In mid October 2010, my friend David Perry called me and shared some of his insight.
“Donato, in the Detroit area, there are hundreds of Exhaust System Engineers, yet when I do a Google Search, I can only find a handful of them. ”
David was explaining this while speaking to a group of recruiters. “This is a problem, these engineers are not on the radar of recruiters.”
The Back story: A recruiters first step in finding a candidate is his own database. Next, recruiters leverage the Internet for candidates. Job Boards, Social Media and open web searches are the tools of the trade. Only after the immediate sources are exhausted do recruiters start the process of “direct recruiting”; looking for new candidates via referrals and many, many conversations.
Most job seekers don’t understand this.
If you are not in the recruiters database and you are not present on the Internet, to the recruiter, you don’t exist.
David had impeccable timing. Over the previous year, I had been absorbing all I could in the realm of search engine optimization (SEO). In my own initiatives, I had earned the top spot in Google many times. “How can SEO help job seekers”? I thought.
While on the phone, I did a quick Google search for “Exhaust System Engineer”. David was right; few of these engineers were available via a search engine query. Next, I proposed an hypothesis to David. He liked it.
On October 19, 2010 I registered ExhaustSystemEngineer.com. It cost about $8 from GoDaddy.com.
Using WordPress.org, I set up a blog and hosted the domain for an additional $20 for the year. No technical knowledge is needed. If you don’t know how to do it, the people at Godaddy are very helpful. Total cost $28.
Next, I added a few excerpts from articles about exhaust systems. The single paragraph had links to the original article. After adding some content to the site, I found some articles about exhaust systems to comment on, leaving my blog address. (it is important here to leave real comments and show an interest in someone else’s work, otherwise it is seen as comment spam).
As the last step I signed up for Twitter and created the username ExhaustEngineer. My first Tweet was an announcement of my blog, ExhaustSystemEngineer.com. The total time spent to do this exercise was about 1 hour. If you were doing it for the first time, it may take you 2-3 hours to get familiar with WordPress.
On October 21, 2010, 2 days after registering the domain, creating a blog and adding some content, a the first Google search result for Exhaust System Engineer was ExhaustSystemEngineer.com.
If I was a real Exhaust System Engineer, the next step would be to add my resume and contact information to blog and keep it updated with fresh content.
After 3 years: If you google: Exhaust System Engineer, the site I created almost 3 years ago is still #1.
Remember, if you are not present on the Internet, you don’t exist to most recruiters. The difference between being found or not is taking action.