Taking the time to leverage social media enables you to connect with potential employers, find job openings, and get advice en masse from your friends.
On the flip side, committing social media sins can utterly ruin your career prospects. This is especially true with some Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) integrating social profiles found connected through a single email address.
With all that in mind, here’s how to use Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and more best during your job hunt…
A recent study showed that nearly 40% of employers use social media sites like Facebook to screen potential employees. And that number is likely to keep growing.
You’ve probably read enough articles on the do’s and don’ts of Facebook posting to know the basics to avoiding a negative social media impact, but here’s a quick summary:
Don’t put off potential employers by posting questionable content.
Or, be sure that your privacy settings don’t broadcast your updates to those outside your friends list. If you do add potential employers and colleagues, use groups to keep professional contacts separate from family and friends or mark your posts so they’ll only be visible for close friends and family.
Use Twitter to enhance your job search by following companies you’d love to work for and people you want to emulate in your career. Also, be sure to keep your own feed fresh by re-tweeting career-related content or sharing relevant articles often. If you frequently post NSFW (not suitable for work) content on your Twitter feed, consider keeping a separate account for professional use only.
Sites like Twitter and Facebook are great places to let people know you’re on the hunt for a new job, and sometimes the best leads come from pre-existing contacts. Still, keep in mind that even if a friend promises to put in the proverbial good word for you, chances are you’ll likely still be asked to submit a resume online. This means that you’ll be subjected to the dreaded automated resume sorting software. Securing a hot lead on a killer position is only the first step, you’ll still have to nail the resume in order to get an actual interview.
LinkedIn has become a go-to networking site for many talent-seeking recruiters, and can be a significant social media impact for the job hunter.
When you’re eyeing a position, check out the company’s LinkedIn page. Take a look at the profiles of existing employees and find common denominators. Take note of skills, accomplishments, and even personality traits that seem to be shared by the majority. Make sure to play up these kinds of accomplishments and qualities on your own resume when submitting it.
Be careful, however, about making yourself sound unprofessional. Additionally, LinkedIn Groups are a great way to connect to similar jobs seekers, industry leaders and potential hires. There’s a wide variety of groups based on profession or interests, but if you’re job hunting, the Premium Job Seeker’s Group is a popular choice.
Snapchat? For job-searching? Totally!
The app boasts 100 million users, and they’re not all teenagers swapping selfies. Statistics show that 39% of Snapchat users are in the 25-44 demographic. Snapchatters are more engaged than users of any other social media platform, sharing 700 million snaps every day.
You can use Snapchat to get a better glimpse into a company’s culture. Watch what companies you’re following do on Snapchat. After all, social media impact goes both ways. For instance, what do they share and how do they keep attracting new followers? Use their snaps for inspiration in building your own brand — and for potential interview ammo. You can also post work-related or productive updates to your own story and connect your Snapchat profile to your other online channels and boost your followers. Connected and relevant people are the type employers want to hire.
Instagram provides another way to familiarize yourself with the players in your field. It also helps you get to know the companies you’re interesting in working for. Follow and engage with them. Post content relevant to their brand. And you might get noticed which would be a serious leg-up on the competition!
Just remember to make sure you’re exceedingly careful about what you share. Even if you’re not posting anything risque, things like complaining about traffic can be enough to turn off a hiring manager.
Learning how to leverage social media will enhance your job search and put you on a potential employer’s radar.
It can also wreak havoc on your professional reputation if you’re not careful. Use the Internet wisely. And be sure to use expert resume optimization to help you stand out from the online crowd once you get noticed.
For this post, YouTern thanks our friends at Jobscan.
About the Author: James Hu earned his bachelor’s of Information Systems and Finance from University of Washington. Before becoming the Founder and CEO of Jobscan, James enjoyed work experiences at Boeing, Microsoft, Groupon, Kabam Games, and a start-up of his own. Having already worked in the United States, China, and Spain/Gibraltar, James truly integrates a global mindset into his career. In his free time, he enjoys water sports and backpacking. Follow James on Twitter.