Sunday, January 31, 2010

Networking Events, Week of 02/01 - 02/12

Hey Everyone!

There aren't any networking events this week that I know of, but a couple of webcasts. However, there are two really good networking events next week that I thought you might want to get on your calendar since space might be limited.

This week's webcasts are as follows (click on the link for more info, or to register)...

Next week's networking events are as follows...

Prolango Career Mixer
Monday, February 8th from 6:00 - 9:00 P.M.
Maggiano's Little Italy
10455 NE 8th ST
Bellevue, WA 98004

I've been to a couple of Prolango's events, and they were well worth my time. This event is free.
Click here more information, or to register.

PSAMA and Ad Club Seattle Presents
Chalk Talk: Super Bowl Ad Replay
Wednesday, February 10th at 5:30 P.M.
FSN Lounge Qwest Field
PSAMA Members $30.00
Non-members $40.00

For more information, or to register, click here.
Have a great week!
Suzanne LeMere

Thursday, January 28, 2010

User-Generated Content Inspiration

Can the Super Bowl show us where advertising is headed?
Last year I posted a link to
CareerBuilder's 2009 Super Bowl ad, from Wieden + Kennedy. Then in May, the online recruiting company said goodbye to the agency and opened up the creative development to the general masses. Similar to Doritos, who last year won USA Today's annual Super Bowl ad poll, CareerBuilder devised a contest to drive user-generated content. Nearly 1,000 entries later, the company has posted the 3 finalists to determine which spot will air during "the big game." They're also sharing behind the scenes footage and interviews with the spots' creators. Below is one of the :30 ads, which were produced by the company's in-house advertising group in California.

This year Doritos had over 4,000 entries (battling for a possible $5 Million in prizes) in its CrashTheSuperBowl contest. They've whittled the competition down to 6 finalists, 3 of which will air during the game. Below is the best of the bunch.

Both companies utilized social media (Facebook and YouTube) as a way to promote the contests and drive traffic to their micro-sites. And rather than debut the highly anticipated ads during the game, as most advertisers do, each company has reaped the benefits of additional reach, media impressions, and buzz by sharing content along the way. Awarding prizes and follow-up press coverage will only ensure that the campaigns live a long, full life.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Notes from 1/22/10 OCA Meeting, Job News

Several topics of discussion at last week's meeting, mostly to do with follow-up from our 1/15 OCA meeting.

After everyone introduced themselves, we discussed the power and importance of the 30-sec elevator pitch. Given the information we've received on how hiring decisions can sometimes be made within the 1st couple minutes (or few seconds) of an interview, your answer to "So, tell me about yourself" can make or break an opportunity. This should be something that you have prepared (and have practiced) to pitch your 'unique selling proposition.' Clear, concise, and relevant. And if you can have one unique and memorable line - your tagline - that someone can take away, even better.

Career coaches - worth the price? From what I've seen, folks who have made the investment to work with a professional have tended to reap the rewards. If you know you have an area you want to work on specifically or just need help getting started, a career coach can provide a wealth of knowledge and advice. Just be aware that a job search can be subjective - so depending on who you work with, you may get differing opinions on some topics. Not a bad thing, especially if you get a 2nd opinion. And from the advice we've received during past OCA guest speaker appearances, we've also seen consistencies with the general approach of Job Search 2.0.

On the right-hand side of this blog are two other blogs from Seattle area career coach's, Matt Youngquist (who visited us 2 weeks ago) and Cris Janzen (who was a guest speaker last summer). Both are very experienced and have helped numerous people with job searches and career transitions. Take a look at their blogs, which will provide a good sense of their style and the passion they have for helping people.
For this Friday's meeting (1/29), Paul Verner has offered to bring in and share some of Matt Youngquist's materials, so people can get a better idea of Matt's services.

Job News!
Maicie Jones just announced that she'll be heading across the country to work for the Advisory Board Company (a healthcare group) in Washington D.C. She'll be a consultant within their syndicated research division.

