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Whether you’re happily employed or actively searching for a new job, you should be constantly working toward your next career move. Keeping your potential future in mind prepares you for whatever twists and turns come your way.

To do this, the best place to start is with your online personal brand. Of course, application materials like your resume and cover letter are always important, but that’s not where medical sales recruiters begin their evaluations.

In fact, 76 percent of recruiters in a recent MedReps report said they go online first when they receive a candidate application. Additionally, 63 percent said they look for a strong social media presence.

As a medical sales job seeker, this means your personal brand must be stronger than ever. Creating a personal website with a few of your accolades and an updated resume won’t make you stand out anymore. Now is the time to reinvent your personal brand and let recruiters know what makes you perfect for their next job opening.

Here are three dos and don’ts to get you started:

1. Do a SWOT analysis

A SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats) analysis is often done by company leaders. Organizations use them to identify internal strengths and weaknesses, as well as external opportunities and threats.

When it comes to personal branding, the analysis will help you understand what strengths you should highlight, what needs improved, personal branding opportunities you need to take, and what job search obstacles you’ll face along the way.

Consider these questions in each category to start your SWOT analysis:

Strengths:

  • What do you do better than anyone else in the medical sales industry?
  • What do your customers and co-workers see as your strengths?
  • What trait/skill ensures you get the sale?

Weaknesses:

  • What factors have made you lose sales?
  • What do you see as a weakness in yourself?
  • What would stop your manager from giving you a promotion?

Opportunities:

  • What industry connections can you make on LinkedIn?
  • What Facebook or LinkedIn groups have you not joined? If you’re a member of these groups, can you become a thought leader in them?

Threats:

  • What do your competitors’ social profiles look like?
  • What content on your social profiles is a threat to your personal brand?

Once your analysis is complete, create a to-do list to ensure you take every opportunity to enhance your personal brand.

2. Don’t just target hiring pros

Medical sales hiring managers, recruiters, and HR pros aren’t the only people you need to impress. An impressive personal brand is one that impresses and connects with everyone in the industry. That includes other sales professionals, influencers, company leaders, and even employers themselves.

Consider what social media profiles, articles, and online personalities intrigue you. What makes you feel someone is reputable in the medical sales field? Why do you feel drawn to their personality — even if you haven’t met them in person?

Everyone will have their own personal answers to these questions. It could be the articles a person shares, their willingness to share their opinion with the public, or even the way they show their passion for the medical field by volunteering.

Whatever your reasons, use these profiles to guide you in impressing potential future colleagues and employers.

3. Don’t put on a show

There’s a huge difference between creating a personal brand that stands out and one that puts on a show. Standing out means you’re rising above other candidates as a top qualified applicant. Putting on a show, however, means you’re creating a personal brand that will call attention to any and all medical sales recruiters.

Unfortunately, putting on a show doesn’t allow your authentic and genuine self to shine through to recruiters. This means you’ll be contacted by companies that aren’t the right fit for you, resulting in wasted time for both you and hiring pros.

Remember, the most important part of a personal branding is the “personal” aspect. Let medical sales companies see your personal and professional passions. Create content that puts an emphasis on who you are as a medical sales professional. At the same time, don’t be afraid to post pictures of a weekend hike or summer barbeque.

Recruiters and employers want to see who you are as a person, not just as a sales rep.

What makes your personal brand stand out above the crowd? Let us know!

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