Effective personal branding doesn’t just happen overnight. You have to have a plan in place if you want to maximize your personal brand and career.
Job seekers who build effective personal brands carefully plan a strategy to help make themselves become noticed by employers and recruiters. A personal marketing plan consists of creating a personal mission statement, analyzing your current situation as a job seeker, goals, objectives, opportunities, and a strategy for landing a job.
Although many job seekers don’t create personal marketing plans, it’s a great tool for helping you create an outline of what you want to accomplish as a job seeker and goals you would like to meet within the next year. Whether you’re looking for your first job or wanting to advance your career, a personal marketing plan can definitely help you accomplish your goals and meet your career objectives.
If you’re wondering how a personal marketing plan can maximize your job search and personal brand, follow these five simple steps to help you outline your career goals:
1. Define your mission statement.
Creating your mission statement is the first step of your personal marketing plan. This is where you define your mission as a professional, career objectives, and personal goals.
Your mission statement should also answer two questions: Who am I as a professional? What do I need to do to accomplish my career goals and objectives? These are fundamental questions that must be answered before you can begin your job search.
If you want to maximize your job search and personal brand, your mission statement should also include a goal or objective that explains how you are at a competitive advantage as a job seeker. This includes qualities you believe that set yourself apart from the rest of the job seekers.
2. Explore your strengths and weaknesses.
Similar to a marketing plan, you will also do an analysis of your strengths and weaknesses. This is important for you to do as a job seeker because it will help you discover what opportunities best fit your needs and areas where you can improve as a professional. By exploring your strengths and weaknesses, you will also learn how your experience aligns with job seekers you are competing with.
To evaluate your strengths, take a look at your experience, hard and soft skills, and character. These are values that will help you in promoting your personal brand. Next, when you evaluate your weaknesses, look at what you can do to improve and help yourself stand out. Determine if there are any particular skills you need to develop and things you need to change about your personal branding strategy. By doing this, you will be able to improve your competitive advantage and improve as a professional.
3. Identify opportunities that fit your career needs.
After you define your strengths and weaknesses, it’s time to identify opportunities for you as a job seeker. You should already have an idea of what type of job fits your needs, wants, and characteristics, so this should make it a little easier for you to find opportunities.
When identifying opportunities that fit your needs, you should consider the type of work environment you excel in, the type of industry you enjoy, and the culture that fits your characteristics. By doing this, you will be able to narrow down your job search and improve your chances of connecting with professionals who can help you advance your career.
4. Implement the promotion of your personal brand.
Once you know your personal goals for your marketing plan, you’ll be able to begin promoting your personal brand. Knowing what opportunities fit your needs, you will able to have more leverage on your personal brand. When implementing self-promotion, it’s key to connect with people in your industry and share relevant content people in your networks will find valuable. You will also be able to promote your personal brand to employers and recruiters in your desired industry and position yourself for companies you’d like to work for.
5. Evaluate your job search performance.
The final step in building a marketing plan is measuring your job search success. You can create these metrics through how many connections you’ve made through social networking, interviews, and even the job offers you received. It’s important to evaluate yourself as a professional so you know what works for you and how you can improve. If you aren’t building contacts or landing interviews, then it’s a sure-fire sign you may need to reevaluate your objectives. On the other hand, if you are finding success with your personal brand, then you’re definitely on the right track with your personal marketing plan.
As you can see, creating a personal marketing plan is a great way to help you define your goals and position yourself as a professional. You will be able to maximize the power of your personal brand, build your professional network, and even land jobs that fit your career needs. By focusing on your personal goals and creating objectives for your job search, you will be able to put yourself at an advantage and stand out amongst your competition in the job market.
Have you created a personal marketing plan for your personal brand? How has it helped you grow as a professional?
Heather R. Huhman is a career expert, experienced hiring manager, and founder & president of Come Recommended, a content marketing and digital PR consultancy for job search and human resources technologies. She is also the instructor of Find Me A Job: How To Score A Job Before Your Friends, author of Lies, Damned Lies & Internships (2011) and #ENTRYLEVELtweet: Taking Your Career from Classroom to Cubicle (2010), and writes career and recruiting advice for numerous outlets.