When research shows 93 percent of recruiters use social networking tools to help them identify and hire qualified applicants, it makes sense to create profiles on networks where you expect people in your industry to spend time. This raises the question: how can you really make the most of time you spend using social media?
Identify the best networks for your industry. Where are you most likely to “meet” people in your field? Search the networks you enjoy and see if your colleagues and contacts are using those networks. LinkedIn is a natural fit for professional use, but you could be surprised to find an active Twitter chat or Google+ hangout.
Create amazing profiles. You wouldn’t go to a networking event without getting dressed, would you? Likewise, don’t start stepping out on social media until you’ve put together profiles and bios that articulate your value proposition. People should easily understand what you offer when they click through to learn more about you.
Post useful content. Be a resource to your community. While you want to feature your story and your skills, be sure you’re providing value to the people who follow you. Don’t share too much self-referential information, and make a point to pay attention to what interests your community the most. What “goes viral” (is most popular) in groups where you are a member? What attracts the most comments and shares? Put your “researcher” hat on and take action accordingly.
Consider what hiring managers want to see. Jobvite’s survey said employers are looking for the following information when they check you out online:
- professional experience
- length of professional tenure
- industry-related posts
- mutual connections
- specific hard skills
- cultural fit
- examples of work
Illustrate your passion for the work. Illustrate your commitment by keeping up with the news affecting your business. This is easy to do via social media tools.
Be active. Don’t dabble — fully commit! If you see a community you think is worth your time, jump in with both feet and get engaged. Follow thought leaders and demonstrate how you belong among their ranks. Show that you’re interested in company profiles of organizations where you might want to work, too.
Demonstrate good judgement. Show you know better than to spout off on social about something that bothers you. Illustrate what you know about your field, don’t use your social media feeds as a complaint outlet. Jobvite’s Social Recruiting Survey featured a number of items particularly irksome to employers. Numbers represent the percentage of employers bothered by the item:
- illegal drug mentions: 83 percent
- sexual posts: 70 percent
- poor spelling and grammar: 66 percent
- profanity: 60 percent
- guns: over 50 percent
- mentions relating to alcohol: 44 percent
- political updates 17 percent
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