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Today investing in your career means investing in an online presence. Did you know that 80% of employers Google applicants before interviewing them? Having a personal website doesn’t only provide a place to curate your work and resume, but it can be used as a way to stand out in the professional world. If you don’t have time to create a personal website just yet, having a professional online profile can help put you in front of the right employers.
Here are some tips for building your own online portfolio:
1. Brand your Site with a Custom URL and Design
When it comes to promoting yourself online, think about how to organize and maintain your web space. Picture your website like a neat and clean office–with everything easy to find, color coordinated and in its proper place. With your online portfolio, you can invest in a customized domain name, with your first and last name (or something related to your industry), to make your portfolio easy to find for employers. Having your own website address adds an extra layer of professionalism to your online presence.
In addition to customizing your URL, you can also set up a unique logo or brand. This can be something simple like choosing a font for your name, a tagline, a pop of color or a symbol to define your work. Having a distinctive design helps potential employers or clients remember who you are and what you offer. Just remember to keep designs simple and professional.
2. Include Work Samples in your Online Portfolio
Alongside setting up your website and designing it, think about its content. Depending on your field, you may want to include a lot of work samples in your online portfolio or you may want to use a select few. Think about your career goals and the type of work you would like to do in the future. If you would like to showcase a variety of skills, adding more portfolio pieces may be necessary. On the other hand, if you want to specialize in one field, such as videography or sports journalism, perhaps showcasing some of your best work is right for you. That way, you can always show people more of your work, too!
In addition to work samples, many portfolios have various interactive elements such as videos, a resume page, an artist statement, teaching philosophy, links to social media or a blog. These items are other ways to make your portfolio stand out from others.
3. Make your Portfolio Visual: Photograph your Work
As I continued college, professors would often advise to include more images in online portfolios. Making websites visual is key. If you are a teacher, perhaps photograph your classroom or include a photo of you presenting research. If you are a writer, include photos of your recent books or publications. Even graphic designers and artists can make their portfolio more visual by photographing the process behind their designs, their studio space, how their designs look on various laptops, tablets or phones. There is no limit in capturing your work beyond the lens–so grab your camera (or a friend’s) and get creative!
4. Include Specific and Concrete Results in your Portfolio
Another good strategy is to include specific facts and results related to the work in your portfolio. Include numbers like how many articles you’ve written, how much awareness you created for the company, or how many people attended an event you planned. Concrete examples like “Boosted Facebook impressions by 250%” give more context to work and show your drive for tangible results and success for a company.
5. Use your Portfolio to Express your Personality
While focusing on your work is important, don’t forget to have fun with it! There are many ways to show your personality through your portfolio–through a photo of yourself, your writing, a video or a logo. Don’t be afraid to take risks. Think of creative ideas to market yourself–maybe through a video resume or a free e-book giveaway relevant to your industry.
6. Keep it Simple
Ultimately, some of the best portfolios make a strong impact in just a couple sentences. You want your portfolio to be a quick read, with convenient navigation and organization. Let your work be the focal point of your portfolio. Let your story be in the spotlight.
Get started with building your free online profile with ProSky today and get one step closer to landing your dream job!