Recently in the past few months I was laid off from work, so I figured why not go the freelance route and see if that was a viable option. I was getting work, but I still had time on my hands so I figured why not start applying to other jobs and see what would come of it. I spent a week sending out resumes and emails and got little or no response. I used sites like Indeed to apply to a plethora of different jobs and still nothing. So I figured it was time to growth hack the shit out of this.
There was one job in particular that really stuck out to me, which was at a local creative agency in Chicago. Their description of the job was everything in my wheelhouse so I figured lets go all out and see what would happen. So I looked on their team page, found the CEO and began digging online.
He had done a good job at keeping a lot of his Facebook likes and interest private, so I went to Twitter. In the past few years he had used it primarily for business so I went further into the past. I saw that he liked mint ice cream...but unless I invited him to Jeni's Ice Cream that was a dead lead.
Then I saw it.
He had mentioned Lost a few times on Twitter and it was one of the two likes that had shown up on his Facebook profile. I figured it was worth a shot and if anything it would be a good story (like the one I'm telling now).
I scoured eBay, looking for Lost memorabilia that would stand out and then I found it. There was a $20 or so Hurley figurine that would be perfect to drop on their doorstep. So I ordered it, and it arrived in the mail a few days later. I repackaged it, wrapped the box in my resume and had it delivered to their office. The next morning I had one new email in my inbox and it was from him.
First off, thank you for sending me a Hurley toy doll! This gift probably would have been a lot more exciting back in 2014 but nonetheless, you got my attention! We are impressed with your qualifications and would like the opportunity to learn more about your experience and career goals.
They had received my application before but it was buried in a sea of other people that wanted a job just like me, but I stood out. Sometimes every piece of your pitch will be perfect such as your copy or your email subject, but will just arrive along with everyone else's ish.
Maybe you aren't looking for a job, maybe you are looking to score a big client. This same principle will work for you too. Who doesn't love receiving mail. You can't replace the feeling of getting something in the mail with an electronic form. Having something tangible in someone's hands makes them feel like you give a damn (and you probably do if you are buying random gifts for strangers).
So next time you are banging your head against the wall for new ideas, get outside your comfort zone and do something weird!