Adventures in job hunting: Misleading job descriptions.

I had a phone interview for a job scheduled for today at 11:00.

The job that I applied for was for a Marketing Coordinator for one of the most major beverage companies in the world.

I read the job description and it talked about creating and implementing a marketing plan, determining new markets and sectors for which to expand the brand, using communication platforms to deliver messages and promotions of the products and deciding events to sponsor. These are all typical marketing related tasks.

The ENTIRE job description mentioned that it was for this particular beverage brand. NOWHERE in the job description did it mention that it was for any other brand, or anything but this particular beverage brand.

Get three minutes into the phone interview and he lets me know that the job isn’t actually for this brand at all, it’s for one of their subsidiaries.

Fine.

Whatever.

Then, he asks me what makes me want to work for this brand – the subsidiary, not what I thought I was applying for.

I told him the position seemed like a challenge that I would be great for and I was excited at the prospect.

Then he said ‘No, not why you want this position, why do you want to work for this brand (the subsidiary)?

I again mentioned the position seemed like something that would excite me.

And again, he said ‘I know why you think the position is great, but why did you want to work for this brand (the subsidiary)?

Well, sir, I didn’t actually know I was applying for a job with this subsidiary until about a minute ago when you told me. There was no listing of the subsidiary anywhere in the job posting. At all.

Scuffles on the other end of the phone.

‘You’re not very quick at thinking on your feet, are you?’ he asks.

‘Guess not!’ I said and tried to laugh it off, knowing this was going to be held against me.

Then he goes on to say ‘Well, I’ll explain to you a little more about the position. As a member of our sales team..’

Hold up.

Nothing in the job description mentioned ANYTHING about sales. ‘Oh, the job description didn’t mention anything about sales?’ I calmly, casually suggested.

He says ‘Well Marketing Activation is, by definition, sales’.

I disagree with that statement on its face. But whatever.

He goes on to explain that this position is a sales role and commission based.

So I applied to a job that I believed was going to be branding, marketing and establishing this company into new avenues in Western Canada.

The job was actually for a sales position for a subsidiary company in which the job-holder is to drive around the prairie provinces asking different gas stations and arenas and venues if they’re willing to carry this product and what kind of deal I could arrange to sell them these products.

Dear Influencers, you’re not relatable anymore.

Yeah, I’m talking about those influencers who have built their careers around a sense of relatability.

Influencers who, as more and more people connect with them and who they are, they start changing, ever so slowly, to reflect their new-found popularity. And, eventually, they wind up becoming so far removed from where they started their careers that they no longer have the qualities about their personalities that people gravitated towards in the first place.

At one point in time, you were relatable. At one point in time, I felt like you were just like me. But, these days I see you in your multi-million dollar homes, or $5,000 a month apartments, driving around your multiple $80,000 dollar cars and consistently telling us that we need to click your referral links, buy your crappy brand collaborations and give you money because you’re ‘just like us’ and I can’t help but think of how far removed you are from the reality that most of us experience, that you’re really not relatable to any of us anymore.

Don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing wrong with making money and there’s nothing wrong with finding success.

My issue is with the fact that, as you jet off to various exotic locations on holiday’s you’re not paying for, you claim to be one of us. You claim to understand what we go through. My problem is that, as you dip your finger in that $85 dollar lip balm that you’re telling us all to buy, you don’t even know how much it costs… because you don’t have to buy it yourself, you get it given to you.

There’s nothing wrong with making a lot of money. There’s nothing wrong with getting gifts. But I’d like you to remember that the majority of us, we don’t get these gifts and we certainly don’t have $85 dollars to spend on a single lip balm. Nor do we have the funds available to jet around the world and stay at these lavish hotels you’re vacationing at, that we know you aren’t paying for.

I appreciate the game, I do. And I am happy for you for finding the success that you have. I just don’t think that you understand, the very people who are the reason for your success in the first place are the very people you seem to be alienating these days. It’s clear that the money has changed you. And while we all evolve in life (yes, all of us evolve), pretending you’re still the same person you always were, while sitting in that million dollar mansion, it’s rather transparent. Pretending that nothing has changed and acting as though we, the viewers, don’t know any better really belittles the intelligence of your audience.

