How Job Hunters are using Facebook to Target Employers: PART 1

Grant Turck takes time out to talk to me about how he launched a targeted Facebook campaign at the Public relations firms he wanted to work at. Grant explains how he did it. What it costs and the results. He also has advice for others considering doing the same thing.


David Perry: How do I find you on Facebook, because that is what we’re here to talk about today?

Grant Turck: On Facebook you can search for me in the Search box under Grant Turck and I should pop right up.


David: I wanted to talk to you today, Grant, about what you did specifically on Facebook because you just graduated from Pepperdine University in Public Relations, right?

Grant: Correct.


David: You’re looking for a PR job in Hollywood, here in Los Angeles. Tell me, why did you use Facebook, how did this come about, what have the results been?

Grant: The first thing I did is I picked up a copy of your book, which I found out about one day when I was watching NBC News and they had some recruitment guy {The Recruiting Animal} on there talking about what you should do and he said, “The number one thing you should do is pick up this book-“


David: I’ll have to find that tape! [Laughter]

Grant: “-by David Perry and Jay Conrad Levinson called Guerrilla Marketing for Job Hunters 2.0.” I picked that book up and read through it and was looking for good ideas and one of the ideas in there was talking about Facebook advertising.   It talked about how despite our recommendation to do Facebook advertising and how powerful it is at making one stand out, the percentage of people that will actually take us up on what we say is very, very, very, very miniscule.  I said, “What the heck. I’ll try this. They say it’s not going to cost much and it’s very easy.” So I did. I took you guys up on what you said in your book and it’s turned out great.


David: How did it work out? Did you get interviews out of it?

Grant: The greatest thing I got out of it was exposure and publicity for myself, which is the number one thing, and not just in Los Angeles or Hollywood but in this world at large in this job market is to make myself stand out from the crowd, so with Facebook advertising, if you target your ads specifically to those people that you want to reach directly in a very, kind of creative manner that not many people seem to take advantage of.


David: Everybody wants to know what are the results? Did you actually get any interviews?

Grant: Yeah, I’ve actually had, in the past four or five weeks, about one interview a week.


David: Okay. Have you gotten any offers, or are they ongoing conversations?

Grant: Several ongoing conversations and I’ve had one offer.


David: Obviously you didn’t take it because we’re sitting here talking, right?

Grant: Yes.


David: That’s an assumption. So with the Facebook targeting, is there anything else you’re doing in conjunction, or is there anything else you think you should be doing, or somebody else that is watching should be doing in conjunction with Facebook?

Grant: Yeah, definitely. There is always more one can do in the self promotion game. I think that is the key to getting a job these days. You have to self-promote yourself because if you’re not self-promoting yourself nobody else is going to.

I’m finally getting my blog started, so I just have my blog up and it’s going to be


David: Turckish Delights?

Grant: Yes, playing off of my last name and the unique branding of Turckish Delights.


David: That’s cool.

Grant: I’m going to start doing a blog. I do Twitter. I do LinkedIn.


David: Where do you get the most amounts of hits? I know you’re on LinkedIn. Where are you getting the biggest bang for your buck? Is it with Facebook? With Twitter? Is it with LinkedIn?

Grant: I think with Facebook, I think it really has all come about the entire nexus. I’ve recommended people to be on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter, I would say those are the top three to invest time into doing each one of those in conjunction with one another as being the most important.


David: How much time is that typically taking out of your day?

Grant: To maintain it I would say anywhere from two to three hours.


David: Okay, that’s just two to three hours casually, or two to three hours working at pushing it to the next level?

Grant: I would say two to three hours casually, maybe like one hour hardcore direct focus.


David: The Facebook interviews that you got, they were target companies?

Grant: Yeah.


David: And how did they come about? I mean, who did you target? How did they find you? What unfolded?

Grant: I’ve done several different types of ads on Facebook. I’ve done ones that have just been focused on the keyword “public relations” in Canada and the United States. I put focused on specific companies within public relations, sometimes I was running maybe 20 different ads with all basically the same relative body copy within the ad but the headline was different.  So it would say “I want to work at Bite.” “I want to work at GH” for Golin Harris, or “I want to work at _____” and then just target those specific company names within the targeting.  With Facebook advertising you don’t have to worry that somebody from Golin Harris is going to see your ad that you’re running the same time for Bite Communications because-


David: Oh, I didn’t know that.

Grant: -if you don’t have that you worked at Bite Communications in your résumé and you’re now working at the other company, you’re never going to see the ad.


David: So what these people, Bite is one that you talked about, what happened at Bite? Who did you connect with and how did that interview come about?

Grant: That interview came about from a senior account executive at the company who saw the ad and wrote me an e-mail directly and actually said to me that he had never responded to an Internet ad ever before but saw my ad, was kind of uniquely intrigued by it and wanted to reach out to me and that it seemed like I had some great qualifications that could be a great fit for Bite and I should look at their Web site. If I was interested I should e-mail their HR person, and they gave me the HR person’s e-mail address and he said I could then say that he had referred me to the HR person.  I took a look at their Web site, it seemed like a great place to work, it was in San Francisco, so I emailed the HR person who then scheduled a phone interview which took place about a week, week-and-a-half later, and then about two weeks later I went out for a physical in-person interview where I interviewed with four different people within the company.


