Tuesday, 8 February 2011

How to get a job in advertising: Part 1

People often say to me, John -or rather, Mr. John- how did you get your first break into the ka-razee old world of advertising-brandcomms (with increasing emphasis on digital activity)?

Well, the answer I always tell them is really (very, very really) simple indeed.

Simple as a buttercup, in fact.

First off, as many of you will know from your checked shirts and Macbook Pros, advertising is really an extraordinarily conformist industry to work in. So the less dynamic, original, or singular you are, the greater your chances of finding a job in one of the bigger, blander agencies. After all, you want to work with like-minded people, right?

So. Do your homework. Find out what work other people are doing... and copy it. But don't be precious about it. There's really nothing in this game that hasn't been said or seen before by far more talented people than you, so the sooner you get that our of your silly, aspirational little brain the better. Remember, you are not creative. You are derivative. Just like all the other people who had exactly the same idea of going for exactly the same career as you.

(TIP: If you don't feel comfortable stealing other people's work, then your university lecturer and D&AD can help you steal other people's briefs instead).

Next, whilst you're busy imitating other people's work for your portfolio, you'll need to start networking - imitating the views and opinions of the people you'd ideally like to work with, and telling people/agencies EXACTLY the sort of things they want to hear. And thanks to social media, sharing other people's views and opinions, and passing them off as your own, is even easier than ever...

So why not take a few minutes to set up one of the many blogs praising (for example)the new Nike ad, or admonishing Go Compare? Meanwhile, you can ping, quote and retweet a whole rainbow of recieved opinions through the hollow prism of your Twitter account. You never know - say something flattering about an agency's work, and it might even get retweeted by the agency themselves! And let's face it - once you're in that feedback loop, you're as good as in there.

Aren't you?

(To be continued...)

1 comment:

andywhite said...

You're exactly right! And so am I! In fact, I'm going to copy this article word for word and use it as my next blog.

See? I've got it!