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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Thursday, April 28, 2011

Honda Civic Study Break

With every Random Day Job a new lesson can be learned.  Today, with the Honda Civic Study Break, I learned not to be afraid to step-up.  Originally, I was booked as a Brand Ambassador, but a few days before the job I was offered a higher position, Product Specialist.  At first, I was a bit intimidated because I was now responsible to learn several details and facts about the 2012 Honda Civic line up.  My job was to answer questions university students might have about the cars and I needed to know my stuff!

I spent a good two days studying to make sure I did not let down Productions Plus, the promotional company that hired me.  Turns out, it went great!  The Product Specialist position was lots of fun and I memorized more than enough information about the 2012 Honda Civics. 

So next time a company feels confident enough to ask you to work a higher position, go for it!  It might take a little bit more work, but completing the challenge will feel really good.

Here's a picture of me with the 2012 Honda Civic Coupe....

Want more pictures from the Honda Civic Study Break?  Check out Random Day Job on Facebook!  Or you can always follow me on Twitter!

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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Soft Cup Promotion

Beware: LADIES ONLY POST!!!  Hehe :)  Can't say I didn't warn you!

Today's Random Day Job was for Soft Cup.  Let's just say it's an alternative to a tampon.  Click on the Soft Cup link for more information :)  Anyway, the event was guerilla style on the University of Arizona's Campus.  The goal was to hit ladies in high traffic areas and hand out over 1200 samples! 

With six ladies on the Soft Cup team, we did our best to break up in groups and make sure the campus was covered.  And I must say, we did a pretty good job!  Toward the end, everyone knew exactly what we were giving away.  Here's a picture of the team:

I booked this promotion through In Field Promotional Staffing, LLC.  To learn more about working with promotional companies, click here!

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Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Blogger Inspiration


People all over the world make a living through unconventional avenues.  And, let's be honest, most of them do it WAY better than me!  I'm fascinated by entrepreneur's and people who think outside the corporate box to make a living.  These people are my inspiration and I hope to become more and more like them as I learn, grow and develop.  Today, I want to share some bloggers/ blog posts that have inspired me on my Random Day Job journey and hopefully, they will inspire you too!

the middle finger project - You Don't Need a job - You Need Guts
The Green Room Blog - On Survival Jobs and Surviving
Budgets Are Sexy - I Got Fired
Cordelia Calls It Quits - Never Feel Guilty for Following Your Dreams
Advanced Riskology - Stand on a Corner and Sing

Do you know any bloggers going against the corporate grain?  PLEASE comment below with links.  I'm always looking for new inspiration!!

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Monday, April 25, 2011

Promotional Job Photo Tips

Pictures are ALWAYS a good idea when working a promotion.  Many companies will ask for pictures mainly to ensure you worked the job, but also to show pictures to clients or post on facebook, the company website, etc.  But, not all pictures are good ones.  There are a few tips to remember when taking a photo during a promotion.

Picture Do's:
  • Consumer Interaction - Make sure the picture shows a brand ambassador interacting with the potential customer.  Smiles, sampling and handing out swag are all great photo opportunities.
  • Consumers in Target Demographic - Make sure the consumer in the picture is the target audience.  The company wants to know you are focusing time and effort on the right people.
  • Product Facing Camera - Remember the product!  Always have the product, sample or any item related to the promotion facing camera.  The picture has no value without the product in clear view.
Last Friday, I FINALLY worked a promotion for Dos Equis!  I mentioned Heineken as an upcoming repeat client in a previous post, but I missed 3 weeks of jobs due to catching a nasty desert virus called Valley Fever.  Anyway, now that I'm feeling better, I'm back on the Heineken roster and below is an example of a good promotional picture...

First of all, I'm smiling and interacting with a happy consumer by handing him a Dos Equis.  The customer is within the target audience (people between the ages of 21-35) and the Dos Equis label is clearly facing the camera.  Extra points for the table flag and an arm full of promotional swag such as the beads and drums.  The client should be happy with this picture!

