Q: With Linked In and online portfolios, do I really need a resume these days?
A: Maybe. Maybe not. If you are applying for a full-time role in content at a brand or a media company, yes. You may be tempted to skip it because you can “easy apply” via Linked In and some other job boards with just your Linked In profile. But most hiring managers and recruiters still want them — they still are much easier to read and provide much more valuable info than Linked Ins usually do. And you should want a “real” resume too. Linked In is a terrible platform for truly displaying your unique offering and personal brand. A resume gives you so much more freedom to showcase where you shine — via special sections dedicated to your writing awards, TV and podcast appearances, books you’ve authored, and/or other industry-specific achievements. Linked In forces you to laundry list your experience, industry affiliations and contributions, and skills (at the bottom no less!) without even the ability to bold or italic let alone package or design anything (not that I’m advocating for a “designed” resume, but a minimalist, easy-to-read resume goes a long way).
The exception? Freelance writers, editors, and other content contributors who work on a contract basis. A traditional resume often isn’t required and for many project-based assignments it feels too stiff and clinical. Plus the classic resume format does a shitty job of promoting your services. Instead, I recommend a streamlined, visually driven portfolio site. If you are a freelancer who offers your clients a variety of services, in addition to a portfolio site, consider a one-sheet that you can send to prospective clients with your proposal that includes all of your services with a testimonial or two from happy clients.
Whether you’re creating a classic resume, optimizing Linked In, building a profile or a one sheet, think of it as promoting your personal brand. This is content marketing for your biggest client: YOU! The format(s) you choose to promote yourself and your work should be presented in the same way you package and curate pieces of content in your professional life. Put those editing skills to good use, baby!
Chandra Turner is founder and CEO of Ed2010 and Talent Fairy. She is a talent recruiter specializing in editorial and content roles. She also offers personalized career coaching for editors and content creators at all stages of their career.