Meet Fiona, a Digital Marketing Manager in Acquisition Marketing at Scotiabank’s Digital Factory who recently completed BrainStation’s Online Live Digital Marketing Course.
With more than 400 thousand digital roles forecasted to be created by 2024 and nearly 70 percent of marketing executives looking to grow their teams, digital marketing skills are in high demand. In fact, according to BrainStation’s 2019 Digital Skills Survey, a majority of organizations and marketing teams are planning to increase investments in content marketing, social media marketing, and brand strategy.
These increased investments in digital marketing are changing the skills requirements and responsibilities for marketing roles. And given that job openings typically attract an average of 250 resumes, job seekers are under increasing pressure to write marketing resumes that stand out from the crowd.
In fact, Jobvite found that 75 percent of applicants never make it to the interview stage, meaning your resume is your primary opportunity to present your marketing skills – you have to make it count. While that may seem daunting, writing a standout marketing resume is achievable if you know where to focus your efforts.
Here are some tips to help you create a digital marketing resume that stands out.
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Keep it Simple
Research indicates that employers look at an applicant’s resume for approximately six seconds, giving you a very small window to make an impression. Recruiters need to be able to sift through your resume quickly, and the best way to ensure this is by keeping your layout clean, with a brief profile that highlights key marketing skills and experience.
It’s human nature to want to overdo things, but a concise, minimal resume can be eye-catching without being cluttered. Niamh McCarthy of Morgan McKinley advises applicants to “keep it simple. Use bullet points where possible and keep paragraphs short.”
Take this resume template. It’s neatly organized so recruiters can quickly scan your qualifications, and its clean organization also give off a serious, professional aura.
Tailor Your Resume to Each Marketing Job Application
Just as you would tailor your marketing efforts to your target audience, you should be tailoring your resume to your target employer. To start, take a close look at the language of the job posting. The skills and experience listed are a roadmap for your resume writing.
To help you identify these skills, look out for three separate buckets: marketing skills that are directly related to the job (e.g. specific software or technical requirements), transferable skills (like fluency in an additional language), and adaptive skills (e.g. being a good problem solver).
Once you’ve isolated a list of skills, zero-in on the first group (the job-related marketing skills). These must-have skills should be on your resume. In fact, they should be in the top third of your resume so that Hiring Managers can see them during a quick scan. Adding tasks and responsibilities to your work experience is an easy way to address this.
Once you’ve added the must-have skills, you then should be looking for spots throughout the resume to include more of the transferable and adaptive skills. The job posting is again your best source of inspiration, but don’t stop there. Take the time to research the organization. Every company has a unique culture and will look for qualities that align with organizational values. Get a good sense of the company, and look to include language that fits their tone.
This research may even impact the overall look and feel of your resume. If, for example, you are hoping to land a job at a marketing agency that values creativity and innovative thinking, you might want to consider a design-heavy resume template that showcases those traits.
“A creative resume allowed applicants to show personality and creativity, and it allowed me to judge skills that would directly translate to the role,” explains Kelly Poulson, VP of Talent and Operations at Allen & Gerritsen. She warns, though, that the aforementioned simplicity is still best. “There’s a difference between eye-catching and overwhelming,” she says.
This template from ResumeInventor is a good example. It offers a unique spin on the typical resume layout, while still presenting information in a clean and simple way.
Use Numbers to Quantify Your Accomplishments
Hiring Managers are interested in your past marketing successes, so it’s important to highlight those achievements on your resume. The best way to quantify results and achievements is to provide specific numbers, objectives, and goals reached. For example, I added 1,200 qualified leads through a targeted social media campaign in Q3 of 2018.
Claude Jones, part of the hiring team at Walmart Labs even provides a formula for how to structure measurable results: measurable result = task + demonstrated skill + quantifiable data
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“Hiring Managers are looking for employees that yield results. Just listing your achievements alone is only part of the equation. Adding quantifiable data not only enhances your resume but gives Hiring Managers proof of what you’re capable of,” Jones explains.
In the end, your resume is a way to market yourself. It’s the first (and sometimes only) opportunity to stand out and communicate your skills to potential employers, and what’s more persuasive than good old-fashioned data?