A few years ago, when I left the Coventry University School of Art and Design, England, I landed a freelancing contract just a few days after returning home. How? I quite literally spammed some design companies!
STAGE 1: POSTING TINS WITH NO EXPLANATION
The first stage of this marketing campaign was very simple. I posted out empty tins/cans of SPAM meat in the post. After eating the SPAM (it tastes OK on a sandwich — there’s millions of staving people out there, I wasn’t going to waste it), I targeted a few design companies that I would like to work for and stuck a stamp directly onto the cans with their addresses and posted them. Yes, that was it. Just an address with no explanation on the tins.
I repeated this process over several days, until each company I targeted received about 5 tins through the post. Here in the UK, if you post something with a stamp on it, and it’s not hazardous, the ‘postie’ has to deliver it, so the SPAM got through okay.
My hope was for staff at the targeted design companies to ponder the meaning of the SPAM tins. I hoped it would create discussion between team members, with bemusement with each and every can posted to them. I anticipated reactions like this:
What the heck is this? Another tin of SPAM…this is the third one this week! What’s it all about?
Hay you guys, does anyone know who posting this SPAM? If someone’s playing a joke on me, which one of you is it?
Well, I found out later than I did promote discussions like this…read on…
STAGE 2: POSTING A SPAM-BRANDED FOLDER WITH MY CV
After I had finished posting of the SPAM cans, I waited a day or two, then sent out a folder showing a tin of SPAM on the cover stating “You’ve Been Spammed” (shown in the image below).
The folder was about A5 in size and opened up like a four-page brochure.
When opened, my covering letter and CV (printed on A4 paper) were folded in half and tucked inside the mock-up SPAM can, as shown in the three images below.
This folder was designed to put to rest all discussions and curiosities surrounding my “Spamming Campaign”. My covering letter contained this text:
Title in Spam-Shaped box at top simply said: What?
I am a recent graduate from the Coventry University School of Art and Design seeking employment. As a former student, I’m hard-up and living off SPAM — so your Post-Box has been Spammed rather than your In-box to let you know who I am!
Ok, I’m not really living off SPAM, but I am looking for a job in a company such as yours in this region. I believe that I could be a benefit to you and your clients…[and so on].
STAGE 3: THE JOB OFFER
Well, those curious reactions I was banking on to land me a job was a reality. I was invited to do various free-lancing work at Wobble Design Ltd in Leeds, UK. When I went to work there on the first day, the design team told me the reason I got the job was for my ingenious marketing campaign. They said they were curious to the reasons they was receiving my little empty cans of tin meat, and it promoted many discussions between them and the architecture firm next door!
So, if you’re wanting to stand out from the crowd, be different and do something unusual. If you want a Graphic Design job or any other job, just be creative, be different and set yourself apart from the crowd. You never know where it will lead you.
But if you’re fed-up with hearing about SPAM, here’s a lovely photo for you instead. Enjoy!
Image copyright here
Have you marketed yourself in an outrageous manner? If so, did it get you anywhere? I’d like to hear your stories…
This article is dedicated to the Blog Action Day Poverty Fund as part of the Jacob Cass Group Writing Project, together with a PayPal donation. The proceeds go directly to the fund to help stamp out World-wide Poverty. You can visit the official Blog Action Day site here. Top Image copyright here.