Picture Do Not's:

  • Posing with a Competitive Brand - NEVER let a competing brand make it into a photo.  You are hired to promote one brand and one brand only! So make sure all brand labels are visible!
  • Taking Photos with No Flash - Dark pictures make it hard to see and often are not usable.
  • Taking Pictures with Non Target Audience - There is no point in promoting a product to someone who cannot, will not or should not be using it.  Also, make sure the consumer is enjoying the product!
  • Taking Pictures of People Making Rude or Obscene Gestures - Use discretion.  No middle fingers, bunny ears, etc.
Here is another picture from Friday's job.  Can you identify any problems?

Problem Number One?  I have two draft beers in my hand.  There is NO WAY to know the beer is Dos Equis.  It could be anything.  Also, the table flag is turned backwards and the guys don't really look very excited to be getting a free beer!  This is not a great photo.  If I didn't know better, I would assume I was the waitress, not a Dos Equis Brand Ambassador!!

Do you take pictures on your promotions?  What seems to work and not work for you?

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Thursday, April 21, 2011

6 Casting Websites Every Actor Should Know

In today's world, it's every actor's responsibility to take control of their career.  Definitely find yourself a quality talent agent, but don't just sit back and hope work finds you!  There are several resources including websites and social media that can kick start or continue building your career.  I've mentioned a few acting websites in the past here and here.

Checking the websites daily is a great start, but you should also consider following the casting websites through social media as well.  I'm sort of on a social media kick this week and want to make sure actors are not missing any opportunities!

Here are the 6 Casting Websites every actor should know (and follow through social networks)!!

1. Actors Access - Follow on Facebook and Twitter
2. Backstage - Follow on Facebook and Twitter 
3. Now Casting - Follow on Facebook and Twitter
4. 800 Casting - Follow on Facebook
5. Reality Wanted - Follow on Facebook and Twitter
6. Mandy - Follow on Facebook and Twitter

Let me know if I am missing any LEGIT casting websites, but this will give actors a great start!

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Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Dress Code Shoot - New Tees

One of my repeat clients  is a funky music inspired clothing store here in Tucson called Dress Code.  Yesterday, was the shoot for some sweet new tees, here are a few...





20 Promotional Companies to Follow with Social Media

10ch's photostream
If you are a Promotional Model or Brand Ambassador (or looking to become one), here is a list of the 20 Best Promotional Companies you should be following on BOTH Facebook and Twitter.  It's a great way to stay connected and learn about upcoming jobs in your area!  Click on the links to follow...

1. Attack! Marketing & Promotions - Facebook and Twitter
2. Formula Street, Inc. - Facebook and Twitter
3. Redline Staffing - Facebook and Twitter
4. EventPro Strategies - Facebook and Twitter
5. Cat 'n Mouse Promotions - Facebook and Twitter
6. In Field Promo - Facebook and Twitter
7. 360 Events & Promotions - Facebook and Twitter
8. Triple Point - Facebook and Twitter 
9. Productions Plus - Facebook and Twitter
10. Method Models - Facebook and Twitter
11. CMT Agency - Facebook and Twitter
12. Forte Promotions Group - Facebook and Twitter
13. Fusion Event Staffing - Facebook and Twitter
14. Encore Nationwide - Facebook and Twitter
15. On the Rocks Models - Facebook and Twitter
16. Quickstrike Field Marketing - Facebook and Twitter
17. Adelante Live - Facebook and Twitter
18. Sphynx Marketing & Promotions - Facebook and Twitter
19. 8 Days a Week Staffing & Promotions - Facebook and Twitter
20. GT Events - Facebook and Twitter

***To find our more about working for promotional companies, click here***

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Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Expanding Your Job Opportunities

The main idea behind Random Day Job is to create a steady income from random freelance jobs.  All of the jobs together create a portfolio of work that highlights your career capabilities.  Like I've said before, focus on jobs you enjoy and naturally have a skill set already in place.  In the beginning, devote time to the area of work the comes the easiest, this is a great way to gain confidence and work jobs quickly. 

After a while, it may be time to challenge your skill set and look for ways to grow.  There are probably skills you would like to develop and if you did, it could open new income opportunities.  As a freelancer, it's smart to slightly diversify your hiring potential.  First of all, most freelancers like a change from time to time, but also it's easier to make $10,000/year from 5 different skills sets than $50,000/year from one. 

