Your-Resume-Isn’t-Enough

Your Resume Isn’t Enough

You need content (not only a resume) if you want to distinguish yourself

The only way to stay competitive is to stay authentic. A resume can help, but it doesn’t pain a full picture.

 

If you don’t know the answer, that’s okay. Will you learn the answer? If you don’t have the qualifications, that’s okay. How can you gain them? If you don’t have the network, that’s okay. How can you start conversations with the people you want to connect with? These are all important questions to consider.

 

In a candidate pool of over 10,000 people, there truly is only one way to stand out. You have to be able to demonstrate an ability to learn quickly and a strong work ethic. A resume can highlight these two core qualities but, content can do it better.

 

You don’t need a big audience. You don’t need a multi-media plan that covers podcast production, a vlog, and 1,000-word weekly blog posts. You do however need to take advantage of the social networks and easy-to-make website creators available today.

 

A resume is like a thumbnail, it will only showcase a small part of who you are. Content is like the thousands of pixels in an image, it will showcase a deeper level of your expertise, curiosity, interests, and most importantly—your uniqueness.

 


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The-Big-Problem

The Big Problem: Using Our Free Time To Collect New Skills

How we are using this time to grow?

The issue we are facing today is a matter of collecting the right skills. If this new free time we have in our schedule, some of us are trying to educate ourselves. Now is a great time to make our resumes better.

 

Yet, where do we start? What’s the best approach? Which skills will remain relevant in five years?

 

I suppose the only way to know is to try. Don’t overthink the process, think about a skill you’ve always wanted to learn. This skill doesn’t need to be directly applicable to your career, so long as you enjoy the process of learning it.

 

What I’ve decided to do is collect five managerial roles I would love to get in marketing, synthesize the top 5 skills required for those roles, and then find online courses for them.

 

If you’re in a marketing role and want to up your game, here are some courses I found that may be useful:

  1. Tableau – elearning.tableau.com
  2. Google Analytics – https://analytics.google.com/analytics/academy/
  3. Hubspot – https://www.hubspot.com/resources/courses
  4. Marketo – https://www.marketo.com/education/training/
  5. Zapier – https://zapier.com/learn/
  6. Demand Base – https://www.demandbase.com/resources/training-center/

 

I’m sure that there are other courses and skills that can help me grow in my marketing career, these are just the ones I’ve found common in many mid-level marketing positions. Again, we all have a lot of time on our hands. How are you going to use it to grow?

 


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job-search-2021

A New Transition: Preparing For My Job Search In 2021

Even if the event doesn’t come to pass, create action steps ahead of time

I’m afraid of my prospects when searching for a job in 2021. Just in March of 2020 alone, we saw a loss of over 700,00 jobs. Regardless of the industry, I’m certain that some of the people who were laid off were working in marketing.

 

Next year I will be competing with both new graduates, established professionals, and everyone who is just as (if not more) hungry as me for an opportunity to work for a team and to grow their brand. So the question is, “How do I position myself to stand out? How do I make myself more useful than my competition?”

 

I believe the first step in answering these two questions is to keep an abundance-mindset. Even though it seems as if there is little to go around and that jobs are and will be scarce, with enough creativity and content, I am sure I will have something to show. And that is what I need to focus on, what we should all focus on—showing our ideas, our thoughts and opinions.

 

We need to look past the resume

A resume will not be enough this year. And a resume won’t hold up against another 100 similar ones. A resume can’t hold up to an applicant tracking system that will mark it invalid if it is missing a certain number of “vital keywords.” What will hold up and stand the test of time is a personal brand that is both authentic and exciting. There’s no need to fake it till you make it, but we have to consider what is unique to us.

 

I’ll be focusing more and doubling down on my writing, since I consider it to be the skill I’m best at and best known for. Aside from other skills I have and new ones I’m adding to my tool belt, I’m also putting an emphasis on being as slow as possible. There is no need to rush my job search, rushing is how mistakes happen. If I don’t rush, I’m certain that jobs will come to me—making this process easier.

 

If I believe there is an abundance of opportunity out there, it will put my mind in a better place to find a solution to my problem. Let’s see what happens.

 


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Focus-On-Owning-The Category-A Not-So-New Approach-To-Building-Your-Personal-Brand

Focus On Owning The Category: A Not-So-New Approach To Building Your Personal Brand

Promote A Category, Not Your Name

The purpose of a slogan is to promote a brand that your prospective customer can identify with. You want the slogan and eventually your brand’s name to become so synonymous with the product or service that you’re selling, that you become generic.

 

Band-Aid is a company that sells bandages. Scotch Tape is a company that sells tape. When you hear the phrase, “Just Do It,” Nike is the first thing that comes to mind. When you hear these brands’ names, they appear to be the most generic in their categories: bandages, tape, and shoes. They own these categories.

 

These companies don’t only focus on promoting their logos, they focus on promoting the utility of their product categories. That’s what we all need to do if we are seeking to expand the reach of our personal brands. Thinking of ourselves as large corporations, it is better for us to promote the category of services rather than our brands themselves.

 

To give an explicit example, Tim Ferriss explains in  Tools of Titans: The Tactics, Routines, and Habits of Billionaires, that he focused on selling the category of Lifestyle Design. He did this so successfully that after the launch of his book, The 4-Hour Workweek, many other copycats came out of the woodwork. Now there are thousands of people who promote themselves as lifestyle designers on Youtube and Instagram.

