An online friend of mine, Nancy Vaughn of White Book Agency in Florida , recently published a blog article entitled “How to pull off an guerrilla marketing campaign.”  ( In it she suggests four elements one should include: be unexpected, make it fun, work creatively with your budget, and consider the benefits to the customer. 

These are great tips for marketing. They go a long way to explaining what happened to me at a Canadian Tire store today when I went in to a Canadian Tire to have a flat fixed and ended up paying $100 for a front end alignment.  I paid for it with my brand-new Canadian Tire credit card featuring $50 in store coupons, a long distance plan, and a pair of shorts from a local sporting goods store, and a green non-disposable shopping bag.  Now all I need to do is learn how to spell “guerrilla” without conjuring the image of King Kong clinging to the side of the Empire State Building.

As I read the piece, I couldn’t help but think that I use exactly the same tactics when I market my clients to employers.

I should qualify myself first. I am not a recruiter, and nor am I a marketer in the traditional sense. My clients all have physical disabilities of some kind, and my agency is paid by the Province of British Columbia to place them in either full time, part time, or volunteer positions. I place them, support them through employment, then I close their files after being successfully employed for 15 months.

For those in the market for a job, here are a few examples of how this can be done

1. Be Unexpected:

Welcome to Hollywood North. I had a client who had an artistic bent, and he wished to enter the film industry in the field of post-production. To be more specific, he wanted to do some form of editing known as compositing. We did a thorough internet search and generated a list of Vancouver companies that did just that. We searched their websites.

One made a spelling error. Their webmaster spelled COMPOSITING  “C-O-M-P-O-S-T-I-N-G.”

2. Make it fun:

I wasted no time. I called them up and offered the manager a contract to dispose of 300 pounds of spent coffee grounds.

“What are you talking about.” He asked.

“Well,” I said, “It says on your website that you do composting, and I’m a caterer for the film company making that famous vampire movie. I thought vampires drank blood. Do you have any idea how much coffee they go through? Don’t they know coffee gives you wrinkles?”

3. Work creatively with your budget:

I could have gone to the company, but I thought it would be easier to work on the phone. It would have  been hard to produce 300 pounds of coffee grounds.

 4. Benefits to the customer

After several minutes of mirth, I introduced myself more formally and presented the benefits for himself and his company if we could work out a deal to hire my client. I posed several options

  1. He could hire my client outright and pay him a handsome salary to fill a vacancy that exists that we haven’t found
  2. If he hired my client, I might be able to consider finding some sort of wage subsidy that would help him through a waiting period
  3. I could propose an internship where my client would get some hands-on experience and then compete for a position as it came up

There were other options I could have presented. For example, I could have proposed how hiring my client would enhance his bottom line, but that didn’t make any sense at the time. The work is highly specialized and involves stuff that only on-the-job training would handle. The client and the employer chose the last one. It would address two problems: getting work done and offering training. We scheduled an interview, and my client has just completed nine months of employment after a three month internship.

Now if I can just find a green way to get rid of those coffee grounds.

Mike Broderick is an Employment Specialist for the Neil Squire Society in Burnaby, BC, Canada where he finds employment for people with physical disabilities. Part of this work means affiliation with the Vancouver Board of Trade where he is a member of the Ambassador Club, the Burnaby Board of Trade where he is a member of the Labour Task Force, the Tri Cities Chamber of Commerce where he is an active member of the 10X10 initiative, and the Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce. He does some work as a field Archaeologist and is a fitness instructor and frequent contributor of fitness humour articles to alive magazine in Port Coquitlam. You can reach him at home at or at or at 604-464-4195.  If you’re looking for a career change, he is the Spin Doctor and can give you a resume makeover at competitive rates When he is not doing all this he lives in Port Coquitlam with his partner Cecelia.



  1. Sharon Says:

    So funny with great tips, Mike. Put the hypothetical coffee grounds in your garden. Earth worms love it and the coarseness helps keep the ground loose.

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