January is a tough month for job seekers; statistically it is the month in which the most job applications are made. Recruiters are inundated with resumes and competition for jobs is fierce. Did you know that personal branding can help you to find a job? In fact it can help you to become so visible that potential employers actually headhunt you! Creating an impactful personal brand is a free tool, once you know how, that will ensure you stand out from the crowd. I want to show you what steps to take to brand yourself to ensure that employers to notice you.
What is personal branding?
Your personal brand is your way of defining who you are, what you have achieved, why you are unique and what value you can offer to employers.
Why is personal branding important to my job search?
Research shows that recruiters only spend 6.25 seconds looking at a candidate’s CV and in this competitive job market most job adverts receive upwards of 500 applications. Having a solid personal brand helps you to grab the attention of the hiring manager and allows you to clearly communicate your unique value proposition that sets you apart.
Top personal branding tips for job seekers:
Create Your Brand Identity –your brand identity, or personal profile, is your first introduction to an employer and should engage the reader by showcasing your qualifications, specialisation, achievements and “power” words to describe your soft skills & characteristics.
You Are Unique – defining your unique value proposition, what differentiates you from the other candidates on the market, shows recruiters that you are the only person qualified for this role. Research the in-demand skills in your field and decide how to position yourself as an expert in your sector.
Brand Your CV - once you have identified your personal brand, ensure you are conveying it in your CV. Tailor your brand statement for each job application, mirror language and keywords used in job adverts to help you beat the Applicant Tracking System (ATS) that most employers now use
Brand Your Online Presence - your brand identity should be consistent across any social media platforms that you use for work from LinkedIn to Twitter. Clean up your digital footprint (yes, we do google you…. yes, old YouTube videos or inappropriate tweets may come up….), remember that your reputation will have a reflection on your employers reputation. Ensure you have an All-Star ranking on LinkedIn. Put yourself forward for media articles or blog interviews to increase your online presence
- Build a Well-Connected Network – once you have a powerful profile across your online platforms, grow your network by connecting with leaders in your field. Offer valuable content on your social platforms; and post consistently to keep your profile at the top of their feed. Find ways to expand your network by attending networking events and sector conferences
Personal branding is an important tool in your job search that will ensure you gain the attention you deserve. Creating an authentic brand identity, that is true to yourself, will also ensure you secure promotions, win new business or develop stronger relationships. Afterall, your most valuable asset is yourself!