Resumes are boring.
We know this. Anyone who has spent time tediously quantifying all their past (read: passe) achievements, titles, companies, degrees, etc., knows it’s hype and propaganda, with the most positive spin possible on even the worst situations.
Anyone who has screened resumes and set up interviews with promising candidates knows that the people who show up may be much less impressive than the resumes they submitted.
Twenty years ago Jack Chapman adapted ideas from marketing genius, Jay Abraham, and invented a marketing tool that gets ten times the response of a traditional resume. It’s called a “Special Report.”
What is a Special Report?
A Special Report is a few pages describing some simple, but essential, how-to information. Whatever your profession, you have some wisdom about how to make things run smoother, better, easier, more profitably, etc. It doesn’t have to be rocket science.
Consider Steven Covey’s best-selling classic, Seven Habits of Highly Effective People. There’s no rocket science in that book. Covey recommends things like: “Be Proactive” and “Begin with the End in Mind.” These are simple ideas that work and made him millions of dollars. A special report reminds the reader of simple but important ways to improve things and create substantial value.
A special report works better than a resume for several reasons:
1) It Emphasizes Contribution
Unlike a resume (which screams, “I want a job!”), special reports emphasize your ability to contribute to, not take from, the contact. Instead of being distracted by your job-hunting needs, contacts will focus on their own businesses and the ideas you present to help them make or save money.
2) Positions as Expert
Achievements in a resume can give credibility, but most people discount resumes. Job hunters often inflate responsibilities, hide failures, exaggerate results, and otherwise distort their record. A resume positions you as a job hunter, and the resume reader uses a magnifying glass to uncover flaws, gaps, and cover-ups.
A well-thought-out Special Report immediately positions you as accomplished in a different way. You’re speaking industry language and you’re communicating information that produces results. The fact that you can compose such a piece gives you more credibility than a resume (which, unlike the special report, any resume service can write for you).
3) Interesting New Format
The Special Report is different and more interesting, but isn’t an unprofessional novelty like Day-Glo orange resume paper. The format is compelling, and people remember receiving it.
4) Substantive Value
Special Reports give money-making or time-saving tips and information. They don’t have to contain blockbuster ideas, just common sense that works.
A resume focuses on the past, while a Special Report can focus on the future, on specific benefits the reader can reap—now and next year!
Special Reports are generally used by those who have experience in their field. If you’ve run an MIS department, a warehouse, or a restaurant for many years, you know tips and techniques that can make the difference between success and failure. In some cases, though, even career changers have effectively used a variation of the special report – the research report – a topic for another issue.
Sample Special Report Titles
→ “Marketing Cardiology Services,” by a director of a wellness/prevention cardiology program.
→ “Ten Ways to Make Your Property Make Money (…that are So Basic and Simple You Probably Forgot”) by a man who wanted to set up networking meetings with property management companies.
→ “Five Keys to Career Satisfaction and Success,” by a career counselor, yours truly.
→ “10 Easy Tips for Improving the Bottom Line: or Robin Shares Batman’s Secrets to Small Business Success,” by a woman targeting work as a controller in a small business ready for growth.
Special Reports free you from the limiting and dull resume format, and they showcase your skills and knowledge. To learn how to develop this tool in your own market campaign, contact me by phone or email.
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Dave Behnen joined Greetabl, a 2012 startup company, as Chief Operating Officer in May. Wishing Dave and the growing company that provides a unique and fun way to send and reveal a custom message much success! www.greetabl.com