It's ridiculously easy and inexpensive to create a video resume today and there are some definite advantages.
Few candidates today utilize video resumes - in my experience, it's only a few percent of candidates (perhaps higher in fields like advertising and video production). Video resumes can help a job seeker in so many ways, I wondered why more weren't taking advantage. I think there's a little fear involved combined with a misunderstanding of expense and time commitments.
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First let's explore why YouTube can help you and why video resumes are worth considering. There are a number of reasons video resumes can help:
- Google: Google owns YouTube and Google rankings love YouTube. Adding YouTube content can help you move way up Google search rankings, and help you be found by recruiters, HR reps, and hiring managers (see http://recareered.blogspot.com/2010/04/how-does-google-affect-your-job-search.html).
- Helps in Advertising, Marketing, Social Media fields: I'd say video resumes are a must in these fields today, and anything having to do with corporate communications. Today, you're at a disadvantage in these fields if you aren't using video, since your future job will probably be related to video use for your employer. Video can be a huge advantage in sales, since you're essentially showing how you sell (yourself) to a hiring manager.
- Describes who you are: Video helps you connect to your readership better than a resume. Video helps your audience see who you are, how you communicate, and gives a glimpse of fit (see http://recareered.blogspot.com/2010/04/who-are-you.html).
- Social Branding: Video can help you establish your social brand more quickly than words - remember what they say about pictures? Your social brand is even more important if you are trying to drastically change careers, job functions, or industries (see http://recareered.blogspot.com/2009/12/why-use-social-branding.html).
- Integrates well with other tools: Video integrates well with your Linkedin, Facebook and Twitter. Video integrates well with your email, and your resume. Video integrates really well with blogs or online portfolios. Best yet, the integration is easy, requiring little more than copying links (see http://recareered.blogspot.com/2008/06/how-online-portfolios-put-you-at-top-of.html).
- It's easier than you think: All you need is a webcam, or camcorder. Most digital cameras, and even modern phones can work (most phones don't deliver the best video, so might not be your best choice).
- It's free, or inexpensive, your choice: There's no cost, and it takes little time. If you want to go professional, there are many inexpensive choices.
- Few of your competitors use video: It's that much easier to stand out if you're the only one doing this.
- Who do you want to portray? Serious? Funny? Creative? This is a critical decision, since unleashing your comedy routine probably won't work if you're trying for a job as a banker. Funny might make your video viral (a good thing) or a viral disaster. Make sure you have enough people review your video before posting so you know the response it will bring.
- What message? Do you want your video to be a spoken resume? Or examples of how you can market a product?
- Is production value important? Production value will be more important if you are in the advertising, marketing, media or communications fields. Probably less important if you are in finance or technology.
How to get started. You certainly can choose a more detailed approach, but here are the basics:
- Plan: Plan how you will brand yourself. Make sure that your video branding is consistent with the social branding efforts of your resume, social media, blog, and online portfolio. Plan choices of serious or funny, high or low production value, special effects desired.
- Script: Write everything out. Few people can "wing it" and look good on video.
- Film: This can be as simple as sitting in front of a webcam (or camcorder), or paying a professional videographer to film and edit. If you are looking for a professional, you can find inexpensive options on Craigslist.
- Edit: Basic video editing software comes with Windows and more advanced/intuitive software is inexpensive. You can also find inexpensive video editors on Craigslist. In addition, there are a number of services that will help you script, film, and edit, delivering a finished product for a reasonable cost.
- Upload: Once you've filmed and edited you just upload the completed file to YouTube. Even if you're using an all in service that hosts the video, still upload to YouTube to make it more easily found.
- Share: Once you have a linkable URL, or embeddable code, share via your resume, email, social networks, blog, and portfolio. The more websites you post to, the better your Google rankings.
Any readers or recruiters have video success stories they can share?
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