Karen Nissen has also just landed a job and starts next Monday in medical sales, as an Account Executive with AMR (American Medical Response.)
Both ladies, in their notes to announce the news, said that networking was key in landing the positions.
Congrats, Maicie and Karen!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Networking Events, Week of 01/24/10

Hey Everyone!
There are a couple of exciting networking events coming up this week.

Seattle Job Social is putting on their first event of the season on Tuesday, January 26th at Twist in Belltown. They claim that there will be a number of recruiters there for people to mingle with, so check the website below for further details. There's a $5.00 admission fee (cash only) at the door.

South Sound PRSA is having their Quarterly Social this week. It's on Wednesday, January 27th from 4:45 - 6:45 P.M. in Tacoma at Chevy's Fresh Mex (3702 S Fife ST). Come socialize with a number of working professionals in the Public Relations industry. Check out the website below for further details. I don't believe there is any cost involved for attending this event.

This week's free Webinars are as follows:
(for more information, or to register, click the title-link)

Tuesday, January 26th at 11:00 A.M. CST

Wednesday, January 27th at 12:00 P.M. CST
How Sponsorship Adds True Purpose to Marketing Efforts

Wednesday, January 27th at 12:00 P.M. PST
Hidden Job Market Teleseminar

Thursday, January 28th at 12:00 P.M. CST
In Brands We Trust

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Notes from 1/15/10 OCA Meeting

Welcome to several new OCA members:
- Bill Munroe, high tech marketing strategist, who was most recently with Microscan as Vice President, Marketing & Corporate Development.
- Robert Lani, most recently a real estate professional, is looking to get back into marketing.
- Carol Tompkins, graphic designer, who was with the Seattle Art Museum before enrolling in a Web Design certification program.

Huge thank you to Matt Youngquist, our guest speaker at last week's OCA meeting. Matt, a career coach who has helped thousands of people in the Puget Sound area, met with the group and answered all sorts of job search questions.

Q) How should we handle being labeled as "over-qualified"?
A) 1st, examine the reasons for the label: you can be considered a flight risk, more expensive than other candidates, and as a possible threat to the hiring manager - if they are insecure at all and worried that you could do or take their job.
How to overcome ... Anticipate the objection, and address up front during the interview. Get the discussion going, and be able to answer this question, "Why would your additional experience be considered valuable?"

Q) Should we "dumb down" our resumes?
A) Matt doesn't recommend it. It's extremely easy to vet candidates through sources like LinkedIn. You may want to modify some things, but you don't want to necessarily hide experience.

Q) Thoughts on cover letters?
A) Recommend a 'cover note.' Text only e-mail, with which you attach your resume, in the following format:
- I'm applying for the role of ___ that I saw posted on ___.
- Briefly discuss the single most relevant point, what you bring. Say something they haven't heard before or say it in a way they haven't heard before.
- Thank you very much. I look forward to hearing from you...

Q) How to handle a negative work history (ex. company went out of business)?
A) Frame around business circumstances, external factors. Never blame anyone.

Q) What trends are you seeing?
A) The market has picked up, and there's been a more positive vibe. More people are getting offers.

Q) Should we expect to lower our salary expectations? How to handle the salary question during interviews?
A) There's been a market adjustment, so be prepared to be flexible. Matt suggests the "RFP formula." R - give them a Range. Under $50k, provide a $10k range. $50-$100k, give a $20k range. $100k plus, $30k range. F - be Flexible. P - Probe back, ask their range.

Q) Phone interview advice?
A) Talk 1/2 as much - on the phone it will seem like double. Modulate your voice - you don't have the non-verbal cues to rely on. Have your notes with you - it's an open book quiz.

Q) Advice on the "greatest weakness" question?
A) Avoid the cliches. Now that job descriptions tend to contain everything and the kitchen sink, isolate something from the list that you don't have the amount of experience they're looking for. Make it something that's not a deal killer.