For example, my goal is to make money in each of the following areas -

1. Promotional Model/Brand Ambassador/Tradeshow Spokesmodel
2. On Camera Work - Commercials, Corporate Videos and Hosting Gigs
3. Voiceover Talent
4. Writing
5. and maybe one day - My Blog!!

So far this year, the majority of my work has been from promotional modeling opportunities.  Usually, my on camera work takes the lead, but I currently live in Tucson.  The on camera market here is not strong and that's a reality I must face.  I've also had the opportunity to work a little in the voiceover area, though I need to keep searching and submitting myself for new voiceover opportunities.  For now, the brand ambassador/promotional modeling area is really strong, so it's time to start adding another area to grow my earning potential.

Personally, writing is an area I would like to develop.  Obviously, I write this blog, but I believe with some effort, I could also be writing articles or blog posts for other people/companies and create an additional source of income.  My biggest hurdle is having the confidence that I can succeed in this area.  With little professional writing experience (does my college newspaper count?!), it can be intimidating to step out, submit myself and hope editors take me seriously.

It's very possible I will fail at this attempt to add writing to my income potential, but something inside tells me I must try even if I fail. 

What about you?  Is there an area you would like to grow and develop into an income opportunity, but a lack of real experience is holding you back?  I would love to hear about your adventure of growth and what you learned in the process!

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Monday, April 18, 2011

More Promotional Companies

Promotional work makes for excellent Random Day Jobs and I came across a website that's new to me - Marketing Rock Star.  The site lists promotional jobs by state, so it's a great way to know what's going on in your area.

Also, it's a great place to find new promotional companies and become part of their internal database (which means you are usually the first to know about jobs in your area).  Here are three goods promo companies I stumbled upon....

Lucky 415
Two Dots Productions

I've added them to my master list of promotional companies here :)

Double Check Paycheck

For an independent contractor, it's extremely important to keep accurate payment records.  Each job has it's own rate, hours and payment process, so it can be very confusing if you are not organized.  In a previous post, I even mention practicing the virtue of patience in payment .  

Personally, I find it helpful to record the date of the job, client and the exact amount I expect to receive when my check arrives.  When the check comes, I can double check the amount and mark the invoice as paid in my records.  This has been a great exercise and kept me from second guessing any payment amounts.  Last week, I was reminded of why this exercise is so important. 

In February, I worked for Jack Daniels at the Tucson Rodeo.  I was a last minute booking because another girl backed out.  There were four girls on the job and each girl had slightly different hours.  My shift was the longest and I made sure to keep accurate records of my days, hours and rate.  On the last day, one of the girls was a no show (BIG no no!). 

When my check finally arrived, I double checked my records and realized it was short by $144!!  I immediately gave the agency a call to make them aware of the mistake.  After some digging, we discovered that I was shorted the exact amount the other model should have been shorted for not showing up the last day.  So, I was not paid for an entire day of work.

Thankfully, the agency apologized for the mistake and promised to cut me a check for the remaining amount.  But, the only reason the agency realized the mistake was because I brought it to their attention.  Without an organized system to record and double check my payment amounts, I would not have realized my check was incorrect.  This was a great reminder that taking a few minutes to keep accurate records is well worth the time and effort!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Sick. Sick. Sick.

I'm still alive....promise!  My blogging came to a screeching halt because I came down with Valley Fever!!  It's a horrible desert virus that can knock you out for weeks.  Thankfully, my sweet mom and mother-in-law have taken the last two weeks to nurse me back to health!!  Finally, I'm feeling like a human again.

Unfortunately, I was forced to cancel several jobs over the past two weeks :(  I was scheduled to work for Dresscode, Adult Swim, Heineken, Caress Body Wash and Direct TV.  It was disappointing to back out of the projects, but there was NO WAY I could work.

I'll be back blogging on Monday!!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Follow Casting Directors with Social Media

In order to continue booking Random Day Jobs, I must always be on my toes.  Brainstorming and cultivating new ways to create business is all part of the game.  Social media outlets like Facebook and Twitter have been a complete game changer for all businesses and you certainly do not want to miss out!

