Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Random Day Job Has MOVED!

Check out the new Random Day Job website - http://www.randomdayjob.com/ - I will be posting from this website from now on.  Please follow me over to the new site!!  Thanks :)

Monday, May 9, 2011

What Promotional Companies Left a Good Impression?

The previous Random Day Job post below is about the website, Event Speak, where people in the marketing industry can find multiple resources.  One of the resources is a Marketing Forum where people share thoughts, opinions and questions about the industry.  A post called Beloved-Well Managed caught my attention.

It's really easy to head to a forum when you are upset or have a question.  But how many times do we actually take the time to compliment companies for a job well done?  I thought today, maybe we could exchange a few stories about some great interactions and jobs that left a good impression while working with promotional companies.  Here are a few of mine...

  • Cat 'n Mouse Promotions  - The staff at Cat 'n Mouse Promotions is awesome.  They hired me as Team Lead for a Palms Springs Bureau of Tourism job.  They clearly communicated, hired a stellar staff and paid within a WEEK!  Seriously, I was blown away with how fast they mailed the check.  Plus, they were very complimentary and thankful for a job well done.  It was truly a phenomenal experience and I would gladly work for them again.
  • Formula Street, Inc. - I have been impressed with this company from day one.  Before getting hired for the Heineken Team there was both a phone and in-person interview.  Plus, Formula Street, Inc takes pride that you truly know the product.  So, we have an in-person training to really educate the team on the product.  The promotions are well organized, professional and pay extremely well.  Plus, they mail a paycheck every two weeks. Can't beat that!!  
  • Devolutions Solutions - Honestly, I've never actually worked for Devolution Solutions, but the company made a lasting impression.  I added them to the Random Day Job Fantastic Promotional Company List and they mailed me an awesome swag package with a carton full of Jelly Belly's!  Obviously, I've been a big fan ever since.
  • Productions Plus - I really like Productions Plus because the jobs are high quality.   The work is challenging and you really need to know your stuff!  Plus, since you work hard to learn the product inside and out, they work hard to get you top industry rates.  I had the pleasure to work with Productions Plus on the Honda Civic Study Break and hope many jobs will develop in the future!
What about you?  What promotional companies have left a good impression in your experience?  I would love to hear about the companies that make sure promotions run smoothly or go the extra mile to really make the promotion a good one.  Comment below :)

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Thursday, May 5, 2011

Event Speak

In my own search to find a steady flow of Random Day Jobs, it's been crucial to spend time actually looking for jobs.  But let's face it, visiting every promotional website for new jobs can be extremely time consuming and who has time for that?!  Lucky for us there is a website that does the work for us.  It's called Event Speak.  I asked the owner of Event Speak, James Trivlis, to give us the skinny....


In 2005, EventSpeak.com was created to offer FREE resources to everyone in the Event Marketing Promo Industry. It started as a small forum and we quickly realized there was an even bigger need for a job board.  That takes us to where the EventSpeak.com site is today.

Here are a few of the Free services Event Speak offers:

-Free job board for any Company, Brand, Staffing agency or simply anyone that has a need they feel the members of the community can fill.

-Free Resume section where talent can create or upload a resume and photos.  Employers can search this database by city and state and hire you in just a few clicks.

-Free Marketing Directory with over 250 active company listings. We check each
link to make sure the company is still in business. This industry moves fast and
companies come and go.

- A Forum that has turned in to a major resource for the Marketing industry. Find out
what other promo people in the industry have to say about what they do! From
information on staffing and marketing companies to the best way to land your
next gig.

For a Free membership sign up at http://www.eventspeak.com/

We have recently learned that job seekers are not the only ones that use the EventSpeak.com site. About 10% of our users are the clients and brands looking for information on who they should hire for their next great marketing campaign. Once they find the right agency, they hire them and jobs are then created for all the seekers to find.

There are over 300 new jobs posted weekly by over 500 of the largest marketing agencies and staffing agencies in the USA and Canada. These jobs only have a life span of a few days so anyone in this industry knows you need to be fast at being the first one to the table.

Thanks for the blog post Greer and we over here at EventSpeak.com look forward to a long relationship with your site.

As you can see, Event Speak is a great resource for anyone looking to find a Random Day Job!  You can also follow Event Speak on Facebook and Twitter!!  Thanks for the info James :)

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Promotion Superstar: Nisha Rensel

Random Day Job is all about connecting with awesome people who choose a life of freelance instead of the corporate grind.  Many people have found great success as a freelancer and I find it inspiring to hear their stories.  Today, promotion superstar Nisha Rensel from Knoxville, TN is here to share her journey as an independent contractor in the world of promotions.

