In today’s competitive jobs market, personal branding - self-promotion, self-marketing, personal promotion - can play a huge role when trying to land a dream role. Marketing yourself effectively to stand out amongst the crowd does take time, but with the right level of understanding it can become second nature. Try not feel overwhelmed by the ever-widening pool of candidates in your selected industry, and to focus on your own profile. Begin with a few questions: how can you shout about what you’ve achieved effectively? How will you reach the people that matter to your career? How would you like to be perceived by others? We’ve created a ten point guide to help you to answer these questions and more.
Conduct a social media audit
An increasing number of employees now place more emphasis on how a candidate conducts themselves online, from posts on LinkedIn to Twitter comments. Whatever your thoughts about online privacy, if you have decided to share personal information or story online, a prospective employer may be watching too. This isn’t to say that you should erase any traces of friends and family, but you should have a look through your online profiles to clean up your more risqué posts.
Research existing job posts
Industries need to adapt quickly to stay ahead of the competition, which often means that new hires must be multi-skilled and up-to-date with what employers are searching for. One of the best ways to do this is to study existing job posts to spot any trends and buzzwords which you can research further and apply to your CV respectively.
Embrace offline opportunities
Entrepreneurs and small businesses make up a huge part of the UK economy. As a result, creative, collective events have formed to help fledgling businesses to grow and share ideas. Freelancers also rely on these occasions to create new contacts. Get involved in this progressive way to do business, and remember that being unemployed shouldn’t make you feel out of place as you will have at least one skill or idea worth sharing.
Introverts and extroverts can both excel
Introverts and extroverts operate differently around others, it’s just a fact of life. If you are an introvert who struggles to interact with new people, particularly those who are judging your credentials, focus your networking efforts online to increase your confidence before building up to phone calls and eventually networking events. If your head is clouded by anxiety, get into the habit of writing frequent notes so that you don’t miss a detail.
Study your favourite business leaders
Find out how your favourite business leaders started out on their own journeys by researching industry blogs and references online. You can also study their LinkedIn profiles, from education and first role to where they are today, to get a sense of how they progressed and which skills they chose to highlight.
Update your personal details
Your CV and cover letter should reflect the person you are today and not the person who typed up their experience a year ago. Similarly, if your teenage self created an email address along the lines of lovelyjubbly99@hotmail, consider updating your email address to something simple and professional: your name and a number if necessary is fine.
Have your own business card
Business cards are now cheap and easy to create online so invest in your own calling cards to leave a lasting impression. Amidst the digital age, handing someone a business card remains one of the cheapest and more personal ways to make an effective, direct connection.
Remember to relate every point back to your existing skills, interests and experience. If you build a personal brand around future skills rather than present credentials, and buzzwords which you think employers might like to read, this alternative persona will be dishonest and exhausting to maintain.
Tailor every application
A recruiter or employer will receive a number of applications for one position, so they will tend to use resume screening software to match keywords. One of the best ways to help you to stand out from the crowd is to include the job position in your cover letter and optimise your documents with skill and experience keywords that the company is looking for - as long as they relate to your career.
Patience is required
Finally, we want to reiterate that finding a job can take time. You may have other commitments which limit you to part-time work or you are reliant on public transport that limits you geographically. Whatever your situation, take the time to showcase yourself to land not just any job, but the right role for you.
LoveLocalJobs.com is an award winning recruitment service in the South East with more than 100 collective years of recruitment and careers experience. Our team is passionate about supporting local communities and providing skills, advice and training to jobseekers. Please get in touch on 01273 651100 to find out more.