Millions of new college grads are now vaulting into adulthood and trying to stick the landing on a mat slippery with uncertainty.
Here's the data: Three in four college students who had secured internships or post-graduation work have had those plans skid sideways thanks to the Coronavirus pandemic, according to a College Reaction poll
So today I'm sharing a special edition of TA, with two things on deck for newly-minted marketers (or anyone looking for their next gig).
First up: How to find work.
Second: How to work.
I. How to Find Work
The ideas here are curated from my friend Peep Laja and used with his permission. I edited/added to them. Peep's full post is here
; I encourage you to read the whole thing.
- First rule of marketing: Realize that a marketer markets. Show people what you can do; don't just tell them.
- Glow up your LinkedIn profile. Your profile should sell—not document your activity like a court stenographer.
- Actually use LinkedIn: Start posting daily. Share your ideas. It'll feel awkward at first. Like no one is listening. So? Keep going.
- Build a landing page about yourself, centered on your expertise. "If you wanna get a job in DTC, design it like an ecommerce product page. If it's SaaS, make it a SaaS features page." —Peep
👉 My friend Stephan Hovnanian got a job that way. See his.
👉 Not sure how to create a landing page? Unbounce is a good place to start.
- Tell a Results story. Talk up obstacles. Say what you effed up. Show how you eventually triumphed, and ultimately how the business won. (How the business won is worth repeating. Make sure you include that.)
- Get testimonials from past managers and peers. A video testimonial is all the better: Video gives testimonials a heartbeat.
- Final rule of Marketing: Relationships and trust are everything in marketing (and in life). Ask for introductions to get interviews. Demonstrate you can use your network to open doors. "This is proof you can build relationships, and people trust you." —Peep
II. How to Work
My first job out of college was at a business newspaper in Boston called Banker & Tradesman. I was a baby reporter covering banking and real estate.
I was an English major writing about the Federal Reserve and mortgage rates. I knew jack about either. To this day I remember the moment I finally understood what "the economy" referred to: That's how much of a dumb-dumb I was. (Embarrassing.)
One day the editor walked up to my desk and said, gruffly: "I like you. You put a stamp on the envelope and you mail it."
He spoke in a voice rough-paved with the 40 cigarettes he smoked each day. And in the five years that I worked there, that's the only thing I recall his ever saying directly to me.
I had no idea what that meant. Stamps? Envelopes? Wut. My job as a reporter did not involve mailing anything. What does "you put a stamp on the envelope" actually mean?
You'd think that that as an English major I would've recognized the compliment for what it was: a metaphor.
The editor meant that I took ownership of a job and did what it took to complete it. I wrote the letter. I put a stamp on it. I mailed it off. Metaphorically.
That line ("Always put the stamp on the envelope") became the first item on my How to Work list—now, decades later, rewritten many times and currently tacked onto the wall in my Tiny House-Office.