1.  How long have you been working promotions?  3.5 years

2.  How did you get started?  I was a fitness manager at a gym and a tour manager came through and asked if I would work an event in Bristol with a friend that weekend.  I said yes and it all started there.

3.  What do you love about promotional work?  I love having the excitement of a new challenge everyday.  I get to meet the coolest people from all over the country, and build close work relationships with the other promotional models in the area.  You can also make connections in companies you would never have access to in the outside world.  You get to meet many media figures and some celebrities.  You have free access and many times free reign of concerts and sporting events.

4.  Do you dislike anything about it?  I would say disorganization and bad attitudes are the only down side.  Sometimes you get staffed with a "model" who doesn't understand there is setup/breakdown, engaging consumers, etc.  They just have a bad attitude and want to just stand there and be pretty.  I only ever worked with one bad tour manager, and as a result of her arrogance I got injured.  But one injury in 3.5 years is great odds for what we do.

5.  You work a lot of promotions, how did you build such a strong database of clients? NETWORKING!  This industry is truly about making strong connections.  If you work with a brand ambassador that is really good, exchange info.  If you are working with someone from out of town, do the same.  The out of town people can send each other work from neighboring cities.  With the strong BAs you collect info on- let your staff know!  If you can help your staffer staff an event with the best team- they will think of you first and refer you to other companies.  Show up on time, ready to take on the new tasks, and in uniform.  Don't stand around and wait to be told what to do.  Show up introduce yourself to the manager or on site contact and immediately ask what you need to start doing.

Hit the gym- and not just to look good.  Lift weights.  Some of these setups can be intense and heavy - if you can jump in and actually help you will stand out from those on lookers.  If you are good and make the event run smoothly you will get the first call every time.  And its a small world - client XYZ might have worked with ABC Agency and ask if they know anyone in your city.  You want your name to stand out.

Once you have a strong group you work with you will more then likely be working many of the same events.  Carpool!  This means you can split parking 1-4 ways. Take turns on who drives to save gas too.  Is there a great paying job 2 or 3 hours away but with gas and hotel it doesn't make it worth it?  What about if that costs was split in half, or thirds?  The other people in this industry and your connections are what can make this a side job or a profitable career.  The less you pay out the more you keep in your pocket.  Also make sure to set some money aside and keep good records for tax time.  Ask your accountant everything you can write off and keep those receipts like your life depended on it.

6.  What advice would you give for someone wanting to get started as a promotional model? Remember there is a long list of people trying to start.  Have a winning attitude, smile, make connections, and follow through.  Good deeds always come back.  Someone who manages you today could be a staffer at an agency next year, so NEVER burn bridges.  Do not cancel your event for a higher paying event!!  I know that sounds silly, but staffers talk to each other.  If you cancel an event and they see you working for another company that day you just lost that first agency forever.  A black mark on your file will never go away.

Also get a card.  Tradeshows and big events often have people come up and say "Hey could you do this for me next time we are in town?"  Have your card ready, but do it off the clock on a break or after the event.  It is unprofessional to hand your card out on someone else's time.  Also have your rate in your head.  These people often have a budget.  So if you will travel with expenses paid let them know, if you have family in a certain city and can stay free, let them know that too.  Many of these companies staff Nationwide so if you have multiple cities you can work in like your home city you become more valuable.

And when you are starting out its no time to think you are a diva.  You should take anything that comes your way just to build a resume.  $10 an hour, yes.  Sampling paper towels, sure.  Once you have a strong resume then you start being a little more picky on rate and products.  However, on the same token if you are uncomfortable in bars or against tobacco do not do those events.  You can't promote well if you are not comfortable in your surroundings.

7.  Do you have any funny stories from working a promo?  Oh my goodness!  This list would be never ending.  Whenever you work with the public you are going to be laughing constantly.  I have had my shoe come off and get stuck in a pile of mud, been stuck in downpours in white promo shirt, had wheels come off rolling coolers, rental vehicles have mishaps, you name it its happened.  But again this is all part of what makes each day exciting and a constant hilarious day.  You just have to smile and remember those are the moments that make this job so much fun.  I wouldn't ever trade it to sit behind a desk bored all day.

