Online is a lot about personal branding. Bloggers are essentially small brands and they make money like small brands, by co-marketing with bigger ones. So promoting oneself is actually business as usual - you do it via your social media accounts, through the blog, through images you upload.
But recently, one marketing manager chose to promote herself with the classical means of offline advertising: she needed a job and so she booked a huge mesh prism in downtown Bucharest which sent you to a website. They both said the same thing: "17 years of experience, 4 multinational companies, 9 brands introduced: Marketing Director Seeking Employment".
The initiative created a storm online with people speculating that it was: a) a hoax b) real c) a great guerilla campaign by a new jobbing service.Everyone was mesmerized by this, either because it was so daring and so crazy, or because it was so desperate and crazy. Eventually, pretty much everyone got convinced it was real (the person exists, people have worked with her).
But the question remains: WOULD YOU HIRE CARMEN?
There is always two sides to advertising and we never seem to understand which is the one that matters most, or that makes the difference. We have awareness, everyone is talking about Carmen and then we have affinity, the right people are saying the right thing about Carmen. Which is more important?
Awareness was achieved in this case: she got people talking. A lot. Mostly that she must be desperate, that the crisis was hitting deep, that she was taking huge chances, that she was paid to do it. Everyone knows Carmen.
But did she get affinity? Did her audience - CEOs in search of a marketing manager - understand that she was proactive [she did not sit on her ass and expect to be head hunted or simply send out CVs], and using the tools of her trade [she is a marketing manager, so she used advertising to market herself]?
This is where the connection breaks because if no one hires Carmen then she will have made the point that awareness/buzz is not enough and that her message somehow was not sent using the correct means or to the right people. Which I tend to think is the case. But what if, seriously, what if someone does hire Carmen? What then?
Then, we have two ways of looking at it: a) mere awareness is still enough of an incentive to buy or b) innovation will make a difference. Once. At least for Carmen :D
communication is essential to business making and it involves more than the ability to name your product, write a tag line or a press release. It's an intricate, rational and scalable effort and, let's face it, not anyone can do it.