In order to gain a competitive position in the job market, you need to think like a marketer for your personal brand. Your resume reflects your brand and is your advertisement to the job market. It helps to articulate your value proposition, which will attract potential employers. Here are some ideas to incorporate basic marketing strategies into your resume.
Tell your story. Use clear and concise messaging as a way to demonstrate your unique value proposition to future employers. Use language that is simple to understand and highly relevant to the reader. Write an impactful summary statement that defines your core competencies and the business value you create.
Your objective is to get hired for a specific position. Any other objective statement can be too pie in the sky or confuse a potential employer. In many cases, objective statements work against potential candidates because their career objective is not aligned with the position they are seeking. It is okay not to include one.
Use bullet points as a way to demonstrate business results and ROI that you have created throughout your career. Provide quantifiable data. Do this versus using bullet points to list your job description. Use your resume to demonstrate what value you will add to an organization instead of providing a list or role responsibilities and tasks completed.
Think across media channels. How will you present yourself and professional information across print (your resume) and the web (LinkedIn and other social media channels). Ensure that your messaging is consistent across these media channels. There are times when a LinkedIn profile is not aligned with a resume. Something as simple as inconsistent dates of employment can negatively affect you.
Target your messaging. Think like a marketer and target your message. The norm is to have one generic resume that is used for every opportunity. Be the exception to that norm. Target your content, using experience and results that are most relevant for a specific position. Create a master document of all of your professional achievements and quantified business results to pick and choose from. Choose the information that is most relevant for a specific role and potential employer.
This rule also applies to extra-curricular activities, volunteer roles, professional associations and hobbies. Only include information that is relevant to your value proposition or the role at hand. Otherwise, leave it off of your resume.
Develop a style guide for your resume. A style guide defines brand elements and how they are applied across marketing materials. Choose a resume template and font that is clean, concise and makes your information easy to read. Avoid using busy graphics and fonts that distract from the content. Use a resume format that you can easily edit and update. Having a neatly formatted resume will demonstrate your level of professionalism. If you do not have one and need ideas, there are many free samples on the internet to choose from.
Call to action. In marketing, a call to action elicits a response from the reader or target audience. Your resume will evoke a response if you properly demonstrate your value proposition, business value and relevance for a specific position. To ensure you are called or contacted, make sure that your contact information is presented clearly. Do include hyperlinks to your LinkedIn profile or portfolio site. Make it as easy as possible to contact you.
With these simple steps and ideas, you can change the approach and strategy you take when writing or updating your resume. Becoming a marketer and using your resume to message your value proposition will attract potential employers and give you a competitive edge in the job market.