We see you peddling products in a sponsored video only to never be seen or acknowledged ever again. We see you blurring out the logo on your car as to not show what kind of vehicle you drive. We see you promoting sustainability to us whilst leading a life of over-consumption and materialism. So what is it? What’s the message you’re trying to promote her? Do as I say not as I do?

My advice to you: embrace who you are. Stop trying to pretend you’re the same old soul we fell in love with. Because you’re not. And that’s okay. Perhaps, if you embrace this newfound wealth and popularity and stop trying to ‘pull the wool over our eyes’, everyone could be happier. You could find a new audience, an audience that embraces your wealth and privilege, and stop treating your ‘die-hard OG Subscribers’ like they’re idiots. Because that’s what you’re doing. Trying to pretend you’re your regular old self is a lie. And when you lie to your subscribers, you’re treating them like idiots.

My further advice… be more conscious. Conscious of your footprint. Conscious of your over-consumption. Conscious of the fact that aren’t you once were. Conscious of the fact that, you’re not always going to be liked.

Also, be humble. Be grateful. You literally got where you are off the support of others. So please stop acting like you’re god’s gift to youtube. Because without all of those people who watched supported you, you wouldn’t have a dime. So please stop saying ‘I don’t owe you anything’. Because when you really break it down – you do owe your viewers. This beautiful life you’re leading is because of them.

I recently watched a video on youtube in which someone, I’m sure you all know the name of, bought every pumpkin in a pumpkin patch to fill his back yard with pumpkins so that his family members didn’t have to go all the way to the pumpkin patch to pick a pumpkin for Halloween.

Cute, right? Totally cute. Egregious, over-the-top and completely unnecessary? Abso-fucking-lutely. Considering they only ended up using four of the pumpkins, what did they do with the rest? Did they give them to neighbours? Did they donate them? Did they send them back to the pumpkin patch so that people in his area didn’t have to go to the pumpkin patch to find out there weren’t any there? We don’t know. Because they don’t tell us. They simply flex their wealth and opulence and then end the video… because they don’t ‘owe anyone anything’.

All I’m saying is, acknowledge that you’re not the person you once were. Acknowledge that the eight vehicles in your garage are because you lead a really privileged life, and that not everyone gets to live that way. Stop trying to pretend you’re a regular ‘folk’ when you believe it’s appropriate to ‘try and keep us believing’.


Please note that while I’ve only given one specific example of a youtuber in this post, that is not my picking on them, it was just for example’s sake. Really, I believe this applies to A LOT of people who make their living being an ‘Influencer’.

Sporadic AF Thoughts, Nov 3.

I had such a good time writing the last post like this that I’ve decided I might do it more often. Though I still don’t like ‘AF’, so I need to come up with a new title. We’ll call that a work in progress.

After a week of feeling as though I really just wasn’t going to survive (yes, I am extremely over-dramatic when I am sick), I am finally starting to feel somewhat/relatively human again. I’m not 100%, but I can feel myself getting better, and that’s what’s important.

The sweet and wonderful Hilary from SereneLuna Blog sent me the kindest early birthday card/present and it absolutely brightened my spirits this week. There’s something about a hand written letter/note that will just never go out of style in my heart. It’s timeless, it’s so thoughtful and it really makes you (in this case me) feel as though someone genuinely cares. I think that’s why I really appreciate thoughtful birthday cards. Does anyone else keep their birthday cards? I keep mine. Is that weird?

I’ve been on the hunt for a ‘natural’ deodorant for a couple years now. And yes, I fully understand the dichotomy that ‘natural’ deodorants present. I think the biggest struggle that I am having in this search is that the majority of deodorants marketed as ‘natural’ are ingredient based in essential oils. I happen to be wildly allergic to most essential oils and using these products often causes me to get blistery rashes. So how does one find a ‘natural’ deodorant without any essential oils in it?

There’s been a growing narrative in Canada about a divided country, as the ‘Wexit’ movement gets propagated in the media and is gaining steam. Meanwhile, more and more multi-million dollar corporations have collected their tax-cuts from the Alberta government and are fleeing. Jason Kenney is running the narrative that this is ‘Trudeau’s fault’, ignoring the very basic fact that trickle-down economics don’t work. Trickle-down economics have never worked. The rich stay rich by hoarding their riches. They don’t invest it into their employees and the economy through sponsorship and infrastructure, they lock it in bank accounts in far off lands that have limited laws with respect to banking.

