Measuring Costs to Benefits on the Advertising Job Search

Joe Weinlick
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As any past or present job seeker knows, a job search takes a great deal of time, energy, and resources. If you are applying for advertising jobs, the pressure to display your creative skills and campaign prowess can be exceptionally high. Before you invest your energy in launching a full-assault print, digital, and social media self-marketing campaign, it is crucial to assess which strategies will have the highest payoff.

According to a recent story from MediaBistro, the employment outlook in the United States is solid, but not booming. As a result, advertising professionals must deal with a high level of competition as they look for new jobs. In your quest to stand out from the rest of the candidates, it is easy to go overboard by creating professional online profiles, eye-catching resumes, and print and digital versions of your portfolio.

To avoid wasting time and money on self-promotion strategies that have a low return on investment, you can analyze the costs and benefits of each option. Make a list of each potential strategy and estimate the amount of time and money each task will require. When searching for advertising jobs, you might include items like updating your social media profiles, creating a targeted resume for each position, and creating print versions of your professional portfolio.

After you list the potential strategies, compare the benefits to the types of advertising jobs you are seeking. If you are applying to companies that deal primarily in digital advertising, for example, a printed portfolio may be a worthless investment. Instead, your energy may be better spent updating your digital portfolio to show off your Internet prowess. If you want to work in print advertising, however, a physical portfolio can leave a lasting impression with a potential employer.

Narrow your list to the two or three items that will put you in the best light for your target employers. Focus most of your efforts on those items and spend any remaining time cleaning up the other areas on the list. In doing so, you can present a strong professional image to potential employers without sacrificing all of your time and resources.

For many professionals, social media is a tricky area to navigate during the search for advertising jobs. Unless you are applying for advertising jobs that require social networks of a certain size, it is usually best to minimize the time spent on personal social media during the job search. Remove any questionable content or make your profiles private. Don't forget Instagram and Twitter; your tweets and photos can tell an employer a great deal about you. Update your LinkedIn profile and make it public for the duration of the search. By controlling your online privacy settings, you can help guide employers to the most relevant data.

When you take time to eliminate high-cost, low-return strategies from your search for advertising jobs, you can ensure that your time and money are well spent. In the process, you will create a clear, strong professional image that is more likely to resonate with employers and help you score your dream job.


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