 

Now we may not be as lucky as Tim in both owning and creating a phrase that ends up becoming a whole category of service providers, but we can learn something from his approach. Your prospective customer is being sold to every minute of every day. They aren’t only being sold to by your direct competitors, hundreds of other brands outside of your industry are also trying to get their attention.

 

Instead of doing what everyone else does and promoting your services as, “Look what I can do for you,” the better approach is, “Look what this type of service can do for you.” You come off as more educational, rather than promotional.

 

How To Implement This Idea For Yourself

I’m currently trying to own the category of copywriter. I am not the first nor will I be the last copywriter. My main challenge right now is that I am working uphill, competing with every single copywriter in the world.

 

Even if I were to hone in on a niche, that currently being product review writing, I am still in fierce competition with other copywriters who write the same type of content. The only way to distinguish my personal brand to stand out more is by modifying the title of copywriter, promoting content on why businesses need copywriters, and showcasing my expertise — what I know.

 

People only remember the top three to seven brands in a given category. We have to aim for becoming, at the bare minimum, the number three person in our field if we are going to even have a chance at having a client consider hiring us.

 

Creating content for your personal brand is only the first step in this process. While you create your online footprint, you have to constantly keep in mind, “How am I creating or owning this category?” The older and bigger the category, the more difficult it will be to do this.

 

If you’re trying to build your personal brand as a newcomer in your industry, the most accessible option will be to promote the category you are in. For the more seasoned professional, Tim Ferriss approach might be the better option. Try creating a new category and have others copy you so that you become the leader in that category by default. This is certainly harder to do but, it beats trying to stand out in a sea of other professionals who have the exact same title as you do.

 


 

I just recently finished reading The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing: Violate Them at Your Own Risk! by Al Ries & Jack Trout. Taking the ideas proposed by the authors, I wanted to know how I could actually retain the information more. I want to make the book more useful. They cover a wide history of how several companies gained prominence (or lost it) within their industries.

 

I’m taking what I’ve learned from the book and applying it to my personal brand. If you’re interested in learning more about marketing in general, I highly recommend buying this book. It’s a fast read and it is certainly an enjoyable way to spend a weekend at home.

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How-to-Get a-Job-People-Get-Paid-to-Think-Kenny-Soto

How to Get a Job in 2020

People Get Paid to Think

People pay you to save them time, make them money, and ultimately for your thoughts. Getting an employer’s attention is the main challenge to getting any kind of job in the knowledge economy. How do you stand out amongst a sea of other competitors? How can you stand out when these candidates may be more qualified and better connected than you are?

 

Speaking from my experience as a marketer, I have found that the primary factor for getting a job is mainly one of presentation. The way that I approach how I present myself starts with one question, “What thoughts am I sharing that are unique to me?

 

Everyone is unique and some of the ideas we have are also unique. However, that doesn’t mean that every idea we have is a good one. In order to create an impressive and presentable resume/CV/portfolio/profile that showcases your best thoughts and ideas requires experimentation. These experiments in how you present yourself can be done both in-person and online.

So let’s get specific. Let’s create a scenario for the budding marketer, which will have a lot of similarities to the average first-time knowledge worker. Suppose you are about to graduate college and you are seeking employment in an ad agency or a start-up. How do you get hired with no experience?

 

Finding a solution to this problem is the first challenge to tackle. The fastest solution is through using your connections. Utilize your network to find your first gig. However, this option isn’t workable for most people during the early stages of their careers. Quite often we really don’t understand the value of having a well-established network until we first start searching for our first job.

 

An alternative solution to, “How do you get hired with no experience?”, would be to hire yourself. Remember, as a knowledge worker you are ultimately going to get hired on your ability to think. You will be hired for your ability to use your thoughts, to save your team time and make them money. Why not try doing this for yourself first?

 

Now being very frank here, you shouldn’t seek to make money online or gain a million followers on a social media platform. The practice of hiring yourself is for two purposes.

  1. To see if you like doing the type of work that you are seeking to do.
  2. To get experience doing the actual work by marketing yourself, as the primary example.

The best way to measure your success when hiring yourself is by first figuring out if you are having fun. Then you must showcase what you are learning from this experiment in hiring yourself.

 

For the budding marketer, this can be done through content. A blog, vlog, or podcast will work. Additionally, you don’t need to make this content specifically about your craft (the job you want to be hired for). The content can be about anything.

 

In marketing specifically, an employer will want to see your ability to grab people’s attention. When creating something for yourself, when hiring yourself as your own marketer, consider what topics already grab your attention. As Naval Ravikant put it, “What are you obsessed with?” Start by creating content around a topic you love and then try promoting it.

 

You will begin to encounter the daily challenges that all businesses face. If you can figure out how to gain the attention of your own tribe, you will be able to showcase how you can do that for others.

 

Lastly, there is another way to gain experience when you are starting from ground zero. This approach works for anyone, especially if the idea of self-promotion puts a bad taste in your mouth. If you want to get experience, you can always become a volunteer.

 

Volunteering your time is the fastest way to get experience. Volunteering to do work for your local small businesses or a nonprofit, free of charge, will give you the experience you want. Also, it will show you if you like the work and it will build your network. With the three solutions mentioned: using your network, hiring yourself first, and volunteering, take note that they can also be done simultaneously!

 

Finding work can be hard but, it isn’t impossible. You just need to take the time to consider how your unique thoughts can make other people successful and how you can show them this, by working on your own obsession. Figure that out (or at least begin to try) and you will be well on your way to getting any job you want.


 

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