The first step of my Project Hire Marian campaign stemmed from an idea I read about in Guerrilla Marketing for Job Hunters – the idea was to target employers via hyper-targeted ads. Facebook ads are great in that you can hone in on people with certain interests, activities, musical preferences and… workplace. So I did a little research and found this: Use Facebook Ads to Make Employers Hunt You Down, an article (well, a case study really) on One Day One Job, a great site for recent college grads. The participants all had positive feedback from their ads, but found the more general their demographic, the less responses they got.
So I created my ads – I targeted HarperCollins, Random House, Penguin, Rodale, Macmillan, etc. The ad linked to my website, which had my resume, references and work portfolio. And I got responses! At least one person from every publisher I focused on emailed me to tell me they passed my resume on to HR, wanted to meet, or even just to say they liked my idea. The encouragement was fantastic, and so far it’s led to some interviews and a freelance job.
The best part, however, was a blog post that was written about my little campaign on the HarperStudio website. Debbie Stier, Associate Publisher and Director of Digital Marketing, wrote:
“The publishing industry desperately needs people with these skills: creative, innovative, risk takers who know how to work the tools of the internet and aren’t afraid to use them.
I discovered Marian Schembari yesterday when I noticed her ad on my Facebook page saying she wanted to work at HarperCollins. How clever. I clicked through on the ad and found the most awesome, ‘2009’ resume.”
The article goes on to talk about hyper-targeted advertisements, as a friend of Debbie’s found my ad “scary” because I knew she worked at HarperCollins. The thing is, she has HarperCollins listed as her employer on her profile. Scary? Maybe. But I like Debbie’s point – isn’t it better (if you’re going to be bombarded with ads anyway) to be targeted for something specific rather than a generic advertisements you care nothing about? For example, I have photography down as an interest, and on my homepage, there’s an ad for a photography contest. So much cooler than your typical weight loss pills/deodorant/wrinkle cream images, don’t you think?
Anyway, the article was great because a lot of lovely people left encouraging comments (many of which said they weren’t hiring. Figures). Two people were cynical, not much liking my use of wording, but the ad generated much more positive than negative so I’m sure I’ll get over it.
The results? Ended up meeting with Debbie Stier, who is My New Favorite Person, and got a great freelance gig which a) sounds like a lot of fun, b) is a great experience publishing-wise, and c) they want to give me money (I know, right?). Also, an HR hiring manager wrote me to give advice on my resume, I had an internship interview with Atlas & Co., various phone calls and have another interview next week at a book PR firm.
Now, I got $50 off the ads (there are codes you can find online if you look hard enough)… it’s been about 2 weeks and I’ve spent a total of $100. Not sure when I’ll take them down, so far it’s been worth the money.
Lesson? Do it.