By Christina M. Nguyen
The coronavirus pandemic has led to millions of people losing their jobs. If you’ve kept your job as a marketer, you’re likely to be working from home and doing everything you can to hold on to your current opportunity. Indeed, with fewer jobs available in the field and social distancing still being implemented in most of the world, the opportunity for new employment will be challenging to say the least. But it’s not impossible. Here are a few ways you can improve your visibility among hiring managers and recruiters and increase the chances of finding the right fit at a particular organization:
1. Network online
People make online acquaintances and friends all the time. Now is the time to ramp that up and in more professional ways. First, think about joining social media groups in the marketing industry on platforms such as Facebook or LinkedIn and, most importantly, engage: Like the posts you identify with and comment on them to add your insights. Perhaps someone will find your thoughts interesting and will want to message you, kicking off a new connection and an interesting conversation.
Secondly, particularly, on LinkedIn, consider posting your own blog or thoughts about things that are happening in the field. Putting yourself out does a few things: It begins positioning you as an expert in the space, where you can feature your perspective and point of view. It also signals that confident enough to be open to feedback, which will help you to continue to learn and gain perspective.
Finally, seek out online professional events online such as webinars or even interactive hackathons. Don’t worry, hackathons aren’t just for computer programmers – many need designers and marketers as part of their overall concept and strategy. You can find a lot of interesting ones on Devpost. (One note: Hackathons can be time-intensive with some groups collaborating with others for hours.)
2. Develop new skills
Even if you’re still a full-time employee, working from home during this pandemic period has probably translated into less time commuting. Instead of the hours you spend sitting in traffic, you can use that additional window to learn new marketing skills. Even if you’re happy with your current specialty or line of work, it’s always important to keep broadening your skill set. After all, your interests could shift or you could be asked to take on new work at any time in a tight- budget environment. The other reason to continue to learn is that further down the road, you’ll likely find you have more opportunities, as a result of a broader skill set.
Look up other marketing skills you’re interested in and don’t hesitate to wander outside your comfort zone. For example, taking a marketing analytics could help anyone, from a specialist to a vice president. Google offers its Google Analytics Academy free and makes learning pretty easy. Find My Marketer also offers virtual or in-person courses in all the core areas of digital marketing.
Recently, more and more marketers are also learning coding, so if you’re really up for a highly technical challenge, check out Free Code Camp.
3. Assess a target company’s pandemic response
Before applying to a new position with your new skills, there’s one vital piece you can’t leave out in your company research – how the company handles the current pandemic.
Every company deals with this virus differently. How they’re managing it reflects their ethics, morals, and business strategies. If the company abruptly laid off several employees via a short Zoom call, you’d probably rather not work for them anyway. However, if they’ve donated a significant amount of money to a good cause during this period, then there’s probably hope that they will also take care of employees as well.
One thing you can do: Look up the company on Glassdoor or Indeed, and listen in on their social media accounts, especially if they’re a smaller business. The more angry or bitter comments you see, the more you should question whether you’d like to be among their ranks or not.
4. Take on part-time work and get to know recruiters
Because many companies are cutting costs in this period, some of the roles they are filling may not be full-time but part-time. One good place to start are staffing agencies like Mondo, Addeco, RobertHalf, The Boss Group, or even more local ones such as Creative Circle here in DC, which are always on the lookout for great contracted talent. And if a contractor does a great job, the company might bring on that individual for full-time work. If you're a more senior executive, it's also important to find out who the local or national recruiting firms are that can help raise your visibility at various companies. Ask your network who might have contacts and ask for introductions.
5. Refine your phone and video interview skills
Even those skilled at in-person meetings can struggle with phone and/or video interviews. Being unable to see the interviewer’s full non-verbal responses can often translate into a certain awkwardness, where interviewees have to rely primarily on the tone of voice or maybe some facial expressions (for video).
However, a couple tips can help:
As mentioned, a sensitive and empathetic response to the pandemic are crucial to a company’s image. They’re also crucial to yours, so show mindfulness, empathy, and understanding for any unprecedented difficulties the company may be going through. You’re there to help them and the customers, not just to gain a paycheck. Showing these qualities in tough times will benefit you long after the virus has gone.
At Find My Marketer, we're committed to helping you find the right opportunity. Make sure to create an account and apply to your dream job today.