Let’s face it, you’re going to have at least one video interview with your future employer. And, it could be the interview that determines whether you make it to short list of candidates; so it’s important that you ace the interview.
But just doing a great job is not enough. Remember, there are numerous candidates vying for every open position. If your answers to the interview questions are similar to those of your peers, you’re a commodity – interchangeable with anyone else who can do that job. To truly wow the interviewer and be memorable, you need to stand out from all the other candidates. That means you need to brand your video interview.
To do that, get clear about your brand and integrate it into your digital video interview, including:
What you say
How you say it
The professionalism you bring to your interview
If, for example, your brand is all about organization and precision, you’ll want to make sure all your answers are structured and perfectly clear. You might say things like: “There are three things I learned at my last job that will be extremely valuable to this role. First…I learned…” And you’ll need to make sure what surrounds you is completely organized. If your background is your messy living room, you won’t be communicating that you are detail oriented and organized.
If, on the other hand, your brand is about humor (keeping things in perspective and using humor to calm tense situations), you’ll want to inject some of that humor in your responses. Perhaps you can quote a famous comedian or use some of your humor to show you’re comfortable in all situations – even video interviews!
So you might be thinking: That sounds logical, but I am not sure what my brand is.
Here’s how to uncover the brand called you:
Personal branding is based in authenticity. You can only fool people for so long. To build a lasting brand, focus on who you really are and what naturally makes you great. Strong brands are unearthed, not created. The first step is to engage in an intensive process of discerning the key facets of you’re your brand, including your:
Vision and Purpose
Know What People Think About You
Uncovering your brand also means understanding your professional reputation – looking at yourself from the outside in. This action is critical because it helps you validate your self-discovery. Although your brand is based in authenticity, it’s held in the hearts and minds of those who know you. So you need to understand external perceptions. I use 360Reach (Disclosure: 360Reach is a product of my company, Reach Personal Branding) to obtain honest, actionable external feedback. If you aren’t clear about how others perceive you, you might be building your brand on a flimsy foundation.
Know Your Secret Sauce
Authenticity is critical, but it is not enough. Differentiation is critical to effective branding. That means knowing what sets you apart from everyone else who does what you do. If you don’t stand out, you’re a commodity, not a brand. You sit among countless others, unable to attract the attention of those who can be critical to your success. To understand what makes you unique, start by determining what you have in common with your colleagues. Then think about those things that make you YOU. You might consider:
How you do what you do (how you create value)
Quirky characteristics (your differentiation)
Passions, interests and hobbies
At the end of this self inquiry, you’ll not only know what separates you from others – those things you do better than anyone else – but you’ll have clarity about your professional reputation.
Know Who Needs to Know You
The last element of this self discovery journey has to do with your target audience – in this case, hiring managers for the roles you are pursuing. Contrary to popular belief, personal branding is not about being famous; it’s about being selectively famous. It means being visible and available to the people who are making decisions about you. So create a list of those people who need to know you so you can achieve your goals.
Once you’re clear about your target audience, take a look back at what you uncovered about yourself – authenticity and differentiation – and think about which elements would get your target audience excited about you.
When you’re uncovering your brand, you ask yourself a lot of questions. I have consolidated the 50 most important questions for you to ask yourself into one document. You can download it here.
Dubbed the Personal Branding Guru by Entrepreneur, William Arruda is a motivational speaker, author and the cofounder of CareerBlast. Get his latest free e-book: 13 Things All Successful Professionals Do To Fuel Their Careers.