You have a product to sell – your skills – but you have a lot of competition. You need to be able to very quickly, clearly and memorably communicate what differentiates you. That’s your brand.
A tagline is a one-liner that instantly conveys your professional brand.
“How would I use a tagline in my job search?”
Use it in your resume as a headline or in the summary, at the top of your social media profiles, on your business cards and in your email signature – so people “get it” about you, right from the start.
You can even adapt it for use as an elevator pitch in networking situations, and as your answer to “Tell me about yourself” in job interviews.
Here are some good taglines people have used:
“PMP-certified Project Manager – Known for successfully leading multi-million dollar projects in developing countries.”
Great! This communicates a job title, a key credential, and a couple of specialties, all in less than 120 characters so it will fit as a LinkedIn headline, among other uses.
Or let’s say you’re the head of a recruiting firm and you want to emphasize your great interpersonal skills, including humor and communication. Here’s what recruiter Michael Bense has on LinkedIn:
“Head honcho, headhunter, sometime head-shrinker and living proof that the only good recruiter is NOT a dead recruiter!”
Here’s a more conservative tagline from a different field:
“Six Sigma Master Black Belt | Dedicated to process excellence in auto manufacturing”
Or you could get very specific about your great results, as this tagline does:
“Social Media Expert driving successful campaigns on a shoestring budget. 800%+ ROI in the past 12 months.”
When writing a tagline that will be used as a LinkedIn headline, include keywords that will help you get found by recruiters. The most important keyword from a recruiter’s point of view is the name of the job they’re trying to fill, e.g., “Project Manager” in the first example above. Or you can add your title before the tagline, as I’ve done here with the third example:
“Operations Manager – Six Sigma Master Black Belt | Dedicated to…” etc.
I’ll end this post with my own email signature, which contains my tagline:
Thea Kelley, CEIC, CPRW, OPNS – Personalized, one-on-one career services. Get a great job, sooner!