Following in the footsteps of his idol, the holier than thou Trump of Donald Senior, Jason Kenney handed out a corporate tax cut earlier this year promising the public this was a smart move for a better Alberta and that this would benefit everyone. And, as the corporations have subsequently taken their money and run, the Wexit movement now has more than 40,000 members on their online platform. Interesting…

It didn’t work when Donald Trump did it. It hasn’t ever worked for any government before and we all knew that it wasn’t going to work for Jason Kenney, but he did it anyway. He sold the public on a bill of goods that was built on pillars of salt and sand, meanwhile silencing anyone who dared remind him that trickle-down economics don’t work.

Now, I know that politics can get rather boring for people to follow at times, so I relate this to pop culture. Remember this fact: the rich get rich by hoarding their riches.

Kylie Jenner has recently been named the youngest self-made billionaire ever. Kylie, along with the rest of the Kardashian family, has a slew of employees who work for her. In her home, in her office, in the factories making the cosmetics that she sells. It’s widely reported that each and every one of her employees make minimum wage. It’s also been claimed by the employees who make Kylie Cosmetics that they’re not even provided with the basic safety equipment and working environment to help them properly do their jobs. According to the employees they’re paid only minimum wage, the bare legal minimum that Kylie has to pay them, not provided health insurance, and can at times, work upwards of twelve hours or more on a single shift during peak ‘launches’ for the line. All while only wearing a hear net and safety goggles.

The laboratory that Jenner uses is the same lab that Colour Pop cosmetics uses. And, it’s worth noting that these claims have also been made about Colour Pop Cosmetics as an employer. (Please note these claims of the factory and working conditions have not been verified through what I would consider… “media sources” for lack of better terminology. They’re Indeed reviews, youtube videos of ‘Why I quit working for Kylie’ and so on)

Why does Kylie only pay her employees the bare minimum wage legally required of her in the state of California? Simply put, would she be the youngest self made billionaire had she given them raises? Would she be the youngest self made billionaire had she offered any form of health insurance, chosen to upgrade the factory which her cosmetics are produced, offered employees more safety equipment to do their jobs? Likely not. Rich people stay rich by hoarding their riches.

Now I’m not hating here. I’m simply stating the facts as they relate to politics and they relate popular culture. What the girl has done is created a relatively average product, found the bare minimum it could possibly cost her to produce it and used ‘her brand’ to price it at a markup so high that in just a few short years she’s become a billionaire. She actually sounds pretty intelligent to me. But, she also reminds me of the very important point that trickle-down economics don’t work. In politics, in business, in Alberta, in life in general, it’s human nature to hoard our riches. Therefore, it really doesn’t matter who is in charge, the Oil Industry is still dying and Alberta is still in denial. Okay, I’ve talked about this for farrrrrr too long.

It’s raining outside. Pouring, actually. Consequently the downpour outside my window mimics the downpour in my head. Too many thoughts, too little time. I am a shallow heart with a wandering mind who is presently second guessing anything and everything that I possibly can. I’ll be 31 soon. It’s time to get my life together. I wonder what that looks like.

This is not a popularity contest.

Marketing is something that we all do every day. It’s how we do business, it’s how we blog, it’s how we use social media. Heck, it’s how we make friends and how we get along with our families! You might not think of it this way, but we’re marketing ourselves with respect to our present situations. How you behave and how you act when you’re around people, it’s a form of marketing yourself. Whether that be when you’re out with friends, or at a family dinner. It’s a skill that we all have, albeit some have more skill than others. But I truly, wholeheartedly believe that if you have the right resources, you can tap your potential as good as anyone else.

Something I see people doing every day, with respect to digital marketing, social media, blogging, and so on and so forth, is that they treat it as a popularity contest.

Digital marketing is not high school and this is absolutely not a popularity contest. Being successful is not about being the most popular person in the crowd. Being successful is about being strategic, making smart moves and doing things to benefit you and your quest for bettering your content.

Successful companies use social media, digital marketing and blogging as means to spread information and build relationships with customers. Unsuccessful companies purchase followers in a hopes to look better but ultimately never get the Return On Investment (ROI) that they’re looking for.

