Marketing is defined as ‘the action or business of promoting and selling products or services’. It can help a company to drive awareness, make sales, or promote an event. If we think of ourselves as a single business, marketing is something we should all be doing when attending interviews.
As experts in all forms of promotional activity, here are our five ways to help you market yourself at interview.
1. Start the marketing before the interview
If you see an advert promoting a product that has spelling mistakes and is full of misleading statements, it’s highly likely it won’t have the desired effect. Whether you apply for a job by sending a CV or by completing an application form, it should be error free. That means double checking for typos and ensuring what you have written is correct.
Today, it also means giving your social media a once over. More and more companies are looking at the Facebook, Instagram and Twitter profiles of potential employees before inviting to interview. Have a look at what can be seen publicly and if there’s something that could show you in a negative light, remove it.
2. Make a good first impression
Office wear is a lot more relaxed that it used to be, but that doesn’t mean turning up to an interview in jeans, trainers and a hoodie will make a good first impression, even if that dress code would be acceptable if you were to get the job. Dress a level up to what the current employees are wearing, but stop short of a ballgown or tuxedo!
Other quick ways to make a good first impression include:
- Don’t be late – 5-10 minutes early is ideal
- Make eye contact
- Have a firm handshake
- Sit and stand up straight
3. Do your research
Before any marketing project is started, research is carried out, and you should do the same. You don’t need to know a year by year history of the company, but pick out some key points and successes. The same goes for the job role. Make sure you are fully aware of what is in the job description and the type of person the company is looking for. Pre-prepare some examples of what you have contributed to a project that match what is included in the job description, such as how you managed a crisis, handled a job from start to finish, or demonstrated good customer service, as this will allow you to market yourself as the solution.
Carrying out research will also help you to craft unique questions, which could help you stand out from your rivals. These could include what the company is currently working on, or why they believe they are better than their competitors.
4. Be relaxed
Interviews can be daunting and many of us find it difficult to talk about ourselves and shout about our achievements. One way to help you feel relaxed is to remember that, yes, you are being interviewed, but you are also the interviewer. You need to find out about the company to ensure it’s a good fit for you, as much as your interviewer is trying to find out if you are a good fit for them. Remind yourself that ‘it’s just a conversation’.
5. Make a good second impression
You may be asked to return for a second interview or spend a day/few hours completing tasks you would be expected to do if you were successful. As well as giving you a chance to highlight the skills and experience you have, it’s also a great opportunity to promote yourself to your potential new colleagues. This no time to become a shrinking violet – engage in conversations, be friendly, and, if possible, help solve a problem.