Don’t Blow It with the Interview

So your resume looks awesome, and you’ve got pictures that make babies smile – but if your next promo includes an interview, don’t assume it’s in the bag yet.

A promo interview is not like other interviews – it’s a lot harder. Let’s face it, you aren’t applying to be an accountant – you are applying to be a personality. That means you not only need to know how to do the job, but you also need to have the right attitude while doing it.

While there are a variety of promo jobs you could possibly interview for, there are some key qualities you should have if you are working in the promotional marketing industry. Here are three of the most popular ones:

Do You Make Me Happy?

Promotional marketing is a very profitable industry. Brands spend thousands of dollars on campaigns that may include thousands of dollars in equipment. If you are being interviewed, you are directly responsible for the success of their very expensive project. Are you nervous yet?

Your role, in addition to helping the campaign complete successfully, is to make people happy. You need to make the marketing department happy. You need to make the customer’s happy. If you are managing, you need to make sure your staff is happy. The interview is where you show you are able to do this.

Approach every promo interview with a smile and a positive attitude. It’s okay to be nervous, but don’t freak out so much that you make your interviewer nervous. Go there to have fun, not like you’re going to have a tooth pulled.

Are You Organized?

If you are applying for any promotional management position, they need to know that you are organized. Event professionals who manage any part of an event handle large amounts of event logistics. This can include staff, materials, scheduling and even transportation. If you are not organized, you will not be successful in promotional event management.

There is an easy way to show organizational skills while at a job interview:

  • Show up on time.
  • Bring a notebook and pen for taking notes
  • Bring 3 -5 resumes
  • Have reference information prepared
  • Have examples of projects you’ve completed before

Are You Flexible?

You can’t really judge how flexible a person is based on their resume or photos. However, flexibility is the key to success in the promo world. The interview is the best time to show this skill (if you have it). If you aren’t very flexible, now would be the time to start doing yoga.

Questions about flexibility will often be phrased as:

  • “Tell me about a promo that didn’t go as planned.”
  • “Three staff members no-showed, what do you do?”
  • “How do you respond to a customer that starts bad-mouthing the product at the booth?”

You interviewer is trying to see if you will freak out if a promo doesn’t go as planned.

And let’s face it, promos rarely go as planned.

Be prepared by having examples of your ‘grace under fire’ ready to deliver with a smile.