Recent grad advertises himself to start his career in advertising


There are well over 10 million Canadians registered on Facebook and this statistic is growing every year. Zak Katz, a University of Western Ontario alumnus and one of those 10 million users, decided to use Canada’s Facebook fanaticism to his advantage.

Zak studied management and finance and, after graduation, started looking for positions in advertising. He created a blog containing information for potential employers so he could include the address to a personal website on his business cards.

zakkatzadOne day, while he was surfing Facebook, he noticed the different types of advertisements running on the side of the website. Since job hunting is essentially promoting your skills to employers, Zak decided to create a personal ad to help him find a job.

Zak’s Facebook ad falls under the headline: “Hire Zak Katz” and includes his picture and a small description. Clicking his ad redirects you to Zak’s blog, which includes his cover letter and current resume. Zak used his insider knowledge of the marketing industry and Facebook’s suggestions to optimize his ad’s appeal. His goal was to make the ad appear basic with a clear message.

Facebook allows advertisers to target their promotions by selecting key words and specific cities where the ad will appear. By inputting these two components, Facebook can generate an approximate number of people that will view the ad. Zak inputted buzz words like certain job titles, companies, and terms synonymous with advertising. He decided to promote himself in his hometown of Winnipeg, as well as the advertising hub of Canada: Toronto. The result was an approximate audience of 10,000 viewers for Zak’s Facebook marketing campaign.

Advertising isn’t free, however Zak argues Facebook is one of the more affordable venues for promotion. It is a small price to pay for being set apart from the job-seeking masses. Advertising on Facebook also shows that a knowledge of the evolution of the advertising industry.

Zak chose to pay based on the number of times his advertisement is clicked and set an initial budget of $100 for 2-3 weeks of advertising. Zak’s promotion was so popular that he hit the maximum daily charge of $25 on his first day. Due to this overwhelming response, Zak decided to allow his ad to run as long as needed. Though cost is slightly more than initially anticipated, Zak reasons that “it only has to work once and then [he’ll] make it back pretty soon”.

The ad went up on May 29, 2009, and the initial response was a lot of spam. Zak received floods of ‘work at home’ offers and invitations to ‘pyramid schemes.’ But, as time progressed, he began to see more encouraging responses. People from across Canada reached out to Zak with advice and helpful suggestions regarding the field of advertising.

The most exciting response has been from a local graphic design company who contacted him as a direct result of viewing his Facebook ad. The company was impressed with his ingenuity and arranged an informal meeting. As a result, Zak has been scheduled for an upcoming interview with the company’s president.

About the author

Ishani Nath is a proud McMaster alum, aspiring writer and current journalism grad student at Ryerson University. When she's not hammering out articles, she can usually be found on a patio or nestled on a couch trying to keep up with those crazy Kardashians. She hopes to one day have a job that makes her excited to get up each morning, or at least one that gives her free food. Intrigued? Enthralled? Learn more by following her on @ishaninath.