Opinion

The XXX way to easily grow your digital marketing career

Malcolm Auld has discovered one simple growth hack to get you to the next stage of your career, fast: sprinkle a few Xs into your job title.

Here’s another digital marketing case study, from the “you can’t make this shit up” files.

As you know the marketing industry has become infested with virtue signallers and fake marketers who make outrageous claims and sweeping generalisations about the industry, to try and position themselves as legitimately having some sort of expertise.

Sites like LinkedIn are adorned with self-serving wallpaper promoting miracle ways to be a LinkedIn legend, glib motivational statements for instant success, secret sauce sellers, and “fluencers” of all shapes and sizes.

Given the apparent gullibility of the market to believe this stuff, a mate of mine has decided to run some tests, particularly to see what the automation tools detect within his LinkedIn profile.

He works in sales, most recently selling advertising in digital publications. Given the luvfest for everything “X” (eg CX and UX) currently infecting the industry, he decided to change his job title.

As an aside, why do marketers suddenly have an obsession with customer experience? Hasn’t the customer experience been the key to staying in business since the year dot? If you don’t acquire new customers and keep them regularly spending with you for as long as possible, you don’t have a business. Seems UX and CX are just virtue signals. But I digress.

To capitalise on this latest X-trend, this salesman removed sales manager from his title. He replaced it with an “X”. He called himself a HX Manager to see what it might do to the bots that trawl candidates on LinkedIn.

It only took a day for a result.

He got a call from a digital marketing recruiter. In a very enthusiastic voice she said she was keen to discuss his HX experience, claiming that HX is a growing area of marketing. She asked him to explain his HX expertise for her. (You can’t make this shit up…)

So he did. He said it meant he was a “human experience” manager. In other words, he worked with people selling stuff to them. Bloody amazing stuff this HX. She was well impressed, and asked him to apply for a job she is filling for a global brand, in its UX/CX division.

But he’s decided to expand his HX title to something that is even more descriptive. He is now an IRLX Optimisation Director.

That’s right folks, he’s now an In Real Life Experiences Optimisation Director. In layman’s terms, he sells things to people. And he’s already had one job inquiry, thanks to the brilliant marketing automation tools being used by recruiters to find talent.

Like many, I find the digital marketing industry’s obsession with renaming everything that exists in marketing, for no other reason than there is a digital component, rather tedious. The industry’s labeling by obfuscation is more embarrassing than productive.

I find it easier to understand when people just get straight to the point, like Bob Hoffman does when sharing the truth about the digital marketing industry: “you can’t make this shit up…” is one of his most used phrases.

And you don’t have to make it up. The rubbish that permeates the marketing industry claiming to be truth, is pure XXX-rated rubbish, and it gives you loads to work with to help advance your career.

For example, you can call yourself an XMN – that’s an Expert Marketing Ninja.

Or maybe an XCXMX – experienced customer experience marketing expert.

Maybe we establish another way of using X, with a Roman Numeral bent? Just as the Xs on clothing labels expand with your years (X to XXL) so too they can expand with your career:

  • XMX = 10 years’ marketing expertise
  • XXMX = 20 years’ marketing expertise
  • XXXMX = 30 years’ marketing expertise

These X-options are unlimited, and guess what? You can make this shit up – because there’s a digital marketing sucker born every minute who’ll buy it from you.

Malcolm Auld is founder of The Content Brewery. The original version of this article first appeared on his blog.

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