As I've mentioned before, my experience includes a great deal of on camera work including commercials, corporate videos and hosting gigs.  Most jobs, I have found through a trusted agency, but I have also found many on my own through the years as well.

When I first arrived in Tucson, I did my best to find a local agent.  Only to arrive at several dead ends as I mentioned here in another post.  There are definitely legit agencies in Phoenix, but I wasn't excited about the 2 hour drive on a regular basis.  A good relationship with an agency takes time to grow and in the beginning your answer should be YES to almost everything!  My time here in Tucson is coming a close with ONLY 9 weeks remaining, so a Phoenix agent just isn't the right answer for me.

Regardless, I did not want to give up hope.  So, I used social media outlets to explore casting directors in the AZ area.  Turns out, the best local casting director, Good Faith Casting located in Phoenix, actually posts audition notices on Facebook and Twitter!  You can also subscribe to emails on her website for additional information.  Best part?  You don't need an agent.

Obviously, read the sides very carefully to make sure you fit the profile and follow the submission directions.  Good Faith Casting gives you all the information you need to submit yourself - casting profile, audition and shoot date, plus the rate.  Casting directors are really busy and it's annoying to shift through ridiculous submissions.  So, DO NOT submit yourself if you don't fit the profile, are unable to make the audition or shoot date.  It's a quick way for a casting director to label you as unprofessional and not consider you in the future.
I think finding casting notices through social media is a fantastic concept for casting directors and actors.  It allows actors to submit themselves for castings and personally, I do not worry about breaking an agency relationship since I will be moving soon. 

This makes me think....what other agencies and casting directors are using social media to announce casting calls?  It would be a great benefit to search both Facebook and Twitter to find out who is using social media for castings in your area.  If you find some, let me know and I'll share the love :)

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Friday, April 1, 2011

2011 Heineken USA Tour

 Earlier this week, I mentioned another repeat client on the horizon.  Well, starting this week, I'm officially apart of the 2011 Heineken USA Tour!  Events are scheduled almost every Thursday, Friday and Saturday through the end of the year.  Formula Street is the marketing company behind the tour.  If you haven't already, sign up with them online.  I'm really impressed so far!

There is a large team of girls, so I will not be working every event, but I'm sure I'll be working many.  I was honored to have the opportunity to participate as a Team Lead, but with so many weekends in the mix and my personal need to spend time with my hubby, I decided remaining a Brand Ambassador is the right position for me on the tour.

Anyway, the Heineken beer portfolio includes Heineken, Heineken Light, Newcastle, Dos Equis, Amstel Light, Tecate and Tecate Light as well as a few others.  Heineken has been brewed since 1863 and was the FIRST imported beer to reach America's shores in the 1880's.

To start the year, the Heineken USA Tucson team will focus on Tecate and Dos Equis.

Tecate was born in 1944 in the small town of Tecate, Mexico.  In 1954, Cerveceria Cuauhtemoc acquired the beer and launched the brand on a national scale.  Tecate is also the official beer of boxing!  Mainly our Hispanic team members will focus on this account, but some of the non-Spanish speaking ladies might be able to work a shift or two.  The Tecate promotion will last until May 7th, when the Manny Pacquaio vs. Sugar Shane Mosley boxing match occurs! 

Dos Equis Lager and Dos Equis Ambar were created in 1897 by a German brewer who blended his brewing style with Mexican tradition in order to celebrate the upcoming 20th century.  The Lager hit American soil in 1983 and today is the #1  Mexican beer sold on draught.  The Dos Equis Lager taste is crisp, golden and refreshing!  The Ambar hit American soil in 1973 and is considered the Lager's dark, passionate, moody cousin!  Dos Equis Ambar is a full-bodied, slightly spicy beer with a caramel taste that is well structured, which creates a long finish.

The Dos Equis Tour will be in full force until Cinco de Mayo!  But don't worry, we'll be showing patrons "The Lost Art of Cinco", so you can enjoy Cinco De Mayo in an interesting way.  Just ask the Most Interesting Man :)

In May, the team will focus on some of the other Heineken Brands.  The Heineken Tour is ALL OVER the US, so look for a local team in your area.  Check back for pictures and more fun from the Heineken USA 2011 Tour!

***Interested in working with promotional companies?  Click Here***