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5 Job Do's & Don'ts for Applying at a Digital Agency

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Over the years I've gotten a few job resumes and applications and reading each one I'm always evaluating them word by word. What you say and what you don't say says a lot about the kind of worker you'd be and what you'd bring to the company. Remember, all companies want to know how you can make their job easier and make them money. Keep that in mind when composing opening emails to an ad agency or any type of company. 

1. Don't Use "Sir or Madam" (If at all possible)

I can't stress this enough - this is the most impersonal way to start off a conversation. I'd almost rather "Hey Bro" than "Sir or Madam" or "Who it may concern". Most ad agencies in lafayette have some sort of "about" or "team members" section that you can check out to see the names of people you may want to work with. You can almost always find someone's name to use. In the case of our digital agency it may not be apparent who handles job applications but even picking a name you can't go wrong. Using a generic name just tells me our company is one in a pile of companies you've sent mass emails to with no regards to who we are.

2. Be Prompt in Your Responses

I realize you're out there searching for gigs and may even have another job, but being prompt says a lot about the work you would do for us. Taking a day or so to reply back to any questions we may have asked makes me think that's how you'd be on the job.

3. Have An Easy Way to View Your Work & Bio

For the most part we judge candidates by their work. It's understandable if you're a student and don't have a huge portfolio but you should have something if you're already trying for jobs. There's many free options to create portfolios - Wix, Squarespace, Deviant Art & Behance are just a few that come to mind. You should defintely have someplace online where I can go and learn a little bit more about you and who you are. You should have a bio and it should give a little insight into how you work, how it is to work with you and your work ethic. For the most part stay away from "quirky" stuff like "sushi eating soccer player with a rock star attitude" - it's more annoying than anything. That of course is my personal opinion, maybe another "quirky" shop will like your imaginative bio. I should also be able to view your work with relative ease and if you have a bio picture make sure you're smiling and it looks semi professional. Please no bathroom selfies with the toilet seat up.

4. Try To Have Relevant Work

If you're still in school you may not have a crazy amount of practical graphic design or web design experience - but try to fill your portfolio with relevant personal projects. One person applied to be a graphic designer but all his work was of weird paintings and illustrations of warrior dogs and monsters. We don't do too many jobs with bad warrior dog illustrations. I need to picture the kind of work you would do for us and the best way is through your work. When I was starting out I would enter design contests and work on redesigning mail pieces I would get in the mail. Craigslist isn't what it used to be but I did a couple of cheap jobs off it just to build a portfolio

5. Be Careful What You Say on Social

Most HR people worth their salt will do a social check on you. If you have a generic name you may be safe, but if your name is even remotely unique everything you've done on the internet is open for the world to see. If you get too poltical, talk about divisive topics or anything else crazy it will show up and can affect your job opportunities anywhere you apply. If you're a young whipper snapper that may be fine, but the closer you get to being in the job world the more you should tone back what you say online. The last thing any company needs in this day and age is for some employee to have some crazy situation go viral.

Have a question? I'd be be glad to answer. Want to send your resume? Send it over.


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