Tags: CV writing, personal branding, career tips...

Finding a job can be hard. In this day and age with more and more people coming through university with their shiny degrees self motivation, drive and passion to succeed how can you make yourself stand out?


On average there are at least 40 applications for every job vacancy available in the UK, so cutting through the noise can be difficult. Here at Search we have rounded up our 6 favourite recruitment campaigns that have seen some people go to extraordinary lengths to land their dream jobs.


6. Sandwich Boards


This tried and tested method has proved to be a popular tactic for desperate job seekers. Over the years there have been a number of people who attempted to grab the attention of potential employers by strapping on a sandwich board embroidered with a catchy slogan and taking to the streets. However silly this might sound there have been a number of people who have been highly successful. Not only have the caught the eye of local employers but some of them have even generated media interest from national press, which only further enhanced their attempts.  David Rowe, Jason Fruen and James Elgati are only a few of those who have enjoyed success from this strategy.


David adjourned his sandwich board as a history student straight out of uni at a time when job vacancies were extremely rare.  David’s unique offering was to work for one month for free, at which point the company had the option to hire or fire him. Within a few hours this tactic proved successful as he was offered not only an interview but also a job with a recruitment firm.


Jason Fruen stands out, as unlike others who tend to focus on this strategy, Jason is in his 40’s and not straight out of uni. After being made redundant and with a family to support and mortgage to pay Jason took to drastic measures. After just one day he was offered a local, temporary position, which has since led to full time employment with an alternative company.


James Elgati was in a similar position to David Rowe, straight out of uni and despite sending numerous CVs was finding it difficult to get even an interview. As well as generating substantial media attention, James was also offered a number of interviews, including one with a leading New York bank which led to a summer internship. This has led to a so far successful career for James who, after completing the internship, earned himself a place on the prestigious RBS graduate scheme. 



5. Billboards


Another popular, albeit more expensive, strategy is to hedge your bets on renting a billboard to advertise your job seeking needs. This was utilised by Felim Mac An Iomaire in Ireland who didn’t want to have to emigrate in search for work. At the time Ireland was an experiencing huge job loss with many young people looking to the UK, Australia and America for job opportunities. However Felim wanted to remain in his home city of Dublin so opted for the bold option of renting a billboard. This proved to be hugely successful as he was soon inundated with offers for interviews. He has since joined popular Irish bookmaker Paddy Power.




4. Google Adwords


It is well documented that the use of social media is part of the new norm when seeking jobs. However, as this has grown in popularity, so therefore has the competition and it is yet again difficult to stand out.


This is where Alec Brownstein took real initiative and made use of Google’s Adwords. After admitting how often he Googled himself, the young copywriter from New York decided to apply this tactic to creative directors that he aspired to work for.


He took out the ad space for each of the directors with a simple message “Hey [creative directors name] Googling yourself is a lot of fun. Hiring me is fun, too” with a link to his personal website. Of the five directors Alec targeted four gave him an interview and two offered him jobs. The total cost of his campaign was $6 (approx. £4). 





3. Fitness Trackers


One hopeful candidate in San Francisco has gone the extra mile, or eight to be exact, by using the tracking system in his favourite running app. The app designed by Strava, the company in which he was applying to, allows users to track their run and displays the route taken on a map. Dan Miller therefore used this to his advantage and embarked on the eight mile run to spell out ‘HIRE ME”.


At the time of writing this is no information as to whether this tactic was successful.


2. Train Stations


In a similar experiment to the sandwich boards mentioned earlier Alfred Ajani last year took to standing outside one of the busiest tube stops in London, armed with a sign advertising his degree and a stack of CVs.


After a few conversations and people taking a copy of his CV he was offered an interview, and later a job, at a local recruitment agency. He has since been promoted to the marketing and PR manager and has turned his successful tactic on its head by returning to the same spot, only this time in an attempt to find candidates.




1. Viral Campaigns


Possibly the most famous of all these campaigns was the viral campaign “Employ Adam”. This was run by Adam Pacitti, a media student who, like most others struggled to find a job in his field after leaving uni. 


The campaign was extremely successful and seen Adam utilise a number of digital and traditional marketing tactics to take his campaign viral. It originated around a simple billboard with the message: “I spent my last £500 on this billboard. Please give me a job” and a link to his website. From here Adam incorporated other digital marketing tactics including creating a YouTube video and setting up social media platforms.




I It didn’t take long before Adam caught the eye of the media and his strategy went viral. His plight was covered by all the national daily newspapers, radio and television shows from around the world. This successfully led to Adam being employed with a media company in London. To view his original website check out Employ Adam.



At Search we don’t believe you have to go to these lengths to find the next step in your career, so we have made it easy for you to check out our latest job vacancies at Search Consultancy.