Thursday, March 12, 2009

Using video as a distinct advantage in your job search

A video bio is an important tool in your career marketing toolkit. Your on-camera ‘pitch’ is a way to present important soft skills like communication style, overall presence, attitude and energy, relate ability and professionalism whether you are in the job market, looking to promote your business or trying to build your profile. At the end of the day, people connect with people and video is a great way to express your whole self online.

Tips for using video online in your job search

1. Be sure to highlight your interests. Just out of school and looking for your first job you won’t have a lot of experience to rely on. Employers are looking to see leadership potential, ability to perform well in a team environment, energy and commitment. Sitting on college committees, volunteer work in the community, sports and other recreational interests all demonstrate a well rounded individual who makes time to develop all her skills.

2. Emphasize your achievements in high school and college. Did you graduate at the top of your class? Have you won any awards? Were you nominated for something by your peers? Did you take on an interesting project that had a great outcome?

3. Make it relevant. The employer doesn’t want to see the same video resume that every other employer is seeing. They want it tailored for them so be sure to translate your strengths into meaningful employment benefits. For example, highlight a specific skill that you have that can be immediately applied.

4. Share your ideas. Bring something specific to the table that shows that you have done your homework and you really want to work there. It demonstrates initiative and confidence.

5. Be confident on camera even if you are not. The key benefit of a video resume is that you can edit which means you have a few ‘takes’ or chances to get it right. Employers are looking for self assured, bright individuals with great communication skills so brush up on your key messages and prepare before your shoot. Make it conversational and not too scripted but make sure your best you comes across.

What are the don'ts of video bios ?

1. A videoBIO is not a video resume. It is a tool that will augment a resume and get your soft skills and communication style across. Keep it punchy and not more than 3 minutes in length.

2. Don’t submit a home grown, handycam version of your video resume to a potential employer. Employers are leery of the source of videos and the way they are submitted. Invest in a professionally shot videoBIO that comes from a credible source and is hosted on a webpage that can be easily viewed without downloading.

In this market climate it is more important than ever before to take control of and manage your online reputation.

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