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Do you have a personal marketing plan?

personal marketing plan exampleEvery so often this topic appears on Proformative, but is never really examined in depth. So I did a fast Google (love the all purpose word, noun, verb, adverb) and saw this "PERSONAL CAREER MARKETING PLAN" from USC, used in something called "Michigan Saves:" Interesting enough, it is for intents and purposes a SWOT analysis. So what is your plan like? Is it formalized? What format or theory is it based upon? Maybe you want to share the template? Is it dynamic or static? Most importantly, did it or does it work?


Topic Expert
Wayne Spivak
Title: President & CFO
LinkedIn Profile
(President & CFO, |

So, it would seem no one really has a personal career marketing plan.

Is it that we know implicitly our own SWOT; or like most businesses, it takes too much time to write a business plan, and we can just wing it?

Ernie Humphrey CTP
Title: VP, Thought Leadership
Company: Stampli
LinkedIn Profile
(VP, Thought Leadership, Stampli) |

I am not sure that many have people have a "formal" personal career marketing plan, but I do think that people manage their online professional brands so they can have opportunities "coming in" even when they are employed. In today's world things are so dynamic that I do not think a formal plan would stay "relevant " long. Maybe it is more practical for people to have something like an informal "Career Rolling Forecast". Cindy Kraft, care to comment here?

Chris Shumate
Title: Accounting Manager
Company: Dominion Development Group, LLC
LinkedIn Profile
(Accounting Manager, Dominion Development Group, LLC) |

I will admit, Wayne, I was a little confused about this topic. When I think of a personal marketing plan, I think of our resumes are being the marketing product, and the plan as being a goals to get us to the next position. I would be interested in taking this topic a little deeper so that I can have a better understanding of what you mean.

Ernie Humphrey CTP
Title: VP, Thought Leadership
Company: Stampli
LinkedIn Profile
(VP, Thought Leadership, Stampli) |

Chris, it would be formally comparing yourself to your professional peers. I.E., I am a controller, I want to be a best in class controller, how do I separate myself from all the other controllers out there in terms of my skill set (including soft skills). Relative to your competition you identify your strengths (S) relative to them, your weaknesses (W) relative to them, opportunities (O) to make yourself better (more marketable) than them, and their threats (T) to you (I.E., they are more social media savvy, they are learning SEO), etc. SWOT is often used to benchmark a company against its competitors or an entire industry. In this case you are benchmarking yourself against those which you are and/or will be competing for the job you want (or the job you want to keep)

Michael Davis
Title: CFO
Company: Private
(CFO, Private) |

This conversation has made me think that it's odd that executives who often work from a plan in their professional life, would not have a plan around their own marketing.

A SWOT analysis is fine as far as it goes, but it's not really a plan... with a SWOT and 25 cents you can make a phone call.

Do other corporate finance professionals merely start doing stuff, without any form of personal marketing plan - however incomplete that may be?

When I think of a plan, I think of written and specific steps to reach SMART goals with a timeline. Is that out the window when it comes to personal marketing?

Tarun Joshi
Title: Manager
Company: Deutsche Bank
(Manager, Deutsche Bank) |

Personal Marketing to me includes making oneself more visible and to enhance the chances of converting a potential opportunity into real ones. One would always do a SWOT analysis for oneself but the marketing will help in betterment in ones life based on action taken on SWOT analysis. It may include networking. I agree with Ernie that the goals will keep changing as one moves up the ladder.


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