So how do you go about marketing yourself to employers? How do you go about marketing anything to anyone? Simple.
You just have to identify selling points, decide on a method by which to communicate them to your target market and compose that communication effectively.
What, you want more?
Oh, OK then….
Identifying your selling points to begin marketing yourself.
Write a list.
It’s best to get it all onto paper so you can sit down and look over it afterwards (and use it to write your CV). There is no point in knowing in your head what you are good at. So write a list.
Your selling points, or strengths are what you will be judged on (you also have to use them to overshadow your weaknesses).
Selling points are ideally unique, but you need to cover the basics that most employers look for (e.g. communication skills, team player, reliable, etc – you’ve probably seen all that stuff on job adverts). So use these basic skills as a starting point.
When you’ve got the basics out of the way, you need to concentrate on your unique skills. What sets you apart from the crowd? Why should the employer hire you over the hundreds of other candidates? What are your strengths?
I can’t tell you what they are. Ask your friends. Ask your teachers or tutors. Ask your family. Ask your employer (don’t telling them you’re leaving though…).
For me, my unique selling points were these:
- Good with computers (quick typist, fast learner, fair amount of experience).
- Good with customers (I have a good concept of marketing and plenty of customer service experience).
- Good working in teams (I get on well with people).
- Good looking (I don’t put that on the CV though – that’s a small bonus for the interview ).
When you have a list of your selling points you are one step closer to marketing yourself to your potential employer.
How to market your skills
There are a limited number of ways of marketing your skills to an employer and I have covered different areas of this subject in other articles, so read these and come back! (I’m not going to repeat myself!)
First you could find a job to apply for:
Or you could send your CV off to recruitment agencies:
- Basic Resumes are detrimental to your career
- Common resume mistakes
- Free CV templates – the way to go?
- How to assess your CV
- Use the power of letters to land the right job!
- Recruiters top 20 CV pet peeves
- Top Tips on CV Writing
- Writing an accomplishment driven resume
It is through these channels that you will be communicating your skills, either through your CV or an application form (and if you are lucky – an interview, an assessment centre, or some further form of testing).
Composing your communication effectively
There are a few main points to remember, as again, I cannot tell you the best way to market yourself.
Firstly, when writing your CV, filling in an application form or attending an interview, the main thing to remember is to focus on your selling points (remember the list you wrote?). These are what an employer will base his or her decision on, so you must now play your aces!
Next, try to relate to what the employer has asked for in the advert. If there are specific skills you don’t have enough experience in, then explain why the skills you do have are even more important (and it doesn’t harm to exaggerate your experience slightly – don’t lie, but don’t under sell yourself).
Finally remember – 9 times out of 10 you won’t get the job. It’s not the end of the world – do get some feedback if you can and definitely use it to build on for the future. Live and learn!
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