You’ve sent the email or filled out the application and now you’re patiently waiting for a response from someone, anyone at the event marketing agency. Will you get an email to schedule an interview? Unless you’re applying for a full time office gig, probably not. This is a quick moving business and first round interviews are often conducted via phone so be prepared for a call! Be sure your personality shines because there are often many candidates and you might only get a few minutes to show you’ve got what it takes to pass the first round interview.
In reality, the interview and interviewing process will depend on the company, the client and the project. Recently I was staffing for a 7-week long mobile tour and each candidate went through two rounds of interviews. The first was a brief phone screening interview with me and the second was a longer, in-depth face-to-face interview (whether in person or video) with the Project Manager. No one got through to the second round without passing my interview with flying colors. Even if I thought the candidate was great, if the Project Manager wasn’t wowed during the second interview, that candidate wasn’t getting the gig. Whatever the interview process is, you need to be prepared when the phone rings.
So, what do I mean when I say “be prepared”? It’s simple. First, know what position or positions you’re interviewing for. I know that in the promotional world there are times when you may have 4, 5, or even 10 different applications out at a time and that’s great. However, it is frustrating to leave someone a message stating I’m calling from Pro Motion in regards to the BA application they sent in and the candidate calls back with no clue what I’m talking about. If you’re applying to multiple promo jobs, keep track of them and if necessary do some research before you call back. That way, when you call back you can say “Thanks for calling me back I’m really excited about this Sun Drop sampling opportunity” instead of “What company is this? I don’t remember applying for this job”. Even if you have applied for a bunch of different jobs, be excited about the opportunity to work this gig! If you don’t sound like you’re interested in this job and the product, why would a company put you out in the field to be the face of that product?
Secondly, know your experience and how it relates to the position you’re interviewing for. If you’re applying for a brand ambassador job and are asked to tell about your experience, be detailed and specific. Do you need to go through every single BA job you’ve done in the past 5 years? No, but don’t just say you’ve done every kind of promotion for a wide range of brands. Tell me more! Give me details! Tell me the different brands and what the events entailed. Was it guerilla style? Was it sampling at scheduled events where the brand sponsored a tent? Who was the target demographic? If you had a goal, did you reach it? Talk about the great interactions you had or how excited people were to sample the product. This is the time where it’s ok to brag about how great you are as a brand ambassador. If you can’t convey yourself as a great BA, why should we hire you to be a BA for our client?
So, what’s my point? It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to get hired in event marketing, but it does take effort. A nice picture, great experience, and an awesome email/application is a good start, but the interview is where your application needs to come to life. If you say you’re an outgoing individual who can talk to anyone, but on the phone you’re quiet and reserved, you’ll have a hard time getting hired in this industry. If you’re outgoing and energetic, show me. If you love doing sampling programs, tell me why. A ten minute interview may be the only thing separating you from being an event marketing rock star and being an event marketing wannabe. If you follow the advice in my blogs, take the time to get creative in your application or email, and give your interview everything you’ve got, getting hired should be a piece of cake! Good luck!