Meet Ailton, a 23-year-old Boston native studying sociology at Suffolk University. Between class and studying, he finds event work as a brand ambassador and promotional model to help support his studies and fuel his dream of making it in the world of entertainment. We sat down with Ailton to find out a little bit more about what motivates him and why he loves to work events.
How did you get into event and promotional work? I was working at my retail job on Newbury Street and they were hosting an event at CollegeFest. I met some people working a different booth and they told me all about event work. When I heard that the hours are flexible with great pay, it really clicked for me.
So that’s how you motivated to start working events, how long have you been doing event work? Since the fall of 2014 so about 7 months consistently.
Do you remember the first event you worked as a Brand Ambassador? Yes! It was in November of last year. A social camera app was running a promotion at the airport where people could take pictures with props for Thanksgiving. It was a really fun event.
Very cool. So what have you seen to be the benefits of working events?
Really it’s the freedom to choose when you want to work, with flexible hours you can make your own schedule.
So if you have anything else going on like a passion project or you want to spend time at home with family and friends, you can find the time to do so. Also, the networking is great. I’m always out at interesting events meeting a lot of cool people.
What are some of your favorite type of events to work? I’d say the guerilla events because I like to go out and do my own thing, throw some creativity into it. I think conventions are fun too, I just did Pax East and had a great time because you meet some many different people. Those are my top two types of events to work.
What do you do to find work to fill the schedule? That’s really the most time-consuming thing, I spend a lot of time looking at different company sites and posting boards to see what’s available. I’m signed up with 7 companies right now so that 7 different websites or portals I have to log into to see if there’s work. Some weeks if there aren’t many opportunities to work I just go and sign up for another company. But for every company I sign up for I have to fill out paperwork, so that ends up being more work.
Seems like a lot of moving parts, what are some of the frustrations? Number one, the pay. I worked an event in November and didn’t get paid till March. I’ve had events where they pay a week or two later, but sometimes it’s month out and you have to track down the payments.
So part of my freedom is lost when I have to spend tracking down checks. I actually have an excel sheet I use to manage my event work, without that, I would probably never get paid (laughs).
You’ve tried Jobble, how does it compare to what you’ve been doing? Jobble is a great idea and it’s super simple. When I first heard about it I was really excited and jumped right on. I was just talking with some friends who work events about how there has to be a better way to manage everything.
How has the experience been using the Jobble app? It’s really just been super easy. I love the fact that everything’s in there and it’s one place to find event work. When I apply to an event I can see that my application is pending and when it’s accepted, or not. When I apply through companies they really only respond if they accept me, so it’s nice to actually see what my application status is. The payments are easy too. When the event ends I can see that I’ve been paid directly in the app.
So what do you see are the benefits of using Jobble?
The fact that I get paid within 48hrs after an event and that payment is direct deposited, that helps a lot.
Before with the companies I work with, they send out checks so I would have to find time to go to the bank and deposit it. Also just the whole streamline that all my events are in one place, it makes it simple. It’s all about simplicity; Apple made the smartphone much simpler and I think Jobble is making this whole industry simpler.
How about advice for people just starting to look for event and promotional work? Just don’t give up. You have to stay motivated to work. The hardest job to get is the first one, but after that they just trickle down and it gets easier and easier to find work.