Whether you’re approaching graduation or in need of a career change, there are many ways to market yourself for your job search. It’s no longer as simple as perfecting your resume and writing a detailed cover letter. That’s always going to be important, but in the digital age, your personal brand is everywhere and it’s not hard to find. What does this mean? Employers have instant access to get to know you on a level deeper than what you’ve curated on paper. This online transparency can either make it easier or harder to get your foot in the door for an interview.
A clean reputation is no easy feat, especially for millenials whose online presence often includes years of their lives. According to the American Press Institute, the first generation of digital natives 26 and under, entered high school with a social media presence. While some may consider growing up with social media to be an advantage, there’s no road map to navigating the digital world.
Here are three tips to help establish your personal brand.
1.Clean Up Your Social
First things first, take a long hard look at your social media accounts. Your personal and professional life are not so easily separated in this day and age. It’s been found that 80% of employers Google job candidates before even beginning the interview process. Before you send out an application, seriously ask yourself if you like what you see when you search your online presence. If the answer is no, then a prospective employer will likely be thinking the same. A simple Google search can determine whether or not an employer takes your resume seriously. Go beyond simply activating all available privacy settings on your accounts. Take the time to comb through your post history, and question whether or not something could negatively impact the professional persona you’re trying to convey. If there’s any doubt, get rid of it.
2.Broadcast Your Brand
Begin developing your personal brand by identifying who you are, your interests, and where you’re trying to go. Once you figure that out, share it. Be as active on LinkedIn as you are on social sites like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. It’s easy to share a snapshot of your dog or the sunset on your evening walk; but actively sharing (or writing) articles relevant to the top trends in your industry, shows employers your dedicated interest and passion to your career. LinkedIn is a digital resume that doesn’t follow the standard resume guidelines and requirements. Job seekers have the power to continuously update, elaborate, and personalize their profile in real time. Take every opportunity to broadcast your latest achievements, and share your favorite content to an extended field of prospects. Marketing yourself right can lead to job opportunities coming to you.
3. Show Up
You’ve established your personal brand online, and now you’ve got an interview. What you choose to wear is the “packaging” on the brand that you’ve marketed throughout this process. Millenials are pioneering a time where relaxed work culture and casual dress are at an all time high. Set yourself apart from the competition, and show up looking your best down to the smallest details. Bear in mind that anything you wear should become a part of you, and not distract from you.
Ladies, take the time to make sure your nails are in good shape. Trimmed and manicured nails paired with a clear or neutral polish is the way to go. This shows your attention to detail and emphasis on professionalism. There’s a time and place for fun colors and glitter, and a job interview is not it.
Men, take the time to make sure you’re either clean shaven, or your facial hair is well groomed. Your face is literally the “face” of your personal brand. Avoid irritation and redness by using high quality shaving products designed to ensure a smooth shave. Look good and you’ll give yourself an extra boost of confidence.
It’s no secret that social media and the digital world have changed the way we market ourselves. Millennials have grown up in an era where information is shared in an instant. What’s key is to make sure that how you portray yourself online, both personally and professionally, are in sync. Remain authentic to yourself and you’ll solidify a persuasive individual brand that translates seamlessly online to your in person interview.