When it’s job hunting time, too many candidates for direct marketing jobs forget everything they’ve learned about selling a product and think in terms of getting a job. If anyone should have an easy time of getting a job, it’s the direct marketing specialist, no? After all, what is job hunting but selling the most important product you have to offer – yourself? When you stop thinking in terms job seeking, and start thinking as you do when you’re developing a campaign to sell a new product, you’ll find the employers lining up to interview you – and offer you those direct marketing and database jobs for which you’ve been applying.Step I: Identify Your MarketThe first step in selling yourself is the same first step as in any direct marketing campaign – generating leads. Think back to what you’ve learned about identifying and developing your market. There are several ways to go about this. The most effective is to combine several.- Research through newspapers and job search sites to find direct marketing jobs that are vacant.- Draw up a list of firms for which you’d like to work.- Network. Mention your job hunt to everyone you know. Have a supply of business or contact cards available to hand out to anyone interested. Your mum’s hairdresser’s cousin may just be the secretary who typed up an advert for your dream position at work this afternoon. You never know where your sales leads may come from.Step II: Prepare Your Direct Marketing MaterialsTargeted mailings are the mainstay of most direct marketing jobs. You’ve identified your market – now put together your mailing: your CV and cover letter. Give it the same attention you’d give to your marketing campaigns – because it is your most important marketing campaign. Take the time to tailor your approach to fit the companies to which you’re applying. Your cover letter to each company should be different and aim to emphasize the skills and experience that will make you most attractive to them. It may be handy to rearrange your CV to aim for different direct marketing jobs and database jobs, putting the most important experience and honors up front for each position.Step III: Follow Up With Your ProspectsWait several days after sending out a CV to a company. If you haven’t heard back from them at the end of a week – most will at least send out a postcard acknowledging receipt of your CV – you can ring up to ‘check if your CV was received’. Do a bit of prospecting for information at the same time – will the company be scheduling interviews? When can you expect to hear? Is there anything in particular that might increase your chances of being considered for open direct marketing jobs?Step IV: Present Your Best SideIf your prospecting for leads is successful, think of your job interview as doing a sales presentation. Prepare yourself as carefully as you would to make a big sale to a prospect. You’ll find it far easier to present your abilities if you think of them as selling points rather than as ‘tooting your own horn’.Viewing your job interview as a sales presentation will also help you frame the right sorts of questions to ask your interviewer. When you’re selling a product, you aim your questions at discovering how your product can be most helpful to your prospect. The same sort of question to your interviewer will point out how valuable an asset you can be if the firm hires you for their vacant position.