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New Job Search Ideas -- 50 Cents Each

The following post is courtesy of the Recruiting Blogswap:

From: Kevin Donlin

I've written before that you can learn more about finding a job by emulating marketing experts than by reading every employment book in the library.

And I still believe that's true.

To illustrate, here's a tactic from Bob Bly, publisher of The Direct Response Letter (www.bly.com) and author of more than 70 books on advertising, copywriting, and other topics.

Bly suggests the following for publishers of email newsletters (e-zines), but it applies to your job search, too, as I'll explain below:

"Whenever I am in a used bookstore or -- even better -- a library selling old books, I look for and buy old business books. At my local library, they are 50 cents each. If you are looking for content for your e-zine, I urge you to do the same with books related to your topic. Why?

"Thumb through any old business book and I can virtually guarantee that within 2 minutes, you'll find at least one gem -- a great quote, a neat idea, a list of how-to tips -- you can use as a short article in your e-zine, on your blog, or in other how-to writings."

As an example, Bly shares a marketing tip he found in an old book bought at the local library for 50 cents. "I flipped through it when I got home and found the item in about 90 seconds," says Bly.

Here's what he found, from the book, "Swim With the Sharks Without Being Eaten Alive," by Harvey Mackay:

"It's common practice for business owners to paint the company name and logo on the side of trucks and vans.

"But if your business or its customers are located in a city, you should also paint your company name, logo, and web site URL on the tops of your trucks and vans. That way it will be seen by prospects located on the second floor and higher of office buildings."

Now. How can you adapt this tactic to your job search? Here are three ways to get hired faster using Bly's method of searching used bookstores and library book sales for ideas ...

1) Improve your cover letter

Most cover letters are written like birthday present wrapping paper, to be quickly torn through and thrown away.

  • Tip: Use Bly's idea to research your industry, then sprinkle your next cover letter with an ideas to make or save money for an employer. You will likely get more calls to interview.

2) Raise your profile

From accounting to zoology, you'll find a job faster if more people know who you are.

  • Tip: Write 5-10 blog postings on topics relevant to your industry, by tracking down evergreen ideas from old books. You would raise your visibility and increase the likelihood of getting called by employers/recruiters. Also, Google would be more likely to find your blog postings, giving you even more visibility.

3) Give a presentation

LinkedIn lets you upload PowerPoint presentations to your profile. Are you taking advantage of this and letting employers see how smart you are?

  • Tip: Create a 10-slide presentation that showcases your skills and expertise, based on research you do using Bly's idea. Then, upload it to your LinkedIn profile. Passively, your presentation can be found by recruiters and employers. Actively, you can ask hiring managers to view your PowerPoint during a phone interview. Imagine the effect of saying, "Ms. Boss Lady, if you're online, would you have a minute to view a presentation I created for our phone interview? It's called, '7 Ways ACE Corp. Can Save on Procurement Costs in the Next 90 Days.'"

Think you don't have time for this?

Think again. If you're unemployed and have been looking for work 8-10 hours a day, why not take 5 hours a week from activities that aren't producing results -- like applying for advertised jobs online, for example -- and try this research method for 14 days?

If perusing old books for evergreen ideas to share with employers doesn't work for you, I'd like to know. And if it does produce interviews, I'd like to know that, too. Now, go out and make your own luck!

Kevin Donlin is co-author of Guerrilla Resumes. Since 1996, he has provided job-search help to more than 20,000 people. Author of 3 books, Kevin has been interviewed by The New York Times, USA Today, Fox News, CBS Radio and others.

Article courtesy of the Recruiting Blogswap, a content exchange service sponsored by CollegeRecruiter.com, a leading site for college students looking for internships and recent graduates searching for entry level jobs and other career opportunities.


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