Personal Branding: The Importance of Marketing Yourself

From people fresh out of college to experienced professionals looking for a new position, your job search begins long before you create the resume you’ll give to potential employees. Before you start submitting your resume and cover letter, you need to work on building your personal brand and marketing yourself to others. You can do this on social media sites, in blogs, when attending professional conferences, when doing volunteer work, and more. Here are some reasons that personal branding is key to your job hunt:

Gain Self-awareness

As you work on your personal branding, you’ll gain a better self-awareness. You’ll understand where you stand against the competitors, or other people looking for similar employment positions. You’ll come to figure out the types of things that you can do to get a leg up on the competition, too. Maybe you’ll discover the need to get a particular certificate or get further training in skills that would help you get the position you want. When you have greater self-awareness, you’ll be able to determine how marketable you currently are and what you can do to become more marketable.

Differentiation from Competitors

As you work on your brand, you need to show employers how you differ from the other people applying. Companies get stacks of resumes and cover letters all the time. Build an online portfolio for potential employers to visit, so they can see examples of your work firsthand. Create a blog that you can update on a regular basis. Write about things that pertain to your field, so your employer will see how knowledgeable and experienced you are in your field. You can use these methods to not only tell employers why you’re different but to show them.

Provides Specific Examples

When you go in for an interview, employers want details. They don’t want you to just tell them that you’re a skilled negotiator, they want to hear an example of when you put this skill to good use. They don’t want you to tell them that you’re creative and think outside of the box, they want to see and hear about examples of you being creative. Your marketing efforts will allow you to do this.

Prepare for Interviews

As you build your brand and market yourself, you’ll feel better prepared for interviews. Not only will you have a portfolio that you can rely on to show the interviewer examples of your work, but you’ll also have a wealth of information that you can draw from to answer questions and exemplify why you would be the perfect fit for the position.
Most people use social media as a way to post pictures, connect with friends, and tell the world whatever is on their mind. When you’re looking for a job, your social media sites may be the first introduction that your new employer will have of you. Decide the kind of reputation that you want to get, and market yourself in a way to help convey you to others. You’ll find that personal branding is more important than ever before, and marketing yourself can make or break you when being considered for a job.

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