Five Things To Do If You Get Laid Off From Your Marketing Position

I sense that a good many marketers are getting laid off due to the current economic situation. If you get laid off, what can you do to get back on your feet and land a new job? I’m certainly no expert on job searching. But here are a few things that have worked for me in the past. I would suggest you give them a try.


    1. Work For Free. Let’s be honest, most laid off professionals are not spending 40 hours a week looking for a new job. But that’s a problem, because you have to address your job search like it is a full time job. But how many resumes can you send out? There might not be 40 hours of job searching to do. Here is a solution, call up a local firm and tell them your situation and that you are interested in marketing for them three days a week for free…no strings attached. Believe it or not, the first firm you call will tell you to jump off a bridge. But the third or fourth firm you call will take you up on the offer. The best case scenario here is that the company sees your value and hires you in some capacity. The worst case is that you develop a good professional reference who feels he or she “owes you.” My very first real job came when I called the South Jersey Chamber of Commerce and told them that I would work for free over the summer. In a matter of a couple weeks, the President called me into her office and said that although they didn’t have a lot of money, they would pay me (I think it was something like $10 per hour). I think I agreed before she finished the sentence. That was more than any of my friends was making at the time. But after the meeting my supervisor said, “you should have asked for more.” But the point is, they had an open position, they just didn’t know it. In this world, you have to give value before you get value. Please note that anyone who has ever followed this particular piece of advice has landed a job in a matter of a month or two!


    1. Contact Companies That You Want to Work For. If you’ve ever hired someone, you most likely know the hiring dilemma. You hire someone because things are too busy and you need more staff. But when you are so busy, it’s almost impossible to take time to write an ad, review countless resumes, conduct interviews, call references, and make some sort of decision. That’s why I say that the majority of open positions are not advertised. Many times there is a job waiting for you at a company you want to work for. Call them and tell them what you can do for them and how it will benefit their company.


    1. Bypass the HR Department.  There are so many applicants out there right now that most HR Departments are getting flooded with resumes (many of them better than yours). But how many of those resumes get reviewed by decisions makers? Your best bet is to spend maybe fifteen minutes finding out exactly who makes hiring decisions for marketing positions. Then contact those people directly. In the worst case scenario, you will look like a go getter.


    1. Don’t Take Silence For an Answer. From my experience, decision making is often the biggest area of procrastination for those who hire. We don’t have a crystal ball to see into the future, so if you don’t work out…it is going to be our fault. If one of the applicants showed some initiative and called to prompt us to hire, it would make our decision much easier. But guess how many people call once after an interview? Maybe one or two. Guess how many people call multiple times after an interview? It is very rare for a person to do that (heck you don’t want to bug the decision maker). Unfortunately, their thinking is terribly flawed. After I interviewed with Syska Hennessy, I must have called 20 times. I left multiple messages, not with HR but with the decision maker. And I called and I called until I got him. And they hired me. It is very hard to tell a marketer that exhibits that kind of tenacity that you won’t hire them.


  1. Help Your Network. Yes, everybody tells you to work your network when looking for a job. And although that is good advice, the problem is that you rarely have contact with your network and have not maintained relationships with people you have worked with in the past. In all honesty, this probably contributed to you getting laid off in the first place. A strong network of people who are willing to help you out is the best job search tool money can buy. But you can’t expect them to help you if you do nothing for them. Keep up with your contacts, show them that they are important and that you care, and above all else make sure you help everybody everyday (yes, that’s where the title of this site comes from). I got hired for my job not because I sent in an application; not because I saw an open position; not because I wowed them with my good looks and charm. I did none of those things. I got my job because a contact of mine got a hold of my resume and placed it on the decision maker’s desk. And consequently, I spent the next five years making that guy’s professional life as easy as I could.  And not too long ago he said to me, “if you ever need a job, I’ll get you one in a second.” And I believe him.
Ok, so you don’t believe these things will work. Here is my challenge: if you are looking for a job, do these five things for three months. If you do not find a job in those three months, comment on this article and list what you did and explain how it didn’t work. I will then do everything in my power to find you a position. So prove me wrong! What do you have to lose?
Learn more about Matt Handal in our About the Authors page.


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