Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Don't Believe Everything You Hear About the Job Market

There Are Over Eight Million Vacancies Available Each Month
The job hunt has changed dramatically, but it really hasn’t changed much at all.  Are you confused?  This is because of two words:  essence and behavior.  On the surface, the behavior has changed.  The way we job hunt has been influenced by technology, the internet, computers, smartphones, and other digital changes made to the environment. Today, we will sit with our laptop searching for a job, instead of a newspaper and a pen. However, in essence, job hunting is the same.  In essence, the question asked is “Do you like me?”

Don’t Believe Everything You Hear
“Good-paying jobs are still scarce.  I cannot afford to be picky.  There are very few vacancies out there.”  This is completely false!  The media chooses to focus on the negative.  When the unemployment rate is discussed they are focusing on only one side of the story.  The media chooses to report on the jobs added, not the net number of jobs available!  To find this information visit www.bls.gov/cps and then compare it to the data available at www.bls.gov/jlt By comparing the Current Population Survey and the Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey, we can get a more accurate estimate of jobs available.  

Things to Remember:

  • Job-hunting is an art
  • Job-hunting is mysterious
  • There is no “right way” or “wrong way” to hunt for a job
  • Job-hunting is a full-time job

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Pay the Facebook Mafia and Getting Traffic

"This extortion is probably worth the money, as a learning experience..."

Basic Social Promotion
This semester is all about learning and understanding analytics.  We have setup a blog, linked our analytics account to this blog, and we’re currently waiting on some click data to analyze.  Do you hear the crickets too?  We need someone to look at our blog!  The easiest way to get some traffic would be to share your blog link on social media.  I’m going to suggest Facebook.  You can beg your friends and family to click on your blog link to give you some click data to look at.  I would suggest sharing a specific blog post, not the actual blog link.  

Here’s an example:

A few tips:
  • Include a picture:  “Photo posts on Facebook generate 55% more Likes than the average post” -HubSpot This link includes 500+ free stock images you can use.
  • Post often:  The more often you post, the more likely you are to get someone to click. HubSpot also has a blog post about The Benefits of Blogging, including some information about Blogging ROI.

You should share your link on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and any other social media site you use.  Someone is bound to click on your link, and then we will have some data to look at in Google Analytics.  Our professor wrote in his book that you could post it to Facebook, and then choose to “promote” it.  This costs a few bucks, but it will show in your friend’s news feed as a sponsored post.  The downside, he wrote, is that he gets “an icky feeling” and it feels like a “mafia shakedown,” but the upside is that it’s effective and fairly easy to do. Both professional and personal advertising has a cost.

In my next blog post, I will be discussing how to review performance from our few shares to social sites. In the meantime, help my classmates gain some click data to analyze by checking out their blogs :-)


The Importance of Digital Analytics

This week we discussed how to setup a Google Analytics account and how to link our blog to this account.  This is a very simple task and can be completed quite fast.  Also, it only needs to be done once!  This week, I also began to work my way through Google's Analytics Academy. This is a series of videos introducing users how to use Google Analytics.  There are 22 videos within 6 units, each video is between 3 and 10 minutes.  The goal at the end of this semester is to pass the Digital Analytics Fundamentals exam and receive the certification.  Google believes analytics should be a central part of a business.  It's important to understand if your efforts are working and how well an organization is performing.  Google Analytics makes this possible and much simpler to do.  

"The Google Analytics Academy provides a foundation for marketers and analysts seeking to understand the core principles of digital analytics and to improve business performance through better digital measurement."

The current online environment is currently driving change for business.  Analytics is becoming more useful and needed to businesses.  These are a few of major trends and how they're affecting businesses:  
The Internet makes information and media available at the click of a button
Mobile connects nearly everyone 24/7
Cloud computing provides cheap, practically infinite computing power

The internet and mobile are contributing to a changing consumer journey.  Consumers are empowered with information.  They are able to go online and find a forum and discuss a product.  They can read reviews, recommendations from experts, product reviews, and obtain information from other various sources online.  The information they are seeking is instantly available.  

Cloud computing has empowered organizations.  Cloud computing allows organizations to analyze more data than before.  Organizations can now collect data and analyze it to make effective decisions.  They are also able to make better decisions based on the data and improve their results. 

So, how are these trends affecting YOUR business?

This has created new opportunities for measurement, also has complicated how we measure the customer's journey.  These changes have made it for practitioners of digital analytics. how their business infrastructure, the tools., processes , people, support this process.  testing analyzing and improving.  

These changes have created new opportunities for measurement.  This is great, because we can now learn more about the customers.  However, it has also complicated how we measure the customer's journey.  Consumers have complete control.  The purchase funnel as we once knew it is gone!  Buyers can jump in at any stage (awareness, acquisition, engagement, conversion, retention.)  Today, we will have more accurate information about our customers, but we will have to work a little harder to find them and please them.  With the Analytics tools available to use we will be able to deliver satisfaction to the customers.  

Thursday, September 17, 2015

"There's a new resume in town, and it's called Google."

Google Is Your New Resume
There are 4 important things you MUST do about your Google resume

Previously, the only way an organization could obtain information about a candidate was through your paper resume.  The candidate could edit and remove whatever information they didn't want their future employer to see.  Today, an organization can Google your name and obtain a ridiculous amount of information about you.  A large number of employers (91%) are using Google to visit job hunter's social media pages.  These employers (69%) are using Google to weed out unwanted candidates based on what they find.  

