Market Yourself by Creating Your Image and Telling Your Story
As you start circulating your resume around for companies to see, keep in mind almost 40 percent of employers now search social networks when screening applicants, writes Forbes. Another 34 percent said they passed on a candidate because of content they found on the social media sites. These stats say you need to create an image, and be in control of it. Otherwise, the image people find of you online may not be the one you want.
Decide What Image You Want to Portray
The three questions to understanding the image you want, according to the Daily Muse in Forbes, include:
- How do you affect the people around you?
- Who benefits from what you do?
- What actions do you take to generate that benefit?
With a better understanding of these three areas of your image, or brand, you can construct a short statement that describes you, such as:
- “The people I work with are motivated by my desire to create amazing logo graphics for my clients.”
- “My peers respect my skills at resolving complicated logistics problems to keep my customers’ companies running smoothly.”
- “My ability to clearly articulate clinical research results gets high marks from all of my supervisors.”
Getting Ready To Market Yourself
Now, you can take this vision of yourself and use it as a basis to develop your resume, create ideas for an online blog, or pen social media posts. Another step is to create a personal website, so you have a central place to which you can direct people who want to know more about you.
Your website need not be complex because the purpose is to inform people about who you are, not showcase your website design skills. To keep your website and information secure, consider hosting by Windows VPS at MyHosting.com or a similarly stable platform. You have plenty of things to keep you busy, and you don’t need to worry about your website getting hacked.
Take It on the Road — Online
Social media is another step. Get yourself on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and Google +. These sites give you the ability to present yourself to the general public, which lets you practice delivering your story.
Next, you can get more specific in targeting your message. If you are a graphic artist, create circles in Google + to draw in other graphic artists to converse with. Fan pages in Facebook will do the same thing. To connect with the professional population, LinkedIn is the place to be. There, you can even create groups that focus on a particular topic, such as graphic design for small business.
The Huffington Post says to make sure your resume matches the social profile you put in place online. Recruiters and HR personnel may research you online, and having your information in sync makes it easier for them to identify you and validate your information.
Take Your Message Offline
Find local special interest groups to join. Meetup.com lists various groups around you that might be useful. Industry-specific groups will get you in touch with people connected to your own interests. One way to get in front of such a group is to physically get close to the group. Offer to speak at a meeting. Talk about a particular technique you learned that people may find helpful.
Again, if you are heading into a career of graphic design, demonstrate some new software you used in school to create corporate logos. Show off some of your work, and talk about your inspiration for each one. Offering to teach is a way to build up a reputation, and gain support from people you work with.
Adding these offline networking activities to your online social media projects builds a network of diverse resources into which you can tap for references and job recommendations. In this age of the solo-entrepreneur, you may even meet someone with whom you could start a business.