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How Social Media Can Help You Find Your Next Job

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Internet-based job hunting might be the norm now, but it’s still a daunting, depressing task. Trawling through all the different job searching sites trying to find anything you might be well-suited for with little evidence of significant progress until you’re actually offered something really begins to sap your strength after a while.

Social media is far from purpose-built for this kind of thing (LinkedIn aside) but it can definitely be implemented to make the whole thing smoother. Think of it as a way of signal boosting your availability, the different platforms correspond to different frequencies, all of them useful in their own way. 

Here’s a rundown of the most popular social networks and how you can best take advantage of them to find a new job:

Note – LinkedIn is not on this list, since it’s entirely built around job-hunting and networking. If you want a more detailed look at how to use that, click here.


Facebook

The most convincing argument I can make for Facebook’s validity as a job-hunting tool is a simple one: it has over 1.23 billion users. If your potential new employer is going to be anywhere online, this is the place with the best possible chance. You will see people from time to time posting hiring status updates calling for new staff but you can’t bank on that kind of thing, nor can you rely on posting your own callouts asking friends to refer you on to employers. With Facebook, the devil is in the details.

The best thing to do first is to thoroughly fill out as many of your past positions in the work and education section as you can until it resembles your CV as closely as it possibly can. Times past all you could do was put in the name of the company but now you can put in what your position was, what your responsibilities were and how long you were there for.

The second thing is to sift through your friends and make a list of professional contacts, do this by going to their profile and clicking the drop-down marked ‘friends’ with a tick next to it and add them to your list of professional contacts. With the list done, you can post professionally targeted status updates, links and whatever else so that you’re getting the attention of the right people without bugging the crap out of everyone else.

The more actively you interact with these people, more Facebook will notice and it will start to recommend you other people to add within those circles, do so. Before long your professional network will begin to expand and you’ll be almost guaranteed to come into contact with people who are looking to hire, or at least know people who are.



Twitter

Like Facebook, albeit not the same extent, Twitter’s massive user-base is the biggest draw, but beyond that the ease with which you can engage with the people to whom you need make yourself known to is a valuable asset. Through hashtags and user tagging you can easily open up a dialogue with anyone in your professional network, potential employer or otherwise.

With Twitter it’s better to have separate accounts, since it makes it easier to keep your feeds consistent. If you use your personal account for both, a pertinent tweet from a professional connection could easily get lost in a flurry of pictures of cats and Taylor Swift retweets. With a professional account you can build up a roster of followed accounts that you can interface with until you’re on everyone’s radar. Search the relevant hashtags and get yourself acquainted with the people who use them most frequently, find out who they retweet regularly, rinse and repeat.

As far as what you actually tweet goes, keep it consistent and keep it relevant. For example if you’re a lawyer, post observations about criminal law changes, refer back to cases you might have worked on, relevant material that showcases your expertise. If you can, try and link back to content you’ve actually created (provided you work in a field which enables you to do that). Once that’s all taken care of try and engage with the people you really want to notice you privately using the messaging function. Ask for advice, send material that you think might interest them, you might feel like you’re pestering them, especially if you don’t get an immediate response but it never hurts to ask, keep active.


Instagram

I know what you might be thinking, how can a photo-sharing app frequented by teenagers and people far too intent on documenting everything they eat really be a beneficial tool for finding job? While it’s neither as heavily subscribed nor as malleable as Facebook or Twitter, if you can develop a knack for engineering ostensibly casual social updates towards appealing to employers, it can be really useful.

Once again the first step is creating a professional account and trawling through all the professional and company-centric accounts until you’ve built a network of relevant updates. The more you add, the more will follow back and that fraction will only widen the more you like and comment on their pictures. But how do you show potential employers that you are a worthwhile prospect with pictures? It’s pretty simple actually, just upload images and videos of yourself working. It doesn’t matter what you do, there will almost invariably be some way of photographically demonstrating your work in an interesting way. Beyond that, post images relevant to past employers, career-related events and past projects.

Be prepared to play the long-game with this one, whilst employers will be impressed with anyone with the forethought to retool Instagram to showcase their work, the quantity of people scrolling through with any kind of mind to look for someone to hire isn’t exactly sizeable yet. This is by no means something to hang your hat on, but it’s a creative, interesting way to put yourself out there and synergy with other social networks means you might end up catching an employer’s eye on 3 fronts, rather than just one.


Callum Davies

Callum is a film school graduate who is now making a name for himself as a journalist and content writer. His vices include flat whites and 90s hip-hop. Follow him @CallumAtSMF

Contact us on Twitter, on Facebook, or leave your comments below. To find out about social media training or management why not take a look at our website for more info http://socialmediacambridge.co.uk/.
How Social Media Can Help You Find Your Next Job Reviewed by Callum Davies on Thursday, April 23, 2015 Rating: 5

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