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Joining a Community to Open Opportunity
By: Mike Bush
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As pointed out on PaidContent, Gawker’s automotive blog, Jalopnik, recently hired a new editor based on his participating in the comments section of the blog. As author Matt Ingram points out, this isn’t the first time that Gawker has used their comments section as a virtual “farm system,” and Gawker is hardly alone in the practice.
If you’re on a TalentZoo website, it seems like there’s a good chance you’re looking for a new opportunity (or perhaps, a freelance opportunity to augment your income, or whatever).
Here are three things we can take from Gawker’s hiring methodology that might help us land a new gig (or client):
  • Get noticed in a community. If there’s a company you’re interested in joining, identify LinkedIn groups or online communities where that company is represented and join the conversations.  I’m not saying to do this in a way that’s completely fake. If the CEO of the company you’re interested in working for is hanging out in a Cat-lovers community and you’re a dog person, don’t fake it… find something else that you’re passionate about and that someone in that company is passionate about. But becoming a contributor to a cause or group can set you up for success in your goal of landing the client or job.
  • Make sure you’re creating content somewhere. Whether it’s hosting your own site, contributing to an industry specific blog, or even occasional contributing materials to an industry rag, we work in PR and Marketing… content creation is, was, and always will be part of our job. The ability to share your thoughts and highlight what you bring to the table has never been more prevalent.
  • Remember, networking doesn’t have to be limited to online. Is there a non-profit you’re interested ion freelancing for? Find out what events they might have coming up and attend them. In fact, non-profit entities aside, if there’s a company you’d like to work with, identify events they might be sponsoring (and likely attending), and go introduce yourself to every representative they have there.
Gawker isn’t alone in hiring people they’ve gotten to know. The old saying “it’s not what you know, but who you know,” still holds water. And because of the technology of today, it’s never been easier to “know” more people.

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About the Author
Mike Bush is a PR and Marketing freelancer with more than a dozen years of experience in the field. Find him on and connect Twitter @mikebush or at www.mikebush.nyc. 
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