I've followed the author of this week's book on Twitter for quite a while, as he's one of the Social Media "big dogs" who seems to end up speaking on a lot of programs, and has quite a record of successfully using these tools for his business. While not about the job search, this is another of those books whose advice plays as well for individuals developing their "personal brands" (which seems, unfortunately, to be a key element in getting hired these days) as to the businesses to which it is specifically directed.
If you are "allergic to business books" (as I used to be before taking over as The Job Stalker), this is one that you will find VERY agreeable, as most of what Scott Stratten talks about in UnMarketing: Stop Marketing. Start Engaging. is based on his own trial-and-error experiences and is funny and conversational, while still getting across a vast lot of highly useful information.
Fortunately, Scott (@UnMarketing on Twitter) was kind enough to answer my questions, making the effort to address the job-search aspects core to this blog. The Job Stalker interview follows the break:
Q: Briefly, what's your background?
Funny thing about the topic of jobs, I started out in Human Resources.
That's what I went to college for and ended as the HR person at
Goodwill Toronto's head office. I then went out to be a sales trainer,
which moved me towards the marketing world I'm in today.
Q: Have you had notable job-transition experiences?
I walked out of my last corporate job with 60 cents in the bank and a
new baby. Looking back, that may not have been the smartest move in the
world, but it certainly motivated me to get my own business going full
Q: What's "Unmarketing" and why a book about it?
A: UnMarketing is the ability to stay in front of your marketplace so when they have the need for your product or service, they choose you.
Q: How might somebody "between jobs" apply this?
I always tell business owners "people do business with those they know,
like and trust" and the same goes for hiring. When I was in charge of
hiring at Goodwill Toronto, that's exactly what I would do when an
opening came up. I would say "who do I know, like and trust". Only if I
didn't know anyone that fit that, would I start to even request resumes.
Most jobs are filled before they ever hit the want ads.
Q: If you had just ONE piece of advice for today's job searcher, what would that be?
People hire based on who they know first. You need to get known by
building relationships and social media is a perfect venue for you to
show your personality and knowledge without coming off as desperate to
get a job.
Q: What do you feel makes your book unique?
A: The back cover
for starters :) It's all fake testimonials since a lot of them on other
books are either written by the author, paid for, or just plain made
up. Also it has 50+ sections, all bite-sized, created for easy
Q: Aside from your book, what resources do you recommend?
A: Strengths Finder 2.0 is a great tool for people to help them see what matches their skill set.
Q: Any additional words of wisdom?
Just remember, anything you say on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc. is
"out there". Don't say anything you wouldn't want to see on a
billboard with your name, face, phone number and a prospective employer
Needless to say, from Stratten's perspective,
getting out there and getting known by a wide circle (or, I suppose, a
tightly-focused small circle) of contacts is the key to finding a job, as if they don't know you, folks are far less likely to hire
you. One would think that this would be a ringing endorsement of doing
a whole bunch of networking, but one of the last chapters in here is
called Why Networking Events Are Evil, and in that he outlines
both the pitfalls of these events (all too familiar to me, given the
vast number I make it out to), and strategies to make the most of them
(notably, build your circles virtually first via Twitter).
you have an interest in Social Media, from either a professional or
personal basis, I highly recommend this book, and, as I note in my review, the material here is coming from a true "digital native" (which is night-and-day from the situation of the last book covered in this space!), whose focus is on making it work for you and your customers (hiring managers?).