Standing out in today’s job market can be challenging– especially if you’re applying for upper management positions that heavily emphasize soft skills, leadership skills, and emotional intelligence. The key is telling your story about how you’ve impacted work lives while highlighting your unique skillset. Influencer Marketing Hub explains “Your personal brand is how you promote yourself. It is the unique combination of skills, experience, and personality that you want the world to see.” Use these personal branding tips as a starting point to differentiate yourself as a top candidate with potential employers!
Tip #1: Harness The Power of Social
First and foremost, it will take some creativity to stand out from other high-level candidates on a similar career path. Your resume should remain simple and to the point, but that doesn’t mean your LinkedIn profile can’t showcase your personality. Leverage LinkedIn to home in on your personal brand and optimize each section with purpose.
Your social media presence should be updated and polished before you start applying for jobs. According to the Manifest survey, 90% of employers say that social media is important when evaluating a job candidate. And it’s not uncommon for employers to look at your profiles, especially when you make it to the top of their list.
Here are a few ways to update your LinkedIn profile:
- Optimize your About section with keywords
- Grow your network
- Update your profile picture to a professional headshot
- Ask old colleagues for recommendations
- Update your featured section to include your resume and portfolio PDF
Create a catchy headline that reflects your expertise in an eye-catching way. Write an engaging About section that hooks the reader immediately and encourages the employer to learn more. Add photos to your work timeline to give insight and credibility to your background. When all is said and done, ask your friends and family if they feel like your profile speaks to who you are as a person, not just a professional.
Tip #2: Create Personal Branding Assets
To take the previous tip a step further, we recommend creating personal branding assets that you can use across all mediums to maintain consistency and help you appear more memorable. Creating a LinkedIn cover photo, cover letter, portfolio, and website that provide a similar experience can help potential employers immediately recognize your name and unique selling points.
A 2020 survey from Manifest claims that 80% of employers say a personal website is important when evaluating a job candidate. You can find several free website templates that allow you to create a resource for employers to get to know you better. A site as simple as a Home, About, and Portfolio page can be the reason you get hired over another applicant.
Tip #3: Nail Down an Engaging Personal Statement
During your job search, you need to identify the unique characteristics, background, and experience you bring to the table. What is it that clearly sets you apart from other candidates? Take time to workshop a solid paragraph to use as your elevator pitch or personal statement.
This pitch should include key professional experiences that made you who you are today, a personal story about how you fit the role seamlessly, and an understanding of your core values. Employers want to know you’re a competent professional, but they also want to know that you have a personality that will mesh well with the organization’s culture.
Tip #4: Partner With a Recruiter To Perfect Your Personal Brand
Recruiters work with thousands of candidates and employers each year to pair together perfect matches. Because they are often experts at personal branding themselves, they can provide you with invaluable insight into what employers are looking for in a personal brand.
Consider partnering with a recruiter who is willing to provide objective feedback and subject matter expertise. This will ensure you’re putting your best foot forward. Looking for additional resources that will help you create long-term career success? Be sure to review The Growing Importance of Soft Skills in the Workplace to learn more about the soft skills that employers desire most in today’s business environment.