head on. I did this by attending my first ever Grand Rapids Young Professionals (GRYP) mixer last week Thursday.

Being that I did not know anyone there I was naturally nervous. For most people this is expected. Don’t worry, this happens to a lot of people. I decided not to allow myself to feel overwhelmed. Before I could meditate on the thought I headed straight the bar and to the first table I saw. I introduced myself to a small group of people and they where very welcoming. One of the other ladies at the table was also attending for the first time. In fact we hit it off pretty well. Even though the two of us got along well we did not work in remotely the same field. So I made a point to move on to meet other folks.

This not to say that making conversation outside of your field is bad. This person could know somebody relevant to your field within their network. For this reason it is good to get to know them and make conversion. In this particular scenario this was not the case. I made sure to go to as many tables as possible. I found that not everyone was as interested in chatting with me as I was with them. That is okay. There are plenty of reasons for this. They are likely there because a friend made them come or they are shy or uncomfortable. At any rate it is important to not take offense.

Remember all that personal branding we talked about in previous blog posts? All that comes in handy now. While I was chatting with all these people I handed out my business card. This leads fellow interested net-workers straight to my webfolio or my contact information. I brought a small stack of cards and still wish I had more for this event. My lesson for next time…bring too many cards.

At the end of the day I met a lot of people and a few memorable connections. I received a few follow up e-mails to people I shared my business card with. This is not a bad idea as many people can lose business cards. Additionally, sending a follow e-mail can help you stand out and allows people to automatically add your e-mail to their contacts list. This is a technique I will steal for future networking events, as should you too. So get out there and make sure you are prepared instead of scared! If you want information about attending a GRYP event check their web site here.  Happy networking.

(Too busy networking before official signage was taken down. Image was taken with fellow networker still wearing official branded name tag).

 

Feature Image Source: Verhage C. (2016). Networking.

 

Refining Your Career Path

I’m not sure what generation you are from but mine (millennial) has been told that you graduate high school, you graduate college, and then get a good job.  If you are like most of us, you had no idea what you wanted to do. Not to mention almost 40% of people who attend college do not end up graduating and only 15% of four year students graduate on time according to Usnews.com .

These are some daunting statistics. I am fortunately soon to be part of the lucky 25% of the population with a four year degree in the United States. And unlike the fables of pre-graduation,  there is no job just sitting around waiting for me at the end of the scholarly tunnel. So, I decided to visit a career adviser. Career advisers talk with you about your skills sets and your plans (or lack there of) for your future. They help you get guide you on how to get a leg in your desired positions in your desired field. If you have gone to a credited university, I would advise you to visit an adviser.

During my advising session when talked about my immediate future. At the current moment I am working for a promotions company in the greater Grand Rapids area in Michigan. I am also sacrificing going straight into my dream job or working for an advertising agency to help my partner run a business. We talked about my strategy in keeping connected to individuals in my field for when I decide to enter into. My adviser helped me create an excellent seeming fail proof strategy of networking and honing my skill sets. Additionally, she pointed me in the right direction to people who could critic my portfolio for when I am ready to put myself out there in my field. Anchors up!

 

 

Allie Bidwell. Most College Students Don’t Graduate On Time. (Dec. 1, 2014). USNEWS.com. Retrieved from web. http://www.usnews.com/news/blogs/data-mine/2014/12/01/report-too-much-freedom-hurts-college-graduation-rates

Personal Branding cont. :business cards.

So when you think you are done with personal branding and you realize you just only got started. Welcome to personal branding part three. You can spend all day working on personal branding for people to find you on the web. You can even spend hours tweaking your online portfolio or managing your SEO. Unfortunately the web can only do so much. To take your personal branding to the next level you will want to do some good ol’ fashion face to face networking.

Get out there are and meet people in your field. Most jobs aren’t even posted. It really is all about who you know. So get out there and get to know them! You might have the gift of gab but, the best tool for people to remember and contact you is your business card. Make your card stand out. Make sure your design is appropriate for your field. Don’t make your card all glitter and bubble is you plan to work in finance. As fun as that might be your colleges and clients might not take you seriously.

Make sure you have an aspect that is consistent with your branding sites. For my card I used the same picture as my branding sites. I also decided to create a tag line “Let Me Share Your Message With The World”. It was just a little something I decided on as my personal tagline. I will likely go back and update it to my websites just to keep my personal branding consistent.

Not only should it be consistent but, make sure your card stands out. Again this is dependent on your field. I went for a semi-conservative design and font style for my business card. To make it pop I used a bright red color and a big bold Hello. This alone should make my card stand out from the stack. I use to work for print block artist that printed one of her favorite works of art on the backs of her cards. Not only did it make her card stand out but, it allowed her to show a sample of her work.

If you ever need good design ideas check out Vista Prints pre-made cards, Canva.com for templates, or simply just google card designs. Check out your colleges business cards if you are unsure what is standard for you industry. So todays lesson: Network, keep branding consistent, and stand out. Happy Branding!

Verhage, C. (2016). Business card. Grand Valley State University, Allendale, MI.

Personal Branding Cont.

Here is the second part of my personal branding sepal. You can never do too much personal branding is what I always say! In addition to creating a personal nameplate (check my last blog post),  I also wanted to take control of my online presents. You might have already heard of how common it has become for potential employers to Google search job candidates.

The first thing you will want to o while on the job prowl is Google yourself. Knowing is half the battle. Sorry folks, but trying to hide your crazy college party pictures isn’t going to happen by simply putting your page settings to private. It will take a little more effort to make sure you ace your online report card. Speaking of online report cards, you can get yours at Brandyourself.com.

Brandyourself.com is another free tool to help you manage personal branding. It also improves your SEO. The free service runs a search of your name and allows you to determine if your name brings relevant, positive, or unwanted search results. The website then gives you a score. Mine was as you can see a lame C-. There were a lot of irrelevant results for my search.

The free service gives you tips on how to improve and boost your wanted search results. On this round I completed three tasks to help improve my search ability. First Brandyourself asked me to update my Linkedin headline to add my name. I did this and also added my name more in my profile summary. This is because Google will boost results of sites that have your keywords in it in the first paragraph.

Next I completed my Brandyourself profile so that I could share it to my social channels. I tired to keep it consistent with my other professional social channels. Consistency is  another key aspect of branding. I thirdly shared my Brandyourself page to my social channels. I shared it to my Twitter and Linkedin pages. Connecting your pages also helps improve your SEO and allows future employers easy access to your professional sites.

The Brandyourself site gives you great advice on how to improve any of your chosen pages in search results. It also allows you boost your chosen pages after a certain amount of time. This will drive down unwanted page results and competitors. There is a paid service option if you would like to drive up chosen page results more quickly. Check out your search result report card today! Happy branding.

It’s All About.Me : Personal Branding

In today’s world it’s all about personal branding. If your not going to talk about yourself then who will? In the ever more competitive dog eat dog world of job search, it’s important to stand out. A simple resume just won’t cut it anymore. That is why I created a personalized nameplate at About.Me. It is a very simple and easy to use site. You can connect your blog, portfolio, etc. as a call to action on your nameplate site. I chose to link my webfolio as my call to action giving visitors direct access to view my previous projects online.

The site has other great personal branding features. The site allows you to display your personal interests, a bio, and optional links to your social media channels. For my nameplate I put my more professional social channels such as this WordPress, my Twitter, and my Linkedin pages. Personal branding does not stop at here but, it is a great start. To check out my personal nameplate page click here.