Personal Branding For Dummies
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Before you start interviewing, write, memorize, and practice presenting a marketing pitch — a personal commercial about yourself. Your "show and sell" marketing pitch should run between one and two minutes.

Think for a few seconds about what a commercial does. It focuses on selling a product in a blink of time. It grabs your attention fast with information of interest to you. Then it tells why you should buy the product. Your personal commercial works exactly the same way by enabling you to:

  • Grab employers’ interest with a confident statement about yourself and your value related to the job you want.

  • Support that statement with specific facts.

  • Sell employers on why they should hire you instead of someone else.

Memorize your personal commercial

You do need to memorize your personal commercial. Practice until it sounds natural. Just like an actor, you need to learn your script and deliver it in character. No stumbling. No ad-libbing.

You may think all this memorization might make you sound as canned as a tin of tuna. Maybe. But which would you prefer — to sound a bit stiff or to flounder about as though you have no idea why you’re there or why you’re right for the job?

Depending on your experience level and the job you’re trying to land, your personal commercial can include any or all of the following information:

  • Competencies, skills, and experience for the job

  • Academic degree

  • Positions of leadership

  • Specific job training

  • Date of expected graduation (if applicable)

  • Honors or achievements

  • General goals

  • A branding statement

Sample personal commercials

You can create one all-purpose personal commercial and edit it on your feet to make it fit the requirements of the position you seek. Or if you’re not too hot at instant editing, prepare several different personal commercials aimed at related but different types of jobs. Following are two sample personal commercials.

A prospective new graduate applying for a Web news site start-up might use a personal commercial like this:

Your need for a Web editor who can handle breaking news deadlines is just what I want and am qualified to handle. Working and attending school full time taught me to organize and prioritize for superior time management skills — I wouldn’t have succeeded without mastering these skills. Considering the demand of deadlines, I see multitasking skills as especially important in a journalism career.
I will graduate in May from the University of Kansas with a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism. I was a feature writer on the school’s Web site and the student newspaper. I would have been named editor, but I worked throughout my education to pay for 80 percent of my school expenses. At the same time, I managed to maintain a high GPA, so I expect to graduate cum laude.

A seasoned manager’s personal commercial highlights accomplishments and experience:

I am an experienced line manager with extensive knowledge in team-building that ranges from organizing project teams to informally encouraging people to work together. I’ve developed solid skills in hiring and retaining employees.
I also have incorporated technological advances into a company where such advances require a significant amount of employee retraining.
Additionally, my track record is substantial in major presentations to clients, which has led to as much as an 87 percent increase in product adoption from the year I took over.
In summary, I believe I have the required skills and experience you seek for this position, as well as the technological savvy and a positive attitude toward implementing change.

About This Article

This article is from the book:

About the book author:

Susan Chritton is a master personal brand strategist, executive career coach, and master career counselor. She guides professionals looking to present their authentic selves to the world through personal branding. Learn more at

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