How to Sell Yourself in a Job Interview [Ultimate Guide]

This post may contain affiliate links, which means I’ll receive a commission if you purchase through my links, at no extra cost to you.  Please read full disclosure for more information.

“I just don’t know how to sell myself” is one common complaint you will often hear from job seekers. It’s one thing to feel confident in your abilities, but it’s another thing entirely to effectively sell those abilities to a potential employer.

In fact, most interview coaching experts have reported that only about 30% of job seekers know how to sell themselves effectively in an interview. This leaves a whopping 70% who need help with this critical skill!

Yes, it can be challenging selling yourself, especially if you’re not used to doing it. But with a bit of practice and the right mindset, you’ll be able to do it like a pro in no time. 

In this ultimate guide on how to sell yourself in a job interview, we’ll show you everything you need to know about cultivating this skill. 

What Does It Mean To Sell Yourself In An Interview?

Statistics show that there are an average of 250 applications for any job posting. With such high numbers, you need to do everything you can to make your application stand out.

And that’s where knowing how to sell yourself comes into play!

Many job seekers make the mistake of thinking that the interviewer will already be sold on them based on their resume and cover letter. However, this is not the case. Even if you have the perfect qualifications for the job, you still need to show the interviewer why you are the right person for the job. 

Think of it this way: A job interview is your chance to show the interviewer that you’re not just a piece of paper; you’re a real person with the unique skills and abilities they need.

 So what does selling yourself really mean? 

  • It means promoting your skills, experience, and qualifications to the interviewer in a way that will make them want to hire you. 
  • It’s about effectively communicating your skills, abilities, and accomplishments in a way that will make the interviewer see you as the best candidate for the job.

You should, however, note that selling yourself in an interview is not about making things up or stretching the truth. Be honest.

Sounds easy enough, right? Continue reading to learn more:

Keys To Selling Yourself In A Job Interview

Ever wondered why some people just seem to be natural salespeople? It’s because they know how to effectively communicate their skills and accomplishments in a way that makes them stand out from the crowd.

Fortunately, selling yourself in a job interview is a skill that can be learned. Here are some key tips to help you sell yourself like a pro:

1. Be Confident

If you don’t believe in yourself, no one else will. So, it’s important to be confident when selling yourself in an interview. This doesn’t mean being cocky or arrogant. Rather, it means being comfortable in your own skin and believing in your abilities 

The best way to build confidence is to prepare for the interview by researching the company, the position, and your own qualifications. The more prepared you are, the more confident you’ll be during the interview. 

A study by Harvard Business School found that people who spent time preparing for their job interviews were more likely to get the job than those who didn’t.

2. Know Your Audience

One of the most important things you can do when selling yourself is to know your interviewers. This means knowing what they are looking for and tailoring your responses accordingly. 

For example, if you’re applying for a job as a salesperson, the interviewer will be looking for qualities such as confidence, negotiation skills, and the ability to close deals. On the other hand, if you’re applying for a job in customer service, you should demonstrate qualities such as patience, problem-solving skills, and the ability to diffuse difficult situations. 

The key is to know what the interviewer is looking for and then highlight your qualities that match those needs. 

3. Don’t Forget To Brag About Your Accomplishments

When selling yourself, it’s important to highlight your accomplishments. Don’t shy away from talking about your successes. Instead, use them to your advantage and sell yourself like a pro. This is what separates you from the other candidates

Talk about your successes in previous roles and how you were able to add value to the company. Be specific and use numbers whenever possible. 

For example, “In my previous role as a salesperson, I was able to increase sales by 15% in just six months.” 

By showcasing your accomplishments, you show the interviewer that you’re a high-achiever who can get results. It also showcases your ability to sell, which is an important skill for any salesperson.  

4. Focus On The Future

In addition to talking about your past accomplishments, it’s also important to focus on the future. Talk about your goals and what you hope to achieve in the role you’re applying for. This shows that you’re not just looking for any job, but you’re specifically interested in the company and the advertised position 

For example, “I’m very interested in this position because I see the potential to grow within the company. In the short term, I hope to contribute to the company’s growth by meeting and exceeding sales targets. In the long-term, I see myself taking on a leadership role within the sales department.” 

By focusing on the future, you show the interviewer that you’re ambitious and have long-term goals. This is an attractive quality for any candidate.

5. Practice Your Pitch

The best way to sell yourself in an interview is to practice your pitch. Delivering a good pitch will show the interviewer that you’re prepared and know how to sell yourself.

This means having well-organized and rehearsed answers to the common question like, “Tell me about yourself.” 

Your “about me” pitch should be no more than two minutes long and should cover your qualifications, experience, and goals. Practice your pitch with a friend or family member before the interview so that you can deliver it confidently and without hesitation. 

