By Justin Premick
Competition for quality jobs is tough in any field. However, the stakes and competition aren’t the same for every position – some positions require you to really bring your “A” game if you want to land them.
Nowhere is this more true than in marketing. The hiring process is essentially an audition of your marketing skills: can you persuade someone to hire you?
I’ve hired for a number of marketing jobs over the years. I’ve found that top candidates approach interviews not as employees trying to get hired, but as consultants trying to land a client.
How can you use this approach to land your marketing job?
It’s All About the Research
A great consultant wouldn’t walk into a pitch not knowing much about their potential client, would they?
Of course not, and neither should you. So do your homework before you even get to the interview. A few questions to find the answers to:
- Who does the company market to?
- Who are their top 3 competitors?
- How do they stack up against their competitors?
- In what 2-3 areas do they shine, and in what areas are they weak?
- What message does their marketing try to spread?
- How is it different from competitors’ messages?
To find these answers:
- Read the company’s website and their competitors’ sites.
- Read industry publication sites, independent blogs, and discussion forums.
- Google phrases like “(company) sucks” and “love (company)” and “(company) vs. (competitor)” to see what people outside the company really think.
Come In With an Action Plan
A good consultant doesn’t sell time, but results. They bring a proposal to pitch. So should you.
- Identify 3 areas where the company’s marketing falls short. What aren’t they doing that they should be? How would doing it drive better results?
- Make specific recommendations for each area. These are actions items that you’ll take the lead on when you start.
- Turn your #1 recommendation into a 6-month action plan with milestones. This shows that you can tackle large projects and are eager to be judged on your performance.
- List spec
Last But Not Least Great consultants refine their pitches constantly. So should you.
Practice your pitch.
Identify likely questions you’ll get, then write out and practice answers to them.
Once your pitch is refined, it’s time to land that client – er, employer. Happy interviewing!
About Justin Premick
Justin is an award-winning email marketing expert and the Director of Education Marketing for AWeber, a leading small business email marketing software company. Justin teaches small businesses how to build profitable customer relationships through email marketing, and is responsible for recruitment of AWeber’s education marketing team.