Before you write a single word of your Advertising resume, you’ve got to think about its message.
It’s child’s play for you to advertise products and services.
It’s ironic however, that as soon as the spotlight is on you, things get complicated.
What’s the best structure for your resume? How do you explain in simple words your value proposition?
Creating a resume that tells more about your skill to make amazing ads is essential.
Fortunately, we’ve compiled a guide on how to get your leg up in the competition for that Advertising specialist job.
Let’s see what makes recruiters say “We need to hire this one!”.
What will you learn today?
- How to make your resume scream advertising & marketing;
- What it takes to create an impactful experience section;
- Techniques to polish your resume summary to perfection;
- Tried and tested ways to tailor your skills to the job description;
- What industry recognised certificates to add to your resume;
Looking for related resumes?
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How to write an advertising resume headhunters will notice?
Before we see what it takes to write a great Advertising resume, we’ll look at some of the less obvious mistakes below.
Most often met mistakes on advertising resumes
#1. 3-4 page-long resume
Recruiters didn’t open your resume to read your life story. It’s called a resume for a reason - your most recent job experience, coupled with accomplishments and relevant skills.
Stay in one page format. The rest can be inferred from your LinkedIn profile and portfolio.
#2. Hard to process formatting
No HR exec will waste their time trying to read a badly formatted resume.
There’s a fine line between being a little creative and sending a resume, printed on a cookie box.
#3. Your resume copy is of low quality
Written and spoken word is queen in the advertising world. You can’t fail on any formatting, spelling and syntax errors.
But, it’s not just about typos. Don’t fill your resume up to the brim with buzzwords - try to sound natural.
#4. Mismatch between job experience and references
Headhunters will check for your titles at previous companies, looking if they match with your resume’s ones.
You can always tweak your previous job title and make it more relevant.
But if you overdo it, you risk to get on the recruiter’s bad side.
Especially if they call in for a reference.
When you send your resume, update your LinkedIn profile as well. Make sure both are consistent in terms of your previous experience and job history, as recruiters go through and check for discrepancies.
#5. Not focusing on accomplishments
Before you talk about any responsibilities and duties, focus on what you achieved.
- Did you maximise ROI of ad campaigns by X percentage?
- Secured big magazine placements for your company?
- Played an integral role in company’s revenue uptick?
List down your 5 biggest highlights and make them the leading points of your experience section.
#6. Leaving time gaps on your resume
Gaps in employment are red alerts for employers, especially if they are not explained.
If you took a break from professional life and dedicated to studying, volunteering or teaching classes, feature this experience like you normally would do with a regular job.
As long as you make it clear that you stayed productive and on course with your personal development, hiring managers would show understanding.
If you did a volunteering spell, took time to travel or dealt with personal matters, you can feature it in between the job experience with italics.
We’ve dealt with the hit-and-miss details, so let’s look at the most important resume sections of an Advertising resume.
5 sections to pay close attention to in advertising resumes
- A well-organised header
- Career summary that focuses on some of your biggest achievements
- Bullet list with numbers and results for your experience section
- Skill section with cherry-picked top competencies
- Certifications that will make you stand out
So how does all of this fit in a single page resume? It all comes to choosing the right layout.
Which format will best suit to Advertising resumes?
In order to pick the best resume layout, you’ll have to take into account your job experience and the position you’re applying for.
Here are the 3 most common layout styles:
- A reverse-chronological resume’s main selling point is your career experience. It’s recommended if you’re at a senior or executive position.
- Functional resume put in front the skills you’ve gained through study or jobs. Entry-level candidates are usually advised to use it, but there’s a better one.
- Hybrid resume combine the best of both worlds. It’s great for people that have assumed multiple roles in a company, or are at entry-level.
To highlight both your skills and experience, go with hybrid resume.
What you need to know about advertising resume header section
There’s one simple thing - first impression.
It’s up to your resume header to deliver that.
Just a few details can either make or break an application.
Apart from distinct contact data, headhunters are adamant about portfolios present on ad resumes.
They show if you can walk the walk with concrete examples of your media, design and writing experience.
Let’s compare the two headers below.
2 Advertising Resume Header Examples
The first one shows a bad use of the extra white space, while the second one’s portfolio link makes all the difference.
In some states, including photos on resumes is forbidden. Do your due diligence before applying.
How to write a resume summary that works
You’ve probably seen advice such as, skip your resume summary, nobody’s going to read it.
That’s because this section gets so overused that same words pop up in every other resume.
Instead, write the career summary as if you are writing passionately about a product pitch.
