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One of the more interesting small business CRMs I’ve seen recently is Streak CRM, which lives inside your Gmail account. Streak lets you manage and flag various emails and senders to follow up with them. It’s handy for managing a sales process that doesn’t require a lot of complexity or a full blown salesforce automation solution.

As such, Streak is ideally suited for the ultimate small sales process: job seeking. Let’s take a look at how to make this tool work for your job search.

Installing Streak CRM is relatively straightforward – it’s a Chrome extension. Once you’ve got it installed, the first thing you’ll need to do is set up a new pipeline. Streak comes packaged with a bunch of different sales and marketing pipelines, but none customized for being hired. Here’s an example one I set up to illustrate:

Breaking "the rules" of email marketing - cspenn@gmail.com - Gmail

You can and should customize to your own job search process, as this is merely an example. You’ll want to set up this pipeline to at least account for a few different stages – companies and contacts you’d like to work for, companies and contacts you’ve been in touch with, and then the later stages of job search, like phone screens, in person interviews, and final potential employers’ offers.

Once your pipeline is set up, the next step is to identify either new contacts or existing ones. Streak CRM calls individual companies “boxes”, with various contacts and activities in that box. To set up a box for an existing email in your inbox, simply tag it:

Breaking "the rules" of email marketing - cspenn@gmail.com - Gmail

To create a new box for a company that’s a cold prospect, start your email to them and create a new box as you do:

Compose Mail - cspenn@gmail.com - Gmail

Once you’ve created the box, you’ll then assign it to a stage in your hiring pipeline:

Breaking "the rules" of email marketing - cspenn@gmail.com - Gmail

Do this for everything and everyone that you’re looking to contact, and then your pipeline will fill up with all of your hiring prospects:

Projects We Love: Internet Poetry - cspenn@gmail.com - Gmail

Now that you’ve got everything in your pipeline, take the time to go through each prospect and denote when you should be doing followup actions like checking in on your application or scheduling an interview:

Inbox (3) - cspenn@gmail.com - Gmail

Do all of these things and you’ll have a complete, organized view of your job seeking process so that no opportunity falls through the cracks. Unlike a regular sales job, looking for a job only needs one sale to be a huge success, which means that rigorous use of a system like this will reap rewards faster than a usual sales process.

Using a system like this will give you an edge over less organized job seekers – try it out, and if you successfully land a new gig because of it, please let me know!

Disclosure: I have no idea if Kickstarter or DJ Waldow are hiring. I used them merely as examples. WhatCounts is hiring, if you’re interested in an email marketing career.

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