8.  Anything else you want to add?  I have to add one major do not do in this industry.  "Never bite the hand that feeds you".  If someone sends you alot of work, do the same in return.  If another model sends you a job and you get it, if they did not make the cut do not accept it.  If you accept a job they sent you and for whatever reason they did not- you just made yourself their competition and they will NEVER send you another job again.  You have to think long term if you want to make this your full time job.  If you always just think of yourself, you will quickly find yourself low on the promotional totem pole in your city.

Wow, I told you Nisha was a promotion superstar!  Want to connect with Nisha?  You can find her on Facebook, Model  Mayhem, Knoxville Event Management, Linked In and Twitter

***Are you a Promotion Superstar?  I would love to hear your story!  Find me on Facebook or shoot me an email at greercarlson (at) gmail (dot) com***

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

AXE Excite: Even Angels Will Fall

Today's promotion was for Axe Excite, so tempting even angels will fall :)  Seriously, check out the commercial -

Anyway, Axe Excite is a mix of caramel, coconut and hazelnut, which blend into a delightful aroma.  Our job was to pass out almost 5000 samples to University of Arizona students.  A team of 8 AXE Angels conquered the campus and Axe Excite was well known by the end of the day!

Axe Excite is the newest fragrance from Axe and is available in body spray, deodorant stick, antiperspirant invisible solid, shower gel and also coming soon shampoo!  Check out AXE on Facebook to get information on cool events in your area.

Here are a few pictures from the event:

***Axe Excite was powered by Attack! Marketing.  Want to learn more about great promotional companies?  Click here and here***

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Monday, May 2, 2011

Maintenance is a MUST

Working Random Day Jobs usually means you are bouncing from one job to another, meeting new people with almost every gig.  A good first impression is crucial for getting hired again.  Plus, you are representing a product, so the client has certain expectations and standards to uphold.

When working as a brand ambassador, promotional model, actor, spokesperson, etc it is very important to maintain a clean and tidy appearance.  Clean hair and nails, appropriate makeup, crisp shirts and shorts or pants, clean shoes, etc. are all part of the job.

Maintenance is a MUST. 
  • If you color your hair, watch the roots!  Get a touch-up or colored again when your natural hair color begins to grow out. 
  • Clean your nails.  You don't need a manicure every week, but cleaning the dirt and filing nails can go a long way.
  • Clean teeth.  A little whitener can go a long way!  Slap on a Crest white strip from time to time.
  • Clean and Crisp shirt and shorts or pants.  Make sure your clothing is clean and pressed or steamed if needed.  Showing up with wrinkled clothing will not impress anyone!
  • Ladies, wear the appropriate amount of make-up.  Are you working an in-store demo?  A fresh, natural face will be perfect.  Or, are you working a beer promo for a bar?  A little more glam may be appropriate.  Think about your client and what you are selling when making up your face.
I am by NO MEANS saying you need to be obsessed with the way you look or dress, but it does play into representing a product.  All I'm saying is that you need to pay attention and try to look your best.  I'm thinking about maintenance today because I'm finally getting my haircut and colored this afternoon (much needed) and an eyebrow wax is also high on my list right now too!  It's all part of the biz.

And the best part?  Save the receipts for any of the above items you spend money on and use them as a tax write off!  You will be glad you did. 

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Friday, April 29, 2011

ACT II Popcorn & Holding My Tongue

To round out the week, I worked an in-store demo for Act II Popcorn.  In honor of Cinco de Mayo, my job was to sample ACT II flavors Salsa Valentina and Queso Jalapeno.  The promo was fine, nothing special.  Standard sampling of product, handing out coupons and being friendly with customers.

Unfortunately, there was a fellow sampler from another company that decided to carry a large chip on her shoulder!  You see, I was hired by Front Row to run the ACT II popcorn promotion.  This woman, lets call her "heavy shoulders," was an employee of Crossmark.  Heavy shoulders also happened to be the team lead.  I'm not exactly sure what happened, but it was nothing but one condescending remark after another from heavy shoulders.

Honestly, I knew this was a one day Random Day Job, so I refused to let heavy shoulders get me down.  I took one dig after the other, but continued to smile and say "sure thing" and "no problem."  It wasn't worth it to stoop to her level and have an attitude right back, I decided to hold my tongue instead.  I hope heavy shoulders finds some joy in her life, it's way too short to spend it tearing other people down!! 

**Looking for work with promotional comapanies??  Click here**

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