Successful bloggers and social media personalities use their platforms as a means to share information, meet new people and make new friends. Even celebrities! They want to build relationships with people, make sure that if someone reads their blog, they want to come back.

  1. Do not focus on the follower count. Furthermore, do not focus on the following count. If you’re successfully marketing your brand – be it through a blog, Twitter, Instagram or any other platform, the number of followers does not matter. In fact, if you’re properly marketing yourself these number can often fluctuate. Some days they’ll go up, other days they’ll go down.
  2. Do focus on interaction. When someone likes/comments on your blog, tweet, post, etc… this is what’s important. This shows that your content matters. This shows that your words, your art or your contributions to the web have resonated with someone. If they take the time to like/comment on your blog, make sure you take the time to let them know you appreciate their time.

I think that people get so wrapped up in trying to gain followers that they fail to realize it’s better to have 100 people read something when you have 100 followers, then it is to have 100 people read something when you have 100,000 followers. Ultimately, the goal should be to communicate with other’s and to showcase your work, not to be more popular then ‘the next person’.

If you want to grow your presence, genuinely, focus on interaction. Focus on ensuring that, whether you have 20 followers or 200 followers, they see your posts, they read your words or they view your artwork. Because it’s the people who invest in you that you need to invest in.

I cannot stress this enough: STOP LOOKING AT FOLLOWER COUNT. What matters is that people hear you, they understand you and they appreciate you. What doesn’t matter is that you’re popular. Because I can assure you of this, even the most successful of bloggers in this world don’t do it for popularity. They do it because they love what they do and they want to share, to connect, to appreciate.

Also, you can still feel hella unpopular and hella lonely even with thousands or hundreds of thousands of followers if your followers don’t pay attention to your content.


Story time:

My former boss was under the impression that having 600,000 followers on twitter meant that 600,000 people were reading every tweet that was put out.

Every time that we tweeted and he didn’t allow us pay attention to the feedback we were getting, less and less people would bother reading our tweets the next time. Not only that but, every time we distributed tweeted, not listening to the feedback we were getting, we would lose followers in droves. People were becoming uninterested in what we were sharing and we were failing to build relationships with our audience.

His answer? Buy more leads. Buy more followers. (Yes, this a second boss telling me that buying more followers is the solution to digital marketing) According to him, all we needed to do was buy more followers for our twitter account.

As a result, over the period of six months in which he was in charge of Digital Services, our twitter analytics systematically declined in readership and systematically increased in unfollow rates.

It wasn’t until he went on holiday that I had free power to design the social media distribution the way I wanted, taking into account the feedback I’d been receiving for months. We went from an average of 25-35% interaction per tweet to having 70% and 74% interaction during the two weeks he was on holiday.

When I showed the analytics to ‘Upper Management’ they agreed with me (for the first time ever) and we began taking a new approach to our emails, blog and social media – one that was about sharing information and building relationships, listening to the feedback we were being given and using that for our growth. We focused on our digital platforms being a two-way flow of communication. It wasn’t until my boss stopped counting followers each day that the followers actually started growing. They were growing because, for the first time in the six months he’d been my boss, we were actually taking the right approach to digital marketing.

Since leaving the organization, I do believe they’ve reverted back to their old ways and they’re up to their old tricks. When I left, I left them with a twitter account that had 680,000 followers and was getting between 8,000 – 20,000 likes/retweets per tweet that I put out (depending on the time of day). In just ten and a half months since I’ve been there, their following on twitter has grown to 1,000,200. But, somehow, their average like/retweet rate per tweet they put out is 100-150.

Yeah, they have over 1,000,000 twitter followers and they get 100-150 likes/retweets per tweet. This is why it shouldn’t be a popularity contest. With over 1 million followers, they’re averaging a rate of 100-150 likes/retweets on their page.

So what’s better? Having 100 followers and knowing that 100 people are interacting with your tweets, or, having over 1,000,000 followers and having 100-150 people interact with your tweets?

People who half-ass their way through life.

I know that I’m ranting but I don’t understand this mentality. I don’t understand why groups of people believe that paying the least amount of attention possible towards the tasks they need to do is a great outlook towards life. This notion that not caring is ‘the cool’ thing to do is silly.

