The first question is: do I have the key attributes for a career in marketing?
There are some skills that are important to a marketer, no matter which type of marketing they specialise in:
- Can you communicate a message verbally and in writing clearly and concisely and build great relationships with people?
- Are you analytically minded enough to dissect research and come up with solutions to that data? And then relate findings to how that will impact on your product/client?
- Are you creative and good at solving problems?
Once you’ve worked out if you’re right for a role in marketing, here are tips to make your CV stand out:
Education – Gaining as many qualifications as you can related to sales, marketing, business or even technology will help your credentials. Don’t just think about standard qualifications like degrees, think about short courses on computer skills like Excel or online marketing like SEO.
Agency Work – A good place to start out is an agency but they are very competitive and cut-throat so if you don’t quickly make the grade you will be out. In agencies if you make the grade and are open to taking criticism and work hard then they are a great learning ground.
Know Your Sector – The sooner you become specialised the better. It could be, for example, that you start in a non-marketing related role so you can learn the business sector you’re interested in devoting your time to. This is the best way to learn about the area, as sector knowledge is imperative when it comes to marketing.
Experience – Yes, you always hear ‘get experience’ but how do you get it. There are a few things you can do:
Maybe look for a small business where you can do some voluntary work and practice different marketing approaches. This way your CV will show you have experience and you can discuss in interviews what approaches worked and why.
Sales experience is also useful as sales and marketing go hand-in-hand. Think about what you learnt about your customer and how you connected with them while working in that part-time sales assistant job. Also if you don’t tick all the requirements in the job advert then take some time to write a detailed cover letter stating why you think you’d be perfect for the role. It’s amazing how many job applicants don’t personalise their CVs.
Market Yourself – You’re applying for marketing roles. If you can’t sell yourself then how would a future employer think you could sell their product? Create a blog or/and a website as a showcase for yourself. You will pick up very useful skills by going through the ideas, design, maintenance and marketing of your project as well as showing you know what you’re doing.
Promote your profile via social media and ensure future employers can only see what you want them to see online. Manage your social media profiles so the privacy settings are appropriate to gaining employment. Finally, network through social media: think of yourself as a brand, and follow the companies and people you want to be involved with. Connect with the right Recruitment Consultants as well – they know their business and will be able to help you find your dream job.