You’ve got your new brand for your new career or freelance business. Now you need to make sure that employers, recruiters, clients or customers can find it. This post will show you how.
It’s the finale in our blog series, Reinventing Your Career During COVID, where we cover the basics of changing careers during a challenging time, including:
– Why now could be the best time to change your career.
– Where to pick up new career skills without taking on massive debt.
– How to line up financial and practical support as you launch your new career.
– How to build your new personal brand.
– How to create your personal portfolio website to reach employers or clients.
– How to promote yourself in your new field so you can find the work you want. (You’re here!)
Here are our top tips for using your personal brand to connect with the people who can help you launch your new career.
1. Post about your projects, industry and inspirations
Definitely share your projects and wins on your social media and blog, but don’t leave it at that. You can share your take on current trends in your industry to show that you’re paying attention and coming up with ideas.
You can (and should) also post about the people and projects that inspire you. Everyone loves a shoutout, and people love to share flattering content that other people post about them.
2. Make video tutorials to show clients and employers what you know
For example, real estate agent Stylish D built his Sew Bro career with video tutorials that teach guys how to convert discount-store clothes into stuff that fits as well as high-end menswear.
What started as one video about altering a shirt is now a monetized channel with paid subscription tiers, merch and contact information for business inquiries.
3. Write a press release for your new business
If you’re launching a new freelance career, local business or online store, you can (and should) alert the media. You can use our instructions and template for writing an effective press release.
One addition: If you have a short video, infographic or high-resolution images of your business space or products, link to or embed them in your press release. Editors love ready-to-go media they can add to a page to make it more interesting and shareable.
Send your press release to outlets that your audience follows, like the local newspaper and TV stations, online trade publications or your social media audience. Share it on your portfolio website’s blog, too.
4. Keep your portfolio website up to date
If you’ve been following this series, you may already have your portfolio website up and running to show potential employers or clients what you offer. Now, you need to update it often, so it keeps working for you.
5. At least once a week, you may want to update:
- Your content. Add a project, a testimonial or a blog post so your site seems fresh to Google’s web crawlers and so your visitors have a reason to keep coming back.
- Your plugins, theme and WordPress version, if updates are available.
- Your site backup. Not using an automated backup tool? Then you need to back up your site before and after each weekly update, so you don’t risk losing your content.
6. Collect and share testimonials, recommendations and reviews
Most of us check reviews on everything now, because we want to know what other people think of a service or product before we buy. Testimonials and recommendations for your work serve the same purpose, by showing employers and clients that real people benefit from working with you.
The most compelling testimonials are from current or past clients, employers or customers. But you can also collect testimonials from instructors in your career-related courses, mentors, apprenticeship or internship supervisors, and people you’ve done pro bono work for to build your portfolio.
If your new online store has reviews, share those, too. Use our guide to requesting and using testimonials to get started.
7. Plug in to the right networks
There’s never been an easier time to connect with people in your industry, local business community and audience, with options like:
- Industry groups on social media
- Alumni groups and student job placement centers
- Local chambers of commerce
- Professional organizations in your industry
- Check out our top tips for small business networking.
8. Find the right recruiters
List yourself as open to work on LinkedIn and you may get inundated with messages from recruiters. If you want to work with a recruiter, though, you should find one that understands your industry, tells you clearly how they get paid (it’s usually by employers), and is willing to spend some time answering your questions about what they can do for you.
The best way to find a reliable recruiter? Ask your network for recommendations.
9. Go beyond the big job boards
Indeed and Glassdoor are great sites for general searches, but the big job sites aren’t the only ones to check. Depending on your industry, you may want to check out:
- AngelList if your dream is to work for a startup.
- Dice for tech jobs.
- Dribbble if you’re in graphic design.
- FlexJobs if you want to work remotely.
- Idealist for nonprofit careers.
- JournalismJobs for, yep, journalism.
- USAJOBS if you want to work for the government.
- Google “job boards for” and your industry and see what’s waiting for you.
10. Make it easy for people to reach you
What’s the best way for interested recruiters, employers or clients to get in touch with you? Text, email, DM, something else?
Whatever it is, put that contact information in your social profiles, your email signature, and on your portfolio website and check those inboxes at least once a day so you can get back to people fast.
That’s a wrap on our reinventing your career during COVID series. But we’re always here for you with helpful blog tips, tutorial videos and webinars to help you build the work life you want.