If you’re going to do something, you need to put your full effort forward. If you’re not going to put your full effort into it, why the hell are you even bothering to do it?

I hate sayings like ‘C’s get Degrees’ and ‘Any effort is good effort’ because these catch phrases promote the notion that if you apply only half, or a third or even less of your capabilities, you’re still doing yourself a favour. You’e really doing yourself a disservice if you’re not putting your full efforts into the things that you do.

No Olympian gets to the track and says ‘You know what, I’m going to run at half my speed today. Just finishing the race is all that matters.” An Olympian is someone who will operate under the mentality that even if they pass out on the other side of the finish line, they’re going to leave 110% of their speed in that race.

If time has told us anything in this life it’s that the most successful people in history, and in present are those who put their full heart, passions, skills and desires into everything they do. No one ever accomplished greatness by saying ‘Average is better than nothing’…

I’m annoyed.

My aunt stopped by this morning, unannounced(this aunt).

Naturally, my first desire was to go upstairs at 8:30 when she showed up and casually remind her that she’s an asshole and there’s no need to be that mean and such a petty bitch. But, I’m trying to keep the peace in the family. I’m trying to not sink to a level that would add fuel to her tempestuous fire.

So, I decided to stay downstairs. I decided to stay away from her because I knew if I went near her, I was going to have to be nice to her. And I didn’t want to be nice to her. I don’t think she deserves my being nice to her. That may sound childish, but that’s how I feel.

Because she just lives to annoy people, she decided that she needed to come downstairs and speak to me about our last conversation.

According to her, my reaction to the discussion and subsequent hanging up on her only showcases to her even more how childish and immature I am and how if I keep up this attitude, I’m virtually never going to find success as an adult.

According to me a decent fucking human being doesn’t talk to anyone that way, let alone someone who is your family.

My response? “Thanks for your input. I’ll take it into consideration along with the fact that you know absolutely nothing about my life and have a propensity to treat people like shit. Once everything has been considered, I’ll be sure to not tell you the conclusion that I’ve reached because, as a reminder, just because you’re family does not mean that I have to talk to you. Have a nice day!”

Then I smiled and closed the door in her face.

Just because someone is your fucking family member does not mean that they have the right to treat you like shit. No one should be able to treat someone like that, regardless of relationship or lack of relationship. I’ll keep my peace and I’ll keep my thoughts to myself but god damn, if she shows up here unannounced again, I’m locking the door and hoping she just leaves.

I’m trying to not let this eat away at my entire day. But, as mentioned earlier in the week – once I get angry, it’s sometimes hard for me to come back down…

Why I dislike ‘Influencers’.

This is a subject that I’m really passionate about. I dislike the term ‘Influencer’. I dislike promoting ‘Influencers’, but I will talk about a couple in this post, or examples sake. I just don’t think they deserve the publicity they get. I dislike the fact that they claim their fame willingly and are happy to reap the rewards of said fame, but hold very little accountability when it comes to the things they do.