Things that can get you rejected:
  • Bad grammar
  • Gross misspellings on Facebook or LinkedIn
  • Anything indicating you lied on your resume
  • Badmouthing of previous employers
  • Any signs of racism, prejudice, or screwy opinions
  • Anything indicating alcohol or drug abuse
  • Inappropriate content
The first step is to Edit your Google resume.  Google your name and fix what you find.  If your embarrassing Myspace page from high school is still up and running, delete it!  Or at the very least, disable it.  After you have Googled yourself, go over everything Google has pulled up and make adjustments.  Remember to check ALL your social sites such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and YouTube.  Pretend to be a private detective and remove all the embarrassing items and things from your past you may regret. 

The second step is to Fill In.  Fill out your LinkedIn profile completely and leave no blanks. Remember to keep your LinkedIn up-to-date as well.  Having an outdated profile looks very unprofessional.  (Note:  WCIYP mentions Twitter and Plaxo as being important profiles to fill out also.  If your Twitter page isn't very professional or related to your field of work, skip it.  I wasn't sure what Plaxo was, but I googled and found this page.)

The third important step is to Expand your internet presence.  There are several ways to do this by using forums, blogs, twitter, videos, etc.  LinkedIn has many professional groups to join.  If you intend on doing this, participate.  If you do not, you may be removed from the group.  The goal with forums is to be seen as a specialist in your field.  Employers will see that you are knowledgeable and an expert in your field.  

Blogs are another great way to expand your internet presence.  If you already have a blog, but the topic isn't related to your field I suggest starting a new one.  I wrote an article about blogging here.  The article covers what blogging is, why it's so important, and a few SEO best practices for blogging.  

Twitter is important because employers will search through hashtags.  If you know what they're looking for they may be able to find you if you're speaking the same language.  If they're looking for specific hashtags that you have used on Twitter, they can find you.  Some savvy employers may use Google to search through Twitter hashtags, others may use Twitter itself to do so.  

Hashtags Come to Google Search Results  This article discusses searching through hashtags within the Google Search Results page.  

Videos are another way to expand your presence.  Many employers want to see you, not just read you.  Recording a video of yourself and posting it to YouTube is a great way for employers to see you.  The video should be related to your field of work, otherwise skip it.  

Here is a great example of using video.  This is a video of an optometrist teaching how to insert scleral lenses.  

The final thing to do to your Google resume is to Add your old type resume somewhere on the internet where Google will find it.  LinkedIn is a great place to add your resume.  You can also send it to an interested employer. 

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Web Analytics Tools You Should Know About and the Big Debate: Google Vs. Omniture

Web Analytics tools are important!  Often, the goal of digital marketing is to sell something, or to get people to sign up for something.  If you want to monitor your efforts, you NEED to understand analytics or at least understand how to use a few analytical tools available to you.

Google Analytics: This is a FREE tool!  Sometimes Google Analytics out performs the paid tools, and in other cases the paid tools beat Google Analytics.  If you are a smaller business with a small website and simpler transactions, but you need high-level analytics, Google Analytics is a great option.

Omniture (Adobe Analytics):  Omniture is considered the top "enterprise" tool.  Omniture has lots of power, sophistication, and customization.  If you have a larger website and do hundreds of transactions, then Omniture is a better option.  Again, there are things Omniture can't do that Google can, so often times using more than one tool can be beneficial.  

Five Rivers Interactive Media has done a great job comparing the two here. 

Google Analytics Vs Omniture a comparison
Open Source Analytics:  If you have concerns about Google having your data, then you may opt for Open Source Analytics.  With this option, you will have the opportunity to keep your own data without having to share it with Google.  Both Piwik and Open Source Analytics provide comparisons to Google Analytics as well.  Again, depending on your needs choose as necessary.  

http://piwik.org/ and http://www.openwebanalytics.com/ are two options for Open Source Analytics tools.  

Social Analytics:  Social media sites such as Facebook, YouTube, etc. allow you to get information about how many likes, viewers, and other various analytic data for free.  They are built into the applications and are available to you always.  Adobe's analytics tool has tried to become an "all-in-one" place for this type of data collection.  

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

"Employers and Job-Hunters Speak Two Entirely Different Languages"

"Assume that the employer's world is like a foreign country; you must learn their language, and their customs, before you visit."

Employers and job-hunters are not speaking the same language (not literally).  They have different understandings of the same words.  For example, an individual may not be hired by an organization because he lacked "skills" but what the organization meant is that he lacked "experience."

The job market is a hiring game to you, but an elimination game to the employer.
An average employer receives between 118 and 250 resumes and applications, but have the intention of only interviewing about 5 candidates.

You want the employer to be taking initiative toward finding you.
If you have this mentality, you are wrong.  You should be working hard toward finding them. The employer prefers when you take the initiative.

You want your past performance to be all that gets weighed.
There is more to consider than just your past performance (summarized on your written resume) when it comes to hiring someone.  They also consider your behavior from their first interaction with you.  Many other factors come into play here.

You want the employer to acknowledge that they have received your resume. 
Typically, only 45% of employers do this.

You want the employer to hunt for you the same way you are hunting for them.  
There are two words to consider here:  Risk and Time.  Risk is the main value The employer wants to hire with the least amount of risk, and the job hunter wants to spend the least amount of time job-hunting.  The way job-hunters and employers look for one another are the exact opposite!  Employers want the least risk, because it will save them the most money.  An estimated $55,000 can be lost on a bad hire, so the employer is always being cautious.

However, do not fear.  View these as challenges to overcome.  The way we used to search for jobs no longer works, but we have the opportunity to adapt to the new job-hunting ways. "In today's world he or she who gets hired is not necessarily the one who can do that job best; but, the one who knows most about how to get hired."  —Richard Lathrop

This Fall, I will be reading through one of the All-TIME 100 Best Nonfiction Books entitled What Color Is Your Parachute? 2016 Edition and posting as I work my way through chapter by chapter.  I will be blogging about what I found most interesting and most helpful. If you would like to be updated when I post, enter your email into the side bar where it says "Follow by Email."