Whether you are an actor looking for your next role or you are searching for a career change the importance of a self-promotional website has never been greater.
So what are the key ways a personalized page can help?
First, a website offers potential employers a better look at your personality. Stepping away from the formality of your resume, a website has the potential to highlight skills that may get lost on a sheet of paper. A good aesthetic design, one that offers your potential employer a visual, is likely to stay with them much better than other candidates who may be only representing themselves with a cover letter and list of experiences.
Having a website also gives you more online visibility, which is becoming more and more important as we move into a web focused job market. Appearing professionally in this context gives you credibility.
And websites are crucial for those in a creative field. Take us, for example. How did you find City Headshots? Most likely through Google, right? While word of mouth still remains incredibly valuable, it is the internet that allows creative people with creative services the kind of traffic that offers the ability to make a passion a career.
Deciding to build a website is only the first step to creating a professional online presence, you also need to know what to include. Have a specific reason for creating the site. You undoubtedly have different resumes for different job applications and you wouldn't want to focus a resume on your chef skills or retail experience if you're looking to act. Additionally, make sure that your website is functional and attractive on mobile devices [flash websites may seem cool, but do they work on your phone?]. It is increasingly less likely that your site will be seen on a HD computer monitor. Adjust your aesthetics accordingly.
Once you have chosen your focus you can decide how to tailor a bio, resume, and, especially if you are a creative, examples of your creative work. Make sure also to include contact information for emails and numbers that you check on a daily basis. Providing an email address that you only check once a week has the potential to make your site retroactively look out of date due to the delay.
Speaking of which, include your social media links and update frequently. Have a strong online presence elsewhere to show yourself as involved and enthusiastic. As we have established in so many of our posts, networking for actors is crucial.
And what about your domain name? It is best to have something simple but memorable. www.yourname.com is simple and easy for employers to remember if they already have you resume or business card. Keeping it simple will also allow you to change its focus if you decide that you want to take your career in a different direction.
Ensure that your site and navigation are clear and load quickly. Same for images. Although its crucial to include HD images and video if you choose to use them, consider how they may slow the speed of the page most people will lose interest if it takes more than a couple of seconds.
This is an age of digital branding. You want to market yourself with your website the way you would market yourself in an interview or audition. Make an impression.
But what do you think? Has a website helped you? What do you include?
Comment below or let us know on Facebook or @mjbhomeent !
Hey I'm Martin, and my goal is to help you reach yours. I love writing content about career advancement, marketing strategies, productivity, and much more.