Job Search – 3 ways to differentiate yourself in the job market

How many times have you been rejected or even ignored by potential employers? Ever wonder how to market yourself better? How do you stand out from the competition? This week’s podcast is with Terry O’Reilly, a leader in the Canadian advertising industry, the man behind the popular CBC series The Age of Persuasion, and the winner of over 400 national and international marketing awards.

This column is brought to you by the number 60. Terry graduated from Ryerson’s RTA program and sent out 60 resumes to 60 advertising agencies. The results – 60 rejection letters (those were the days they actually let you know!) He finally got hired at a small radio station in Burlington, and eventually found work with an advertising agency 3 years later. Terry ended up working for a number of the most creative advertising companies in Canada including Chiat/Day. He went on to found his own company Pirate Radio & Television with offices in Toronto and New York City. Terry shared with me his “secrets” to an effective job search campaign.

We live in a world full of choices; there are over 800,000 different options at your average Starbucks. Terry has used his passion and persuasive abilities to get you and I to notice and select his clients’ products and services over the other options that we have as consumers. Advertising – like a job search campaign – is all about influencing the buyer (or hiring manager) in their choices. Terry’s successful advertising career has been built upon the same three factors that successful marketing campaigns are built upon: persistence, persuasion, and authenticity. Terry shared, “ a brand needs to live up to its promise – of actually being everything it says it is.”

Instead of 60, now think about the number 3.

1. Persistence: How many times have you been exposed to a Tim Horton’s ad this year? I will hazard a guess more than 60 times (TV, radio, and bill boards);

2. Persuasion: Tim Horton’s ads are simple and made to look inviting (think of that Blueberry donut campaign); and,

3. Authenticity: I think this is Tim Horton’s secret weapon. Canadians are ultimately loyal to the brand because we trust them.

Advertising firms are constantly testing new campaigns. Take my word for this. If you try out Terry’s strategy you won’t be disappointed by the results. Be persistent, persuasive, and authentic. Heck, it may not take you 60 resumes to get what you want. Oh, by the way, there was one other key lesson that Terry shared: “If you are passionate for what you do for a living you will always get the opportunities that you are looking for. With passion you can make your own luck.”

Want to stand out? This week, remember the career success recipe: persistence x persuasion x authenticity = Great results

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Persistent & persuasive, along the road with you!
Alan