YouTube can help get you a job even if you don't like putting your face on camera. That's what happened for Stanford student Feross Aboukhadijeh when he created YouTube Instant on a bet to his roommate. Aboukhadijeh built YouTube Instant shortly after the launch of Google Instant to bring the same insta-search features to the video platform.
The CEO of YouTube, Chad Hurley, was so impressed that he offered him a job over Twitter. Aboukhadijeh, now an employee at YouTube, continues to add features to his design while finishing his degree at Stanford.
Not all of us can build a site that will get noticed by major execs, but Aboukhadijeh proves that creativity and hirability aren't limited by your on-screen personality. Try programming, coding, sketching or designing something in your desired field. For example, create a new bird design for Twitter or better user interface for Facebook and post it online — you never know who's watching.
When 23-year-old Brian Freedman saw an ad to write financial articles for iGrad, a financial advice site for college students, he focused on a small side note offering to submit video instead. Freedman created a sample video on how to budget by using envelopes and was offered the job on the spot.
Freedman felt more comfortable speaking in front of a camera than writing a cover letter or traditional resume. YouTube allowed him to show his financial sense and on-screen personality to help him land the job ahead of other potential contributors. "Doing a video with YouTube is much more effective than a resume," Freedman said. "It basically shows what you can do, what you are capable of."
After nine videos, Freedman parted with iGrad to start his own channel taking a bluer (read: NSFW) approach to relationship advice. He was able to build his brand and draw in far more followers than with iGrad.
hese days, it's not uncommon for a company or employer to host a video contest on YouTube to draw in potential candidates. For example, Dr. Pepper teamed up with Step Up Director Jon M. Chu to hold a YouTube Dance Contest to find a dancer to feature in an Ultra Records music video — check out the winner's video above.
Video contests are so popular on YouTube that it has an entire page dedicated to contests ranging from short film contests to social good efforts. Keep an eye out for contests in your area of expertise and enter when the right opportunity comes along.
YouTube is a simple, snappy way to get yourself seen. Aside from the social media pop and pizazz, it's quickly becoming an effective way to own SEO terms, build a brand, and find jobs. While some video proficiency helps, fancy film work and high tech cameras aren't key to success. Approach YouTube with creativity, authenticity and consistency, and the results might just come your way.