The crazy email story [Part 1]

Hey Angel,

I actually can't believe it. In the 2+ years of writing this email to you -- week in, week out -- I've never told you this story.

I'm embarrassed at myself. Goodness

Darling, today I'm going to tell you Part 1 of a hero's tale.

It's a tale about one of the more outlandish and farfetched networking emails I ever attempted.

The back story is this: As you know by now, I moved to San Francisco after completing a Masters Degree over in England in early 2013.

Repatriating was *really* not agreeing with me, but I still needed to work. I had to look for a job.

I was a little bit screwed. I had already graduated, and I knew basically no one in San Francisco. So I started cold-call emailing and hunting for weak ties.

This story is about one such very, very weak tie.

I had got it in my head that I wanted to work in Community Management at SoundCloud. They had a little outpost in San Francisco, and it seemed like a good way to blend my skillset with one of my passions.

(Sidenote: This is obviously all pretty f*cking hilarious, I realize. Not even a year after this email, I moved to Berlin AKA SoundCloud HQ.)

Did I know anybody at SoundCloud? Nah. Are they a pretty big deal? For sure. So I went creeping around LinkedIn and tried to find some way through the door.

(Sidenote again: LOL I know ~sooooooo~ many people at SoundCloud now.)

After a lot of digging, here's what I came up with:

I found one guy who, by my estimation, was probably about 2 years older than me.

He had studied at the bigger university up the street from my smaller conservatory in England.

A quick Google and Twitter check, and I was willing to stake money on us having gone to a couple of the same bars. Know your audience, right?

And he was working on the Community team at SoundCloud HQ in Berlin!

Good enough for me.

Let's go for it.

Subject Line: This, right here, is absolutely an experiment in worldwide networking....



Hope you're having a lovely week! I'm about to explain--with great and marvelous efficiency--how it is that I've come to be emailing you:

I recently finished my MA in Performance at [MY UNIVERSITY]. An American according to my birth certificate, I moved back to the States in February, setting up shop in San Francisco and looking for opportunities in Community Management. (Are you starting to connect the dots yet?)

Obviously, music-obsessed creature that I am, I know SoundCloud has a presence in the Bay Area. I immediately went about searching for any contacts I might have in their--er, your--community team. It would be a bit of dream to work in music tech, and I always find that the best way to learn more about the field is to start chatting with people who already have the job you'd eventually want. Right? Right.

Which brings me back to you. After coming up a little bit empty-handed with my search as far as the SoundCloud San Francisco offices were concerned, I happened upon your name. I made the connection that, in addition to my aspirations towards your current career path, we've probably both been to the [PUB I'VE BEEN TO IN LEEDS]. And I figured, hey, it couldn't hurt--the Brud is so often a sign of destiny!

So, as a roundabout conclusion to my forays in global networking, I'm hoping that you might possibly be able to put me in touch with a community contact in the San Francisco offices. Like I mentioned, it would be brilliant to pick someone's brain a bit here in the city about community management + music tech, and possibly even learn a little more about SoundCloud in the process.

But even if not, I hope my (terribly charming and not even slightly desperate) email has managed to brighten up your day.


Alexa Shoen


I pressed Send.

Well done me, I thought.

God, I really can't believe I've never told you this story before.

I'm gonna share Part 2 of this story on Thursday, so watch your inbox.

PS: If you're reading this story and thinking, "How the f*ck does she do this?" I want you to stick with me. I'm gonna be showing you some amazing job search tactics over the next month, so watch your inbox. I got you.