We’ve all seen them: the online efforts of eager job hunters, clawing at their social media dream jobs like 12-year-olds at a Justin Bieber concert. They’re interesting. They’re flashy. They’re “outside the box.”
But do they actually work?
Most of these social media stunts gain attention for a hot minute, either in the job seeker’s local newspaper, or, if they’re lucky, on a career blog like this one, before fading into obscurity.
So is it worth developing a job-hunting campaign as part of your next search? Let’s take a look at your predecessors:
Hire Me Krispy Kreme
Braden Young, a fervent fan of the sugar-laced doughnut chain, saw an opening on their team for a sales and marketing manager in Philadelphia, and went all-out with an attention-grabbing cover letter, plus Facebook and Twitter pages. His campaign is detailed in this post by Corn on the Job.
What worked: Young was already passionate about the company he was applying to work for, which came through in his content. But most importantly, he had the skills to back up the ostentatious way he handled the job search. He articulated his qualifications in a succinct and memorable way.
What didn’t: Not much to complain about with this job seeker. He heard from Krispy Kreme four hours after launching his campaign, and guess what? He got the job.
Hire Me Chipotle
Bianca Cadloni created a website devoted to her efforts to snag a social media and PR gig for the Mexican grill, with the words “WILL WORK FOR GUACAMOLE” greeting all visitors to the site. Different sections such as “Social Media” and “Public Relations” detailed her qualifications, in addition to a digital version of her resume.
What worked: She used a Twitter handle, @HireMeChipotle, as well as a hashtag by the same name to get the word out and corral all discussions related to her search. Also, she made herself personable in her content, talking about her first experience with the restaurant chain, and inserting her voice in all communications.
What didn’t: Unfortunately, this job seeker didn’t even get to the interview phase. Even with a solid website and social media efforts, I have a feeling the decision came down to experience. With two short internships under her belt and some editorial work for a niche online magazine, it’s tough to stand taller than other candidates with even two or three years of public relations experience.
Chipotle’s communications director emailed Cadloni to let her know she’d been noticed, but in a candidate pool of roughly 500 people, there was no guarantee they’d even be able meet her in person.
“I stood out in a sea of resumes, but with the job market this tough, even a #HireMe campaign isn’t enough,” Cadloni said in her farewell blog post. So what’s her advice for job-seekers who are considering a similar campaign? “Set yourself apart from other candidates by owning your online presence. … Write a blog about the industry trends in your market. … Confidence is catchy.”