I was recently let go from my beloved company, along with 15% of my teammates.
Pow. That stinks.
Still, you pick yourself up and start deciding what comes next. You look on indeed.com and LinkedIn for jobs, and you start reaching out to former contacts to let them know of your job search.
But have you given much thought to the “inbound marketing” involved with promoting yourself so that people will find you, and when they do, they’ll be wowed by what they find? Just like businesses want to be found on the internet, so do people for various reasons – to book speaking engagements, to take on consulting gigs, and yes – to find jobs.
I’ve been thinking a lot about this lately, so I jotted down a few notes to help anyone else get started on their own personal brand.
- OWN YOUR NAME. Let’s say your name is Jean Tarmac. Go to GoDaddy.com and type in your name “jeantarmac.” You’ll see that owning your own name is super easy and cheap. Buy it!! You never know what you’ll want to do with it. Let’s say you have a common name; i.e., Jane Smith. You can just about guarantee that URL won’t be available to purchase. Just add in your middle name in your search – that’ll increase the odds that you’ll find a URL suited for you.
- ROUTE YOUR NEW URL TO LINKEDIN. Now that you own www.jeantarmac.com, forward this URL to your LinkedIn profile.
- START A WORDPRESS WEBSITE. Although this is a tiny bit more advanced, it’s not that difficult to build your own website with WordPress. You can put up basic information, like an overview of your skillset and personality, a copy of your resume, and if you’re feeling really daring, you can start writing your own blog posts, to start showcasing your thought leadership on topics related to the field in which you want a job.
- PAY FOR A GOOD HEADSHOT. You’ll need this for LinkedIn and for your new website. No cropped-out iPhone photos here. Get a headshot expert – it’s well worth the money.
- OPTIMIZE YOUR RESUME. Make sure that the most popular keywords used in your industry are used liberally in your resume. The resume game has changed; recruiters now have access to software that can search all the resumes they receive for specific keywords and phrases. Make sure you show up in those searches.
Hopefully, some of this advice I’m giving YOU will also help ME in my job search! I’d love to know in the comments below if there are things you’ve done to build your own personal brand that have gotten you some attention in your job hunt.