How to Get Into Advertising When You Can’t
Many, many moons ago, it took me five months to leave my parents’ basement. I just couldn’t get a copywriting gig in advertising. I visited. I wrote. I emailed. I sent fancy direct mail campaigns. (Now that I think about it, the “WILL WORK FOR PEANUTS” campaign was a bad choice.)
So if you’re a recent grad who’s down on your luck, I’ve been there. And I know how you can not only kick the advertising door down, but throw an axe into it Jack Nicholson-style. You have something I don’t. And you have something my bosses don’t. And their bosses don’t. You are hip. More specifically, you know what social media is doing and where it’s going. By the time I find out, Night Court is off the air.
In the June issue of Fast Company, Comedy Central president Michele Ganeless said her company was performing “reverse mentorship.” How brilliant. At least once a day, I pick the brains of my more “hip” coworkers, but Comedy Central has made it an official daily meeting.
This is where you come in. Call the creatives and the account people and the public relations people and tell them you’ll give them a free full day of brainstorming and brain pickin’. Tell them what’s hip and what’s not. Show them how stuff works and the mistakes you’ve seen advertisers make. Bring examples (not just your iPhone).
This way, your foot’s in the door. You’ll meet people. Get business cards. And interact. And hey, if the people you’re giving advice to end up being jerks, then great, you’ll know where not to work in the future.
Now what’s this I hear about The Instagram Machine?