There have been a lot of creative stunts by the unemployed in the past — remember Joshua Persky, who strapped a sandwich board over his suit that said “Unemployed MIT Grad for Hire”, or Alec Brownstein who bought $6 worth of “vanity” Google search ads to get the attention of top advertising executives. But 28-year-old Mork Encino, who lost his job in construction more than a year ago, has taken it to another level: He’s offering to let anyone willing to pony up $10,000 to hunt him — with a gun ... maybe.
"I seek hearty gents who fancy themselves sportsmen and bored of the usual game. I am a new breed of prey with thick pelt and smooth hide. I’m faster than a wild turkey, smart as any [bleep] wild boar and willing to make the ultimate sacrifice for the monetary health of my family," Encino writes on his web site HuntMe4Sport.com.
The whole thing seems a little hokey: In photos on his web site, Mork’s overalls are a little too clean, his hillbilly-isms a little too forced and his poses hiding in the brush a little too staged. Plus, his brand new New Balance sneakers are a dead giveway, says Jason Sadler, founder of IWearYourShirt.com.
Even Encino, if that is his real name, dodges the obvious question — this would be murder or attempted murder, right?
“I haven’t dived too deep into specifics,” Encino said in an email interview. “That said, I’m guessing the handoff would go just about the same way as any other illicit business like in the movies. You know, ‘Got the stuff? Got the money? Shoot ‘em up!’” he said, adding, “Clearly the legalities surrounding this thing are murky at best.”
But the larger point is that he’s got our attention. He has a couple hundred followers on Twitter (http://www.twitter.com/morkencino), an Internet search for “Mork Encino” turns up nearly 8,000 results, and a search for "HuntMe4Sport" turns up about 13,000. He’s been interviewed by nearly every major media outlet. He’s got our attention.
“I think because of the clean New Balance shoeshe doesn’t actually intend on being hunted,” said Sadler, who's also teaching a class right now on social media called "Crowd Source: The Course." “I give this guy credit for doing something creative and if it lands him something else, he’s way smarter than the rest of us because he just got a job for saying he’s going to do something daring.”
Encino offers a wink that this is really about getting a job — not getting shot.
“I’m hoping someone will take note of all this — the site, the media, the attention — and think to themselves, ‘How can I help this young man?’” he said. “Getting hunted down and got is not my dream position! This is a job application!”
Encino has worked in construction, landscaping, fast food, farm work and cleaning out storage units but says he’s up for anything — be it in the country or big city. He’s just hoping to dig out and start making some money again.
Sadler, who’s heard one too many stories about clients asking for someone to “make a viral video” says big companies could stand to learn a thing or two from Encino and his deadly offer.
“Businesses need to realize that you don’t create viral content, you create good content and hope for it to go viral,” he said.
Encino’s viral marketing skills could be beneficial to any number of companies — whether it’s managing their social media, working on their advertising campaign — or starring in it.
“Why wouldn’t a hunting company like him? Why wouldn’t a Bass Pro Shop hire this guy? Most of their employees probably do the same old stuff. This guy thinks, ‘Hey, I’ll put myself out there. I’ll get attention.’ That’s what a lot of these companies need,” Sadler said.
“This guy’s got personality. That’s a perfect way to get some buzz — something going away from status quo,” he said. “It would be kind of cool for a brand to hire him as their ‘Man on the Run.’ Find Mork. He’s got exclusive offers for XYZ,” he said. “Then, whoever finds him gets $10,000.”
“There’s so much noise. So many messages being thrown at us all day long,” Sadler said. “You have to really stand out to make an impression.”
Sadler says job seekers could also learn a thing or two from him.
“People when hiring get a stack of papers on their desk,” Sadler said. “If you come up with an interesting campaign for someone to hire you, that speaks volumes about how much you want that job,” he said. “That’s what employers are looking for. Good, people, talented people, can always get a job. It’s people who are lazy who sit back … those are the people who have a hard time getting a job.”
“This is a real every man for himself type economy right now,” Encino said.
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