David: Then you got an offer that you ended up not taking.

Grant: Right.


David: So you went in at the HR level and the senior executive level, and we talk in the book specifically about entering, going in at the level of your boss’s boss. Is that the level you went in at?

Grant: With Bite Communications I would say probably so because I went in, the senior guy was the person who reached out to me and directed me to the HR person, and the interviews I landed I interviewed with the account manager with the team I would be working on, the senior account executive, the account executive, and then the HR person again, so I think I did go in at that higher level.


David: Okay. Now, do you have a top ten list as we talk about this in the book? Do you have a top ten list?

Grant: I don’t know if I have a top ten, like a full top ten list? I would say I have a top five list.


David: Are they all here in LA?

Grant: Yes.


David: Looking at the camera, who do you want to work for?

Grant: I want to work for Golin Harris; Rogers & Cowan; Bragman, Nyman, Cafarelli; Solters & Digney; or Warner Brothers.


David: Why those companies because you’re involved in other things. I mean you graduated from Pepperdine University with a degree in Public Relations, but you have other things that you work on that are really interesting. How can those programs you’re working on, the movies you’re working on, the books you’ve optioned…what was that one, The Secrets of…that you optioned for $20?

Grant: How to Succeed with Women Without Really Trying by Sheperd Mead, which is a book written in 1957. I’m pursuing that as a movie right now and we’ve just attached some great comedy writers, Dax Shelby and Robert Stevens. They’re a writing team so we’re currently going out next week to actors and talk with some people, Robert Downey, Jr., Matthew McConaughey, and folks like that to attach one of those names with the pitch that these guys come up with because the book is non-narrative, non-fiction and the plan is to take that pitch with the actor and take back to the studios for financing to have it written and developed and turned into a motion picture.


David: What is your involvement once it becomes an actual, what is it called, a product or…?

Grant: Once it gets put into active development and pre-production, which is basically my involvement, I’m a producer, I’ll be credited as a producer on the project, but when it comes down to the physical production that will be basically left up to another producer that does the physical line producing and on the set type stuff.


David: Once that happens, your involvement, other than getting paid for it, is gone?

Grant: Yeah, it’s minimal.


David: Tell me then, how these companies that you mentioned before, would benefit from hiring you given what else you’re doing. Is there a crossover? Is that an eco-system in itself that cross pollinates?

Grant: One of the things to look at from what I’ve done in the entertainment business is the ability that I’ve had to uniquely position myself and get things done that basically very few to no one else has been able to do.   For example, one of the other projects that I’m working on, which is John Grisham’s The Partner, which I’m producing with Lynn Hende and Robert Chartoff, and people might know Robert’s name because he won an Oscar for Rocky, is I brought the money to the table to get it done but I had never produced a movie ever before.  I knew one of the key things is that John Grisham – there are a lot of people in this city and Hollywood that want to make a John Grisham movie – is that because I never produced a movie before that John Grisham would never give me the rights to take his book and make it into a movie, so I knew that it would take somebody bringing somebody else on to the team with producing credibility to get that done so I went and brought Robert Chartoff on board and we pursued it together.


David: This is a family friend? How did you get Robert-?

Grant: I met Robert Chartoff through Lynn Hende who is the president of his company, and I met Lynn Hende through a client of mine, a science fiction author I was working with introduced me to Lynn Hende and said that if there is anybody in this business you can trust its Lynn.   I went to Lynn and said, “I have the money to get this project up and running but I don't have the producing credibility. Can we pursue the co-production together?” Luckily it turned out and she said yes and so we did pursue that together.  It’s very fortunate because a lot of times, especially in Hollywood, if you approach somebody and say, “There is this great book that would make a great movie,” they say, “Awesome, yeah, we’ll work together,” and you never hear back from that person again and they take that book and make it into a movie and you’re left on the sidewalk. I was very fortunate.


David: Where did you learn to do all of this? You’re not from here, right?

Grant: No, I’m from Cincinnati, Ohio, and I pride myself on the fact that I have no entertainment familial connection at all.


David: Where did you learn to do all the connections?

Grant: Just by doing. I learn best by doing and learning from mistakes and going with the flow. You learn so much more on the field than you do in the classroom.


David: Interesting. Facebook aside and LinkedIn aside, let’s go back to job hunters. I can see the value in hiring someone like you because you’ll just make connections until the deal is done, and that is the way things happen, right? Most people don’t realize that.  What kind of advice would you offer job hunters now that may be struggling? For example, how do you keep yourself motivated? You’re here in Hollywood, you’re family is not here, right?

Grant: Right, they’re back in Ohio.


David: They’re back in Ohio. You supported yourself through Pepperdine, you graduated, you’re now looking for a job, you have all these different projects on the go, and you’re looking for a full-time gig as an account manager for one of these firms, how do you keep yourself motivated? How do you keep yourself going every day?

Grant: I exercise. That’s very helpful, but very basic, too. It releases endorphins, but beside that I do a lot of reading and ultimately, it may sound kind of dumb but you just have to tell yourself that in the long run it’s all going to work out and it’s all going to be okay. Think positive. You just do it.


David: Any last suggestions?

Grant: Don’t be afraid of making mistakes.

Leave a Reply

If you want a picture to show with your comment, go get a Gravatar.