There are a lot of professional buzz-words thrown around these days, but there’s one popular term that you really should pay attention to. And that is ‘personal brand’. Just as your personal style in your social life might portray you as being sporty, fashionable, funny, or clever… You have your own unique style in your professional life too.
Before you head into your next job interview, pause to think about what your job search identity is going to be: How do you want to represent yourself?
Source: The Naked CEO.
What exactly is personal branding? According to Justin Thompson, Consumer Marketing Manager at Career Builder: “You have to consider yourself as a whole package or product – not just your skills and functional abilities, but also your personality, creativity, enthusiasm, passion, et cetera. Job seekers need to be able to wrap that up in a concise way so as to easily explain themselves to employers.”
How to start creating your personal brand?
You should craft a Unique Value Proposition or UVP. You can do so by making sure that you develop the following sections of your resume as strong foundations:
- work experience
- skills and abilities
- special interests
- command of languages
- technology skills
To make your branding effective, your content should be relevant to your target audience or employer. Your target audience could be any of the following: potential employers, past colleagues and supervisors, recruiters, networking groups, college or university alumni or teachers, or community members.
Your branding strategy also includes having a personal business card, social media profiles such as LinkedIn, Facebook, Google+ and Twitter, personal blog and a brand-compatible email, and a CV and cover letter.
Business Cards: Make sure that your card matches your brand and that all the important contact information is there.
Social Media Profiles: Delete any photo, group, or posts that you don’t want recruiters to see. Remove any information that you think will have a negative effect on your job application. Polish your social media profiles and make sure to include important information.
Resume: Have a well-written resume that should be tailored to the job position you are applying for. Highlight all relevant information and key words.
Cover letter: Your cover letter should be able to briefly explain to your potential writers the reasons why you are a perfect match for the job. Use appropriate key words.
Blog/personal website: Showcase your expertise by having a personal blog or site. You can post your portfolio to display all your work.
Still need more help? Here’s a brilliant workbook from PricewaterhouseCoopers that will guide you step by step in creating your personal brand.