You want to build a career in marketing, but in a crowded job market, getting your foot in the door can be difficult. It could be because you don’t have enough work experience, despite entry level roles typically not needing it, or other candidates have made up for their lack of experience in other areas. It’s frustrating and sometimes it’s easy to feel left behind.
Your quest for your dream graduate job doesn’t need to be an endless search with little progress. One thing you must do is to keep things fresh and seek experience to better yourself and be more competitive.
1. Make yourself get noticed.
If you want to work in marketing, why not market yourself creatively? Show initiative and you may be surprised in with the interviews you start getting. My efforts helped me get far into the interview process for at companies I never thought would give me a second look – companies like Sony Computer Entertainment Europe and the property investment firm, British Land.
One manager surprised me, when he said that in all his years in his role, he’d never seen a CV and cover letter combination like mine and that was a big part his decision to interview me in a junior role, which they never considered interviewing candidates without experience before.
Even if you don’t get the job, it’s the things like that which tells you employers do appreciate different ways of presenting yourself – think of it as bringing a bit of life to the masses of applications they have to go through.
The big question now is: How can my job application bring me closer to my dream graduate role? You have to think like a marketer and think outside the box. It’s also about showing balance, because something excessive could just come off as noise to the hiring manager. Show off your skills in the best way possible and start to think of your CV as a portfolio, rather than a list of your qualifications and employment history.
2. Write for an audience
How you ask? A blog would be a good idea. Not only would it give you experience in content creation and using WordPress, but you can also use it to practice digital marketing techniques like search engine optimisation or social media or email marketing techniques to increase your audience.
3. Teach yourself how to use graphic editing software
Learning software like Adobe Photoshop or Illustrator is an important tool to equip yourself with. Whilst no one expects you to rival graphic designers in investing your time in learning this skill, there are still many benefits. As an aspiring marketer, you must be aware of the ways well picked images can grab someone’s attention on a social media timeline and how small edits and resizes can transform them, and you may even be able to make your own graphics.
Don’t assume the hiring manager has the time to visit your site to view your work samples, so bring your work to them, and use your Photoshop and Illustrator skills as your vehicle to create a CV and portfolio that makes your content stand out.
4. Become a DigitalGrad
A complaint I often hear about recruitment agencies is that people feel they don’t do enough to help try and place them in a new job, so it’s easy to assume that’s the case for all agencies. DigitalGrads differ in three areas; the CV tips, the online job seeker profile and most importantly, the free online course to familiarise yourself with the digital marketing skills alongside interview tips. The course isn’t accredited by an official body at the moment, but completing it shows initiative and commitment to pursuing a career path in marketing. Use everything DigitalGrads teach you to elevate your CV that extra bit more.
These things may sound intimidating, but remember that the key to success is to invest in yourself. Make it your life goal build yourself up in all sorts of ways, be it with transferrable skills, like those outlined, taking courses or even something as simple as taking up a new hobby. Well-rounded people are valued in any field, and in the modern and fast-moving marketing industry – it’s essential.
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