Q) Thank You notes.
A) Best is a handwritten note, e-mail at a minimum. Do NOT not follow up. Keep it short and sweet. If you feel you're an underdog or need to address something that could have gone better during an interview, it's OK to address a perceived weakness.

Q) Networking advice?
A) Don't make the mistake of only networking within your industry. Make a list of everyone you know. Send a note - you'll be surprised with who responds. Most people aren't truly networking. Don't just let people know you're looking for work. Ask for help: "Who do you know at Company X?"
Market yourself: 1)Message - develop a sticky, clever elevator pitch. 2)Reach - how many people are you talking to? 3)Frequency - continue to contact people on your list.

Q) What is the #1 thing that Matt says employers and recruiters tell him:
A) They are surprised at how candidates are not prepared. Spend hours preparing for interviews.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Webcasts Week of 01/18/2010

Hi Everyone!
I don't know of any networking events this week, but there are three webcasts coming up.
They are as follows:

01/19/2010 @ 10:00 A.M. PST
Turning the "Jobs-to-be-Done" Innovation Theory into Practice
Speaker: Tony Ulwick, CEO, Strategyn

01/20/2010 @ 10:00 A.M. PST
Feed the Content Beast -- a practical, afforadable approach to create the content that supports your lead management and sales enablement initiatives.
Featuring: Ardath Albee, CEO of Marketing Interactions and author of eMarketing Strategies for the Complex Sale

01/21/2010 @ 10:00 A.M. PST
How Merrill Lynch Optimizes Inbound Interactions with Real-Time Decisioning
Speakers: Aaron Tellier, Director of CRM Strategy and Implementation, Merrill Lynch
Mark Smith, EVP, Protrait Software

Just click the link for more information, or to register. Best of all, they're free!

It looks like there will be at least one networking event next week, if not more so stay tuned. Also, if you know of something coming up and I missed it, please send me an email so I can follow up with another post.

Have a great week!
Suzanne LeMere

Thursday, January 14, 2010

LEMONADE - The Movie. Coming Soon.

Anyone who has been involved with OCA for a while has heard me talk about Erik Proulx and his site: A constant source of information and inspiration, Erik's blog has been a sounding board for the industry's unemployed since November, 2008, when he lost his job as a Sr. Copywriter at Arnold in Boston.

Erik discovered (and promotes) that, "It's not a pink slip. It's a blank page." The chance that we have to pursue a dream, make positive changes in our lives, and the ability to reinvent ourselves can far outweigh the negative of having lost a job.

Along the way, Erik has heard some amazing stories, and in 2009 he wrote and produced a documentary, titled "Lemonade," detailing some of these tales of inspiration. It's been an ongoing process, and Erik has enlisted many talented creatives who have helped make the film a reality.

Having finished it recently, Erik has been 'on tour' sharing the film. And as a special 'thank you' to those who have supported the Lemonade, Erik has posted it online for a special 2-day sneak peek.
To see the trailer, visit:
For info on seeing the full-length version today (Thurs), visit
the PFTA site.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Notes from 1/08/2010 OCA Meeting, Job News!

Welcome to several new members:
- Karen Nissen, most recently with Comcast Spotlight, where she managed advertising sales for more than 15 years.
- Jackie Peterson, owner of Ad Strategies & Cross Words. 15+ years of marketing and advertising experience.
- Donna Sellers, currently consulting in the Seattle area, was most recently with Microsoft where she managed brand strategy for Windows and and MSN.
- Michele Meston also comes to the group with a myriad of marketing and advertising experience.

