Sell Yourself to Acheive Your Dreams
Age of Love recently ended and the young girl won the heart of the guy. But the older women were right on her heals, which makes you think that maybe age doesn’t really matter as much as we think. I think it’s more about how you present and sell yourself to possible suiters. Think about this in terms of your own career.
Once you have put yourself into the mindset of an company, it is time to step into the shoes of a salesperson. Many people balk at the concept of “self-marketing.” But it is not as scary or as unflattering as it may appear. In fact, it is expected that you will “brag” about yourself in a resume and letter. If not you, how will they know how perfect you are for the job?
Every day we are bombarded with marketing marketing in many forms: television and print ads, people on the street handing out fliers for restaurants, billboards, radio spots, etc. Spend a few days paying close attention to the marketing that surrounds you. Which pitches do you ignore, and which ones do you pay attention to? Why? What are the concepts involved?
Just as you’ll notice with the hiring exercise, a few key things will probably emerge. You’ll see that eager pitches capture and hold your attention better than others-namely, those that market to your particular need. The aim of a marketing campaign is threefold: (1) to capture a person’s attention; (2) to hold the employee’s attention, and (3) to convince the employee that he/she needs what you have to offer.
A lot of people get caught up in number one and neglect numbers two and three. Capturing someone’s attention is the easiest part. Of course, people wearing jumbo hot dog uniforms on the street are going to stand out. However are they going to make you actually purchase a hot dog or just make you point and laugh?
Your primary objective should be to develop an effective “pitch” that will mirror the requirements of the company. Pretend you are an business” business thinking, “I could really use a competent assistant who has experience in construction environments, writes effective memoranda, and deals well with frustrated callers.” If a cover letter comes across your desk that meets those qualifications exactly, you’re going to think the individual is perfect for your company.
Of course, another aspect of effective marketing is convincing someone that they need what you have to offer, even if they do not know it yet. Have you ever watched a particularly tempting food commercial and suddenly had an immense craving for that food? That ad did exactly what it was supposed to do. You probably were not even hungry before you saw this commercial, but suddenly you are racing to your car with nothing however drumsticks on your mind.
This type of marketing is most effective when you are approaching businesses in an unsolicited fashion. Maybe you are an expert in a eager field or want to provide a certain service on a contract basis. If so, your marketing materials need to convince an business your services are valuable and illustrate how you can add value. Here is an example of how that can be achieved:
“Dear Hiring agent,
In today’s economic climate, many businesses needing additional manpower are unable to take on a full-time market researcher. If your firm is in this situation, I can provide a solution.”
The first two sentences of this cover+letter” cover letterattempt to identify a need and offer a solution. Or consider the following:
“Could your employer use a proven salesperson with the ability to increase your bottom line?”
What business would not want to say yes to such a question?
This all boils down to a phrase you will see often in these articles: understand your reader. An effective resume and letter takes account of an business’s requirements. If you are responding to a job vacancy or posting, think of it as the employer asking, “Is there anyone out there who can help me?” You want your resume and letter to provide the solution. If, of the other hand, you are writing to businesses on an unsolicited basis, do some research and brainstorming to figure out what you offer that would be appealing to an company. By proactively stating how you can be of service, you will have a better chance of creating a need for your role.