The Career Development Process: Marketing Yourself
The stages of your career are constantly evolving. From the time you first enter the professional arena, until the day you retire, you’ll always be growing within your career. That’s why it’s important to properly market yourself, and facilitate that process, so that you can position yourself for success.
Whether you're just beginning your professional journey or you're in the middle of it, there are certain things you can do in order to better market yourself. Let’s take a closer look at some of these techniques that will help you stand out from the competition.
Update Your Resume
Regardless of whether you’re a seasoned professional or an entry-level employee, it’s always a good idea to keep your resume fresh. This doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll have to spend a ton of time switching things around, but you’ll definitely want to update your current credentials.
As you begin to freshen up your resume, ask yourself whether or not the changes are relevant to your career goals. By doing so, you’ll be able to better align your resume with where you want to go professionally.
Be sure to also pay attention to the overall look of your resume. Depending on the industry you’re working in, a resume facelift may be in your future. The Creative Market is a great resource for resume templates, and it offers some great ideas if you think your resume is due for an aesthetic overhaul.
Craft Your Cover Letter
In today’s highly competitive job market, it’s imperative to set yourself apart from the crowd. One way to do so is through an effective cover letter. The cover letter is one of the first things a potential employer will read, and it gives you an opportunity to outline your value proposition to their company.
Just like your resume, your cover letter should showcase skills that are relevant to the particular company or industry you’re pursuing. It’s also a good idea to show that you’ve done your research on the company. Be sure to highlight your understanding of the company’s needs, and show employers that you’re the candidate who can fulfill those needs.
Remember, you’re selling yourself in your resume and cover letter. Don’t go overboard with the sales pitch, but you’ll want to put some salesmanship into your presentation. If you’re stuck on how to get started, visit Monster.com and take a look at their cover letter templates. This step will hopefully get you started on the right foot.
We live in an era where we’re more connected than ever before. The Internet is a major contributor to this connectedness, and it’s a great resource that brings together job seekers and employers at the click of a mouse.
There are multiple online platforms that you can leverage to market yourself to potential employers. The most popular platform to date is LinkedIn, not to mention the most effective as well. LinkedIn gives you the opportunity to not only promote yourself, but the technology allows you to research, view, and connect with companies and industry leaders like never before. A recent article by Tech Crunch stated that LinkedIn now has 300 million registered users worldwide. That’s a lot of potential connections.
LinkedIn offers an array of marketing tools for people looking to build their personal brand and get noticed. In addition to creating a LinkedIn profile, you now have the opportunity to actually create content, a.k.a. blog posts, and publish it on their platform through LinkedIn Pulse. This extremely powerful tool is helpful when it comes to marketing yourself and building your LinkedIn presence.
When you take the necessary steps to market yourself, you’re setting yourself up for future connections. These connections could ultimately lead to new opportunities and a career change. If you put some time into your personal marketing efforts, you’ll more than likely experience a positive transformation in your career.
For more information on how to search for jobs and plan your career, be sure to visit Ashford University’s Career Services.
Written by Ben Cummings, Digital Marketing Specialist for Bridgepoint Education.