At last week's meeting, we talked about a wide variety of topics pertaining to the job hunt.
Most interesting of the subjects was that of perspective employers getting back (or not getting back) to candidates about his or her status in the process. Consensus of the group is to "give the hiring manager / HR the benefit of the doubt" ... we know they're busy, we know they're swamped with filtering resumes, conducting interviews, while also juggling work. But - when it comes down to a decision concerning final candidates, common sense says that we should hear one way or the other.
Ideally, a personal call is made, where a candidate that's being passed on is given a chance to ask for feedback.
In the end, what hiring companies need to keep in mind is that every interaction is a chance to make a positive impression.
In today's world... can a company afford to make a negative one?

It was great to get the thoughts of everyone in the group. It will be interesting to get Matt Youngquist's take on this and other subjects during this week's OCA meeting, 1/15.

Job News!
- Greg Roberts has accepted a 5-month contract job with the Census Bureau as a Media Specialist.
- Christine Goetz is the new Director of Marketing for Destination Development International.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Networking Events, Week of 01/11/10

There are a couple of good networking events coming up this week.

Wednesday, 1/13, PSAMA is putting on their monthly executive luncheon at The Washington Athletic club from 11:30 AM - 1:30 PM. This month, Brooks Sports presents: How David Competes Against Goliath and Wins, featuring guest speaker, Dave Larson. Cost is $38 for students and members, $50 for non-members if you pre-register for the event by 11 AM the day before (or an additional $5 will be charged at the door).
For more details, or to register click on the link below.

Thursday, 1/14, PRSA South Sound Group is putting on their monthly program: "Open Door Policy: Events as PR Tools." Panel Experts include: Phedra Redifer from Metro Parks Tacoma, and Andrea Mensink with Tacoma Regional Convention and Visitor Bureau. The program starts at 8 AM and doors open at 7:30 AM for networking in the first floor board room at Metro Parks Tacoma headquarters. Cost is $5 for PRSA members or $8 for non-members. Refreshments are included and no reservations are necessary. Check out the link below for more details.

There are also a couple of webcasts this week, too.
Tuesday, 1/12, at noon - "10 Trends that will Make or Break you Email ROI in 2010"

Thursday, 1/14, at noon - "Meeting of the Minds Webcast Series: 50+ Metrics Every Marketer Should Master (an Update)"
Click on the link below for further details and how to register.

There are many more upcoming events this month, so stay tuned for future updates!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Guest Speaker announcement - 1/15/10 meeting

Frustrated by the complexity of the modern job search process?
Confused by the sea of conflicting resume, career, and job search advice out there? Matt Youngquist, President of Career Horizons, will be facilitating a “Career Q&A” session and fielding any and all questions you might have on career-related topics.

A recognized local expert on job hunting and career management techniques, Matt has assisted over 6,000 Seattle professionals in navigating through challenging career hurdles and “jumping the curve” in terms of learning the most effective modern methods for finding employment. So bring along whatever burning questions you have in mind to the Jan 15th meeting, on any subject ranging from networking to job offer negotiation, and Matt will do his best to answer them!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Networking Event, Wednesday, January 6th!

Happy New Year, Everyone!

With the holidays behind us, networking events are starting to pick back up again. The first one of the year is brought to you by the Puget Sound American Marketing Association (PSAMA)and the SDMA "Scratch 2009. Cue up 2010."

Details are as follows:

Where: Garage Billiards in Seattle
When: Wednesday, January 6th, 2010, 5:30-8pm
To Register, Email: (or pay at the door--cash only)
Cost: Members: Free; Non-Members: $15; Students: $10

For more details, visit the website by clicking here.

I will make a post on Friday about upcoming events for next week, so stay tuned!

Monday, January 4, 2010

2010 - Year of the Job

OCA is declaring this the Year of the Job.
Welcome to 2010. And to start out on a positive note, we've got Job News to announce:

- Daniel Holland confirmed his new position as Marketing and Communications Director for UW's Center for Educational Leadership in the College of Education.

- Scott Bower starts a contract with Microsoft (thru Kelly Resources) this week.

- Wendy Noritake is the new Marketing Communications Director for the YMCA of Greater Seattle.

Congrats to all!