In a good Advertising resume summary, employers want to see presence of:
- Your years of experience
- Ad revenue driving business growth
- Any big career achievements you are proud of
- Your field of specialty
Let’s look at two different summaries and notice the differences.
2 Advertising resume summary examples
There’s a lot of irrelevant things here that can be put in the sidelines. Let’s look at the second example.
Now, here the author talks about specific achievements from previous roles. The mention of the award is a nice touch.
You can tell it has a bit of an Ogilvy vibe to it.
Simply put, it’s 10/10 career summary!
Advertising resume experience section done right
Before you pen your experience section, ask yourself this:
- Did you get exposure at the right people and agencies?
- Do you make your case and ideas heard?
- Does your work look like you care and understand your clients’ and their business needs?
What if you are just starting out and you haven’t worked on a myriad of projects?
Off the top of our heads, most Advertising positions look for entry level Advertisers with:
- Good knowledge of marketing terms
- Creative mindset
- Real advertising job experience (volunteering projects and internships do count)
- At least two core technical skills
Let’s examine resume experiences done right and wrong.
2 Senior Advertising Specialist Resume Experience Examples
2 Entry-level Advertising resume experience samples
The thing that separates the right from wrong, is accomplishments in the form of numbers and results.
It’s the language business speaks in.
It’s what you should focus on, rather than simply listing your everyday job responsibilities.
Where should you list your certifications on a resume?
Hubspot or Google Analytics certs are important in advertising world.
They prove you grasped the fundamental theory.
How to make sure these certificates get seen?
In case you’ve only got a handful, you can position them either in your resume header or summary.
Otherwise, create a dedicated certificates section and list them out with the year you’ve taken them to prove recency.
Now, which ones to choose? Here are our top advertising certificates to feature.
Top 10 certificates in advertising to add in your resume
- Google Analytics Certification
- Hubspot Inbound Marketing Certification
- Hubspot Content Marketing Certification
- Facebook Blueprint Certification
- Google Ads Certification
- Hootsuite Social Marketing Certification
- Digital Garage - Fundamentals
- AMA Digital Marketing & Marketing Management
- IAB Digital Media Sales Certification
- IAB Ad Operation Certification
Take a good look at the job description. If it calls for specific certifications, make sure you have them or, at least, relevant ones, and include them on your resume.
What skills on advertising resumes make it or break it in applications
Reality check - working in the ad industry is definitely not as exciting or rapidly moving, like Mad Men type of shows portray it.
Don’t believe everything you see on TV.
Like any other commercialised industry, advertising calls for taking criticism easily, endurance and commitment.
This is why your resume should make it obvious that you come with the right set of skills. Make sure you add some of the following in your skills section.
Top 15 industry specific skills for advertising specialists on resumes
- Content Marketing
- CMS experience
- Lead nurturing
- CRM experience
- Email marketing
- Video production
- Data visualisation
- Data science
- Authority Building
- Customer focus
- Direct marketing
- Search engine optimisation
These 15 soft skills will make you better at advertising
- Project management
- Team work
- Critical thinking
- Quick thinking
- Time management
- Problem solving
- Active listening
- Handling objections
- Giving feedback
Consider the fact that you are able to acquire important skills even if you volunteered for non-profit organisations. You must have accumulated experience which you can connect with specific skills. Look for concrete examples that will impress your future employer.
Enhancv’s technique to match job requirements to your specific skills
The next time you read your dream job ad, spend time to highlight the keywords in the “qualifications” or “duties” sections.
The skills and experiences on your Advertising resume should closely reflect what the company wants.
Let’s analyze a real Advertising job offer and and build a list of skills based on it.
“We are seeking a team player with high energy and motivation in professional interactions with clients. Main duties include development of marketing language and design that sends out key messages to client’s markets. The ideal candidate will also have experience in campaign planning and KPI development to ensure campaign effectiveness.
Following this, here’s what you should focus on:
- Demonstrating you’ve worked in a team successfully (mention what your exact contribution was);
- Customer service experience;
- Technical skills in copywriting and design - present examples in your portfolio;
- Experience with campaign planning software and/or proven record of successful ad campaigns;
- Knowledge of how to develop KPIs and what you define as success (ideally should meet business goals).
What to bring home from our advertising resume guide
- Read the job description in detail and extract the necessary skills you need
- Choose a professional looking template that best suits to your experience level
- Make your career summary stands out by including one big achievement you are proud of
- Construct your experience bullet points in a way that you put your results under the spotlight
- List examples of how you achieved the skills you’ve put on the resume
- Add industry recognised certificates to give your resume advantage