How To Sell Yourself In A Video Interview

With more companies conducting interviews via Skype or other video conferencing platforms, it’s important to know how to sell yourself in a video interview:  The good news is that there are effective ways to sell yourself and stand out from the other candidates. 

Here are some tips for how to sell yourself in a video interview:

  • Be on Time:- This seems like a no-brainer, but being on time for a video interview is even more important than being on time for an in-person interview. 
  • Dress the part:- Just because you’re not meeting in person doesn’t mean you can show up to the interview in your PJs. First impressions are important, and you want to make sure you’re putting your best foot forward. 
  • Choose a Great Location:- Your background will be part of the interview, so choose a neat and professional location. Avoid distractions like pets or children, and make sure there’s good lighting so the interviewer can see your face. 
  • Test your Technology in Advance: – The last thing you want is to have technical difficulties in the middle of your interview. Make sure your camera and microphone are working properly and have a strong internet connection.
  • Make Eye Contact and smile:- It can be easy to get distracted when you’re looking at yourself on the screen, but it’s important to remember to make eye contact and smile. This will help you come across as more personable and engaged in the conversation. 
  • Be Confident:- Just like with any interview, it’s important to be confident when selling yourself. Remember to speak clearly and make sure your body language is open and confident. Sit up straight and avoid fidgeting.

How To Sell Yourself In A Phone Interview

There are instances where a phone interview is your only option. Maybe the company is based in another city, or you’re applying for a remote position. Whatever the case, there are still ways to sell yourself during the interview. 

Here are some tips for how to sell yourself in a phone interview:

  • Make a Good First Impression:- The first few minutes of the conversation are crucial. This is your chance to make a good first impression and set the tone for the rest of the interview. 
  • Speak Clearly and Slowly:- It’s easy to get nervous during an interview, but try to speak slowly and clearly. Don’t mumble things or speak too quickly. The interviewer should be able to understand you easily. 
  • Be Enthusiastic:- Even though the interviewer can’t see you, it’s important to show that you’re interested in the position. Smile and use an enthusiastic tone when you’re speaking. This will help create a connection with the interviewer.
  • Have a Cheat Sheet:- It’s helpful to have a cheat sheet with your key points in front of you. This way, you can refer to it if you start to feel nervous or lose your place. Just don’t be too obvious about it!
  • Ask Good Questions:- Interviewers love when candidates ask thoughtful questions. This shows that you’re engaged and interested in the company. Prepare some questions in advance so you’re not caught off guard. 

How To Sell Yourself In 30 Seconds

When you’re networking or meeting someone new, you often only have a few seconds to make a good impression. Whether it’s at a conference or simply running into someone at the grocery store, you want to be able to sell yourself in 30 seconds. 

Here is an excellent example of a 30-sec pitch:

“Hi, my name is Jane, and I work as a web developer. I see that you’re also in the tech industry. Do you mind if I ask you a few questions about your experience?” 

This is a great way to start a conversation because it shows that you’re interested in the other person and their career. It’s also a good way to get your foot in the door for future opportunities.

When you’re selling yourself in 30 seconds, you want to be clear and concise. You also want to come across as friendly and easy to talk to.  

Tips to keep in mind when selling yourself in 30 sec

  • Keep it light, simple, and straight to the point
  • Have a basic structure in mind
  • Start with a strong opening that will grab the listener’s attention
  • Highlight your key skills and accomplishments
  • End with a call to action or question that will keep the conversation going.

How To Sell Yourself In An Interview With No Experience

If you’re fresh out of school or don’t have much work experience, selling yourself in an interview can be a challenge. However, it’s not impossible! Here are effective tips you can use:

  • Focus on Your Skills:- What do you have to offer that other candidates don’t? Maybe you’re a quick learner, or you’re good at problem-solving. Whatever it is, make sure to highlight your skills and how they would benefit the company. 
  • Talk About Your Education:- Even if you don’t have much work experience, your education is still relevant. Talk about any relevant coursework or projects you’ve done that are related to the job. This will show the interviewer that you have the necessary skills for the position. 
  • Highlight Your Accomplishments:- Have you won any awards or completed any impressive projects? These are great things to bring up in an interview! Be sure to highlight your accomplishments and how they’ve helped you grow as a professional.
  • Use Your Network:- Do you know anyone who works at the company? Maybe you have a friend or family member who can put in a good word for you. Utilizing your network is a great way to get your foot in the door, so don’t be afraid to ask for help. 

Show the Interviewer Why They Should Hire You!

Selling yourself in an interview can be a daunting task, but it’s important to remember that you have unique skills and experiences that make you the perfect candidate for the job. Just focus on highlighting your best qualities, and you’re sure to make a great impression! 

We hope this article on how to sell yourself in an interview has given you enough tips to help you land your dream job.

About Post Author

Scroll to Top