Whether you have worked in marketing for many years, or are just starting out in your career, learning how to make your resume stand out in a sea of other qualified marketing applicants is a valuable skill to have. We understand it can be hard to condense your whole work experience onto a resume, and it can be hard to know what the best approach is.
With that in mind, here are some valuable tips to ensure you land your next marketing job.
1. Include a Cover Letter
Writing a cover letter for every job you apply to can start to feel like a chore, but that extra effort is going to pay off. A study conducted by a national resume writing service, ResumeGo, indicated that including a cover letter is advantageous for all job hunters. In fact, 59% of the hiring managers surveyed in their study responded that they read covers letters because they reveal valuable insights about applicants.
Marketing can be a competitive industry, as there are many professionals with similar backgrounds and skillsets. Including a cover letter can be an opportunity for you to get creative and showcase what sets you apart from other candidates. Marketing is an industry that is all about being creative, so your cover letter should also embody that sentiment. Take the time to personalize the wording to match the open position. 61% of of recruiters stated they felt it was “very important” to avoid using a generic cover letter.
2. Learn to Market Yourself
It might seem obvious, but a good marketer should be able to market themselves! Your goal should be to sell the hiring manager on your past experiences and work so that they are extremely motivated to hire you. Be proud of your skills and abilities on your resume. You want a hiring manager to walk away from reading your resume feeling extremely confident that they know what you do and that you know how to do your work well.
3. Link to your Past Work
Depending on what kind of marketing background you have, you may need to put together a portfolio of your past projects and experiences and link to it on your resume. This is especially important for anyone applying to a job on the more creative side of marketing, as hiring managers will want to be able to get a taste of your style. For positions in graphic design, writing, or web development, a portfolio is typically required as part of the application process. This should be a good thing, as a portfolio allows you to highlight your best work and showcase your diverse range of skills. In the increasingly digital age, it is advantageous if you have your portfolio easily accessible online.
4. Make your Proficiencies Clear
Within the marketing industry, there are tons of different career specializations. Inside of a marketing department, there might be someone with a strong art background who works as a graphic designer, and another person who specializes in programmatic ad buying. While they are both under the marketing umbrella, the skill set involved for each is wildly different!
Make sure to clarify what kind of marketing you have done in the past, and list any programs, software, or certifications you have experience using. In general, it is an advantage to have knowledge with programs like Google Analytics, a blogging software, content management system, and various social media platforms.
5. Include Your Social Media Platforms
If you are a self-proclaimed social-media guru, it would make a whole lot of sense to showcase your own social media as an example of your work – right? If you have a Twitter or Instagram following that you’ve used for past marketing jobs, it’s a huge boost to include these things on the top of your resume right below your name.
6. Utilize LinkedIn
LinkedIn is a wonderful tool to take advantage of during your job search, as it is another platform where job hunters and hiring teams can connect. A lot of companies use LinkedIn as a job board, so you have a good chance of finding new opportunities. LinkedIn also has a helpful search tool that allows you to search for specific job listings in your area. For example, you can enter your specific job parameters into it such as “brand managers in Cleveland.” LinkedIn also will indicate how much of a match a specific job is based on your skillset.
7. Quantifiable Marketing Results Will Impress
Marketing as a business function exists to help companies sell their product or service. The biggest way to impress the person reading your interview is to show how effective your past work has been. Hiring managers will be very impressed if they see you have included actual statistics and data on your resume.
This might sound complicated, but it shouldn’t be. Assuming you have past work or internship experience, think back to the campaigns you worked on. Some of the metrics most often used in marketing return on ad spend (ROAS), total social reach, and incremental sales or visits are driven. Everyone’s past results will look a little different depending on the type of company and industry you previously worked in, but citing this information is guaranteed to impress a hiring manager. Not only will they be able to tell you are an outstanding marketer whose work makes a difference, but it gives credibility to your resume that you can speak the marketing language.
8. Showcase Your Personality
Marketing is a very collaborative industry, and you should be prepared to work in group settings and spend a lot of your day working side by side with your teammates. Depending on what type of marketing you do, you may also find yourself in a client-facing role, which requires you to be able to socialize well with others. Hiring managers for marketing positions want to ensure the people they hire for these roles will do well in social settings and have personalities that will reflect well on the company. The best way to showcase this on your resume is to add in a line or two about hobbies or interests you have outside of work. Not only is it a good talking point during your interview, but it allows a hiring manager to see a more personal side of each candidate.
We hope that these tips help you to really customize your resume to showcase your marketing background. When all of these strategies are used together, it should result in a very strong and competitive resume that hopefully will land you an awesome new marketing job!