Do Your Online Homework!

We are proud to debut a new blog series,  "How I Stopped Worrying and Got the Job", guest posts from past workshop attendees, new acquaintances and other clever job seekers who used their noggins and landed their first job.

Jacklyn Cremer attended one of our first AfterSchool Career Workshops sessions and graduated from KU with a Bachelors in Marketing and now has a full-time job in account services at ER Marketing. More about her job search can be found at JacklynCremer.com.  This is how she used the Internet to search more than job boards.

“You don’t stand a tinker’s chance of producing successful advertising unless you start by doing your homework.  I have always found this extremely tedious, but there is no substitute for it.  First study the product you are going to advertise.  The more you know about it, the more likely you are to come up with a big idea for selling it.” – David Ogilvy, Ogilvy on Advertising.

As a marketer searching for a job, I was the product.

The hunt is about finding a job that really fits with what you want to do and will help you to reach your career goals.  If you do your homework, then you will find a company, a job description, and a location that fits your interests and skills.  When you know everything there is to know about the company and the position, it’s easy to let the company know that you are the right choice for the job!

Google Yourself

For starters, research yourself.  Find out what’s out there and make Google send your message. For example, during my job search, I decided to go by “Jacklyn” instead of “Jackie.” This not only looked more professional, it also ensured that when potential employers Googled my name, they found me — not the secretary general of the European Green party.

Make sure your professional web content appears on the first page of Google results.

I have a web page, which hosts my blog and portfolio.  I have also built up my LinkedIn groups, connections (107 connections link me to 816,395+ professionals), and profile.

Have a personal branding statement (elevator speech) to be able to express to others what you do and what type of work you’re looking for.  To do this you have to figure out parts of yourself that aren’t on Google. Do you want to work for a big company? Small? What are your top priorities when looking for a new job?  I wanted to gain experience in an open environment that wouldn’t mind my “idea vomit” and strong opinions. I also wanted to work full-time and receive benefits.

Research Possible Employers

I knew I wanted a company that appreciated social media and online presence, and I knew I wanted to stay in the Kansas City area.  In addition to browsing Indeed.com for job listings, I used every method I could fathom to find names of marketing companies in Kansas City.  I visited their sites, their Linkedin and Facebook groups, Twitter feeds, news sites, everything!  I found out everything I could about them and if I had any connections at the company as well. Then, I applied to the ones where I might be a good fit. I went for quality with my applications, not quantity.  I spent time on my cover letters and on knowing what type of job I was offering to do!

Edit Your Resume. Again.

That list of past jobs won’t get you the A+; it’s just a first, or second, or fiftieth draft.  Here’s some homework–edit it again. Have others you trust edit it. Always make it fit the job you’re applying for and ALWAYS check for typos.  And if your email address is SaSsYPaSSioN69@gmail.com… Take a minute to sign up for a new email address that says your NAME and that's all. No numbers. No xoxo.

I Was Prepared, Will You Be?

When a marketing agency reached out to me, I felt prepared to use the tactics I’d been using to help myself land the job. Here’s what happened:

As a member of many local professional groups on Linkedin, I posted an introduction of myself.  Barely a week later, someone found my post through the AAF-KC group and passed my name along to his coworker who needed to hire an account coordinator. He looked me up and visited my website, then reached out through a comment on my blog, asking me to send in my resume. I instantly jumped in to my homework.  I researched the company, tied their culture and the job description into my cover letter, and replied to one of their tweets for good measure. I also contacted Kathryn Lorenzen, who knew one of the partners at the agency (Linkedin told me!) and made sure my references knew they might be getting a call.

Making multiple impressions on their staff, especially through online media, impressed them.  I don’t think the resume, interview, or thank you notes hurt my chances either, because soon after – I was hired!

Working with Kathryn and Lisa from AfterSchool has given me homework. They’ve suggested next steps all along the way and their words from my one-day conference still linger in my mind the way good advice does. I never felt like I was done with my homework, and it helped to always know a next step. And that next step for me was choosing not to participate in ‘this economy’ and to be confident in my ability to find a good job.  It worked.

My social networking and online presence let employers know I was out there – waiting to impress them.  Feel free to contact me with any job search, resume edits, or networking questions — I’d love to hear from you!  And keep up to date with possible employers that sound awesome and regularly check their ‘careers’ section.  If you’re experienced in marketing, graphic design, or interactive websites and apps -- ER Marketing might be hiring!


Congratulations Jackie! After attending one of our first AfterSchool Career Workshops sessions she put what she learned into action and landed her first job! AfterSchool Career Workshops can give the college senior or recent graduate a leg up on the competition by giving our attendees the power to supercharge their job search, get noticed and get hired. We also offer one-to-one private coaching and small group private coaching. Know an upcoming graduate? We also offer gift certificates good toward any service we offer! For more information contact us at info@succeedafterschool.com




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Comments (2) Trackbacks (1)
  1. You got a nice content and very informative…I really remember this points…

    Good Job!

  2. Thanks! We appreciate your feedback!

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