Sales and marketing positions are in great demand right now within technology in Ontario. Just take a look at tech job boards in Kitchener-Waterloo and Toronto and you will see lots of jobs posted for sales and marketing. The challenge for new grads or people that want to make a career switch is that there are few jobs for people with very little experience. Most jobs require at least 2-3 years of past sales and marketing experience.
At VA Partners and with other past employers, I have often hired recent grads with little or no experience. It takes time and effort to develop them, so this method is not for everyone. I often talk to recent grads about what they can do to get experience in sales or marketing without having a corporate job. The good news is that there are lots of things you can do to get sales and marketing experience.
Social media plays a large role in modern sales and marketing. These platforms are free to join and use. Many recent grads may already be using Facebook, Snapchat, or Instagram. These platforms are not used the same way from a corporate perspective and there are others that should be considered. The most important for B2B is Linkedin. It is important to have a good profile and a number of connections. These connections can also help with your job search. One of the other ways to show expertise is to share content that supports the industry or position you are looking for. This is a great way to show perspective employers that you are active and understand social media.
Content marketing is playing a key role in the sales and marketing efforts of organizations of all sizes across different verticals. Content marketing has traditionally been a marketing domain, but this has changed with sales playing a bigger role. You can use a platform like Medium or Linkedin to post your writing. If you are looking at a marketing job, I suggest creating your own blog using WordPress. You can gain experience with publishing, creating pages, and using different plugins. Create content that supports the type of job or experience that you are looking to have. You can post your content through your social media channels.
Events and Networking
There are many sales and marketing events throughout Southern Ontario; some are expensive to attend, but there are also many events that are free or require a small fee. I suggest checking out your local One Network Organization, like MaRS in Toronto, Communitech in Waterloo Region, or the Innovation Factory in Hamilton. There are also great events through tools like Meetup. These events can serve as great educational opportunities, provide content for your own writing, and networking can help with the job search. Check out the VA Partners events blog for an overview of upcoming events in your area.
There are many great sources of free or paid educational content. As an example, Google has free courses highlighting tools like AdWords and Google Analytics. Other vendors like Hootsuite and Hubspot have lots of great free whitepapers, webinars, and courses on marketing. There are also lots of great courses available through Udemy on both sales and marketing. There are typically a few more marketing resources available than sales, but for great sales content, check out Sales for Life and VA Partners’ resources.
There has never been a time where prospective sales and marketing candidates had access to so many resources. Make use of the resources available they will provide a platform to educate you, show your skills, show initiative, and help with finding a job. For great sales and marketing content check out our monthly newsletter highlighting sales, marketing and social media.