Right, “time to update the CV” I was thinking about a year ago. Having spent the past 14 years innovating in the marketing arena, Microsoft Word, just wasn’t doing it for me. And this got me thinking.
We are typically a creative bunch us marketers, and Word doesn’t really do a CV justice. So I bought it upon myself to design an infographic CV, something that would not only showcase my career but also help me stand out from the crowd.
The thing is, I wasn’t really looking for a new job when I did this, it was a social experiment. And one that went viral. Within a month more than 1,000 people had downloaded it. Within 3 months more than 4,000 and 9 months on more than 11,500 people have downloaded a copy.
For me, the days of Word based CVs in marketing are over. Well, over if you want to differentiate and truly sell yourself. vizualize.me offer an infographic CV generator. Ideal for those of you with limited or no design skills.
But for me, LinkedIn has stolen the march on the CV and has te most potential in this area. It’s a brilliant platform they have. Most people keep it up to date and personally I would rather view someone’s LinkedIn profile than bore my way though their word processed version. If I was working for LinkedIn I would look seriously at providing an app or plugin that helps members generate more aesthetically pleasing versions of their profile/CV. They have a tremendous opportunity that is just waiting to be exploited here. And in my opinion something members would pay a premium for. The downloads on my CV are proof that the market is hungry for innovation and me as a hiring manager can confirm this too.
So, back to differentiation and my CV. It was version 1 of my CV, which can be found here that landed me the interview and played a big part in landing a dream role that I am still in today.
You see, the panel had never seen anything like it before. I asked how many people the 2 interviewers had shown it to, the response? “The whole office has seen it” I then went into chapter and verse about how different audiences react to different types of collateral (read about my ideas around 4D marketing here) and asked them to imagine their audiences getting excited about new ways to consume information and how ‘we’ could engage them in targeted, meaningful comms.
The result was a job offer the very next day, despite a number of other candidates waiting for a 2nd interview. The way I saw it, if they hated the CV (and they might well have done) then they would not have liked my approach to the role because the CV represents me, through and through. The fact that they liked it meant that I was a good fit for the role and that my ideas to come would go down a treat.
Remember, a CV serves 1 real purpose. The opportunity to sell yourself. A visually appealing CV combined with the power of social marketing could open more doors than you could ever imagine. I have received countless ‘opportunities’ off the back of version 1 through sharing it on Pinterest, LinkedIn and Twitter as well as a growing number of ‘advocates’ sharing it to their networks.
The next time you think about updating your CV, think again. Do you want to be one of many black and white word documents in someone’s inbox or do you want that dream job to not only find you, but invite you in for a cup of tea?