  1. Influence is a powerful thing and something that should never be taken for granted, yet I find that so many influencers really don’t give a damn about that fact. They’re just out for money. And damn, if they have a large enough following it doesn’t even seem like they have to work for that money. It just seems to get handed to them. Vegans promoting meat, minimalists promoting stockpiling, devout Christians exclaiming their followers should save themselves for marriage whilst sitting there unmarried and pregnant. It’s a weird, weird world, the internet.
  2. They seem very entitled. “I don’t owe you guys anything” is a statement that really annoys me when I’m watching Youtube videos. You choose to put yourself online. You choose to sell yourself to the likes of coffee creamers and adult diapers for a dollar and then when someone asks you questions the answer is ‘I don’t owe you guys anything’? If you don’t want to owe anyone a response, don’t make the statement to start with.
  3. They seem so disingenuous. There is one particular ‘Influencer’ who I watched peddle a product on their Instagram in four separate photos talking about how amazing it was and how it blew competitors out of the water. Two months later, I saw them make a Youtube video in which they proclaimed they had never actually tried that product. Girl was getting so many sponsored Instagram posts that she couldn’t even remember what she was sponsored for long enough to not put her foot in her mouth. And, when she was called out on it, for her Instagram photos, she deleted the Instagram photos and then began blocking those users calling her out. She presently has 3.7 million subscibers on Youtube and when anyone calls out her ‘slip-ups’, she blocks them. And honestly, she’s not a one off. It happens all the time. On Youtube channels big and small.
  4. Influencers promote mass consumption/over consumption. Honestly, the makeup, the clothing, the ‘HAULS’ the excess of everything that they need to have and brag about having… it’s not necessary. None of it is necessary. But, if you put a smile on your face and slap a filter on it, there’s always someone (a naive soul) on this earth who will spend their money on it.
  5. None of them appear to be making original content anymore. Have you ever watched a Youtube video before and thought ‘Man, I’ve seen this 30 times already!’ Yeah, that seems to happen a lot these days. Favourites videos and fashion hauls, so on and so forth… it’s all the same no matter what Youtube channel you watch.
  6. I absolutely despise when they post ‘Hauls’ and leave the tags visibly on the products because you know they’ve only purchased the things to make a video and then they’re sending the products right back. This isn’t just with clothes, it’s with makeup and toys and home goods and luxury goods. They want to make it look like they’re spending a lot of money when in reality, you’re never going to see that item again because it’s going right back to the store it came from.
  7. “Full transparency, this video is not sponsored, I’m just going to go on and on for the next eight minutes about how much I love this one particular product for no reason.” Full transparency doesn’t mean much to me on the web. People lie. All the time. Especially in the world of Youtube, especially with ‘Influencers’ who live in countries in which there are no regulations stating they need to acknowledge when content is sponsored. If you’re ever in doubt, there’s a 95% chance their content is sponsored.
  8. I wholeheartedly believe they’re given so much stuff that they lose sight of what basic things cost because they just don’t have to buy them anymore. There’s a good chance when an ‘Influencer’ claims something is affordable, it might be… for them… because they don’t buy anything anymore. But for us regular folk, it’s definitely not affordable.
  9. So much drama. Seriously – The majority of James Charles’ audience is young teenagers and look at all the shit he’s pulled this year! Jake Paul and Tana Mongeau held a fake marriage in Las Vegas and charged people $49.99 to watch a livestream of it. Nikita Dragun paid a male model to be her boyfriend. Jaclyn Hill released defective lipsticks and started insulting people when they called her out on it. There’s a reason why Gossip Channels have skyrocketed in popularity this year… it’s because they seem to be the only channels wiling to be transparent and honest.
  10. “I make more than a doctor.” Girl, we get it. You make a lot of money. That totally natural photo of you leaning out the window of your hotel in France to promote a lipstick we’ll never see you wear ever again probably pays you a quarter of my 2018 salary. And those adult diapers you claim to make your 9 and 10 year old kids wear on roadtrips because you don’t like to stop, probably boosted your pay to half my salary last year. None of it seems natural though. None of it seems even remotely real. And I hope that I’m not alone in thinking this.

Personally, I cringe when I see #AD #SP #Sponored #Partner or any other remotely similar thing included in Youtube Videos or Instagram post. It immediately makes me think ‘well, I know what the company told them to say, so how about I go and find a video or post that was not sponsored to be able to see a real review. Because these ‘Influencers’ have cornered the market of the very real reality that is people use google for review of products before they buy.

Men, women across the world are making millions of dollars advertising products to people online that they’ve never seen nor used and they’re being less than transparent about it. And not just money they’re getting either. They’re getting free trips, tickets to Coachella, being given vehicles and so on and so forth. It’s just not real. They’re chasing this fancy, exorbitant lifestyle so hard that they’re willing to sell anything in the process.

Think it’s just adults doing this? ‘Ryan’s Toy Review’ is a multi-million dollar making seven year old that deceptively markets, through his Youtube channel (with help of his parents), a multitude of products to young school and preschool aged children in violation of rules from the FTC. It’s estimated that 90% of the content on the channel is sponsored, leaving just 10% to be organic genuine content. If adults have a hard enough time trying to determine what is and isn’t sponsored on Youtube, imagine how impossible that would be for a preschooler.

I guess the point of this rant is just to say, don’t believe everything that you read online. Odds are, if there’s money involved, there’s more to the story than what you’re being told.