When you think of social media, you may think of posting fun photos, connecting with friends or sharing your thoughts on current events, but have you thought about using social media to further your job search? Today’s social media platforms are more than just a fun way to express yourself, they’re a way to network with people, connect with companies and discover job opportunities all over the world.
How can you leverage social media to create opportunity in your next job search? Updating your social media accounts with professionalism in mind, following company social media platforms and influencers and engaging with the online professional community can help you utilize this powerful tool to land a job.
Create and clean your social media accounts
In order to successfully utilize social media in your job search, you’ll need to start by creating or cleaning up any existing profiles. If using social media in a professional sense is new for you, you may want to start by creating a LinkedIn profile. LinkedIn is a professional social networking site that allows you to search for jobs and also for companies to search for potential employees. LinkedIn’s online community comprises over 810 million members and more than 57 million companies.
LinkedIn profiles should include past work experience, a summary of your qualifications and a professional photograph. Users can also utilize features such as LinkedIn’s “Open to new opportunities” setting. Turning this setting on allows recruiters to know that you are looking for positions, and also gives you the option to list what kind of jobs you are looking for, types of companies you might be targeting and location preferences.
While LinkedIn is a great social media outlet for job searching and networking, updating and cleaning up profiles on other social media platforms is also important. A survey conducted by CareerBuilder found that up to 70 percent of employers check social media as part of their hiring and screening process. You should be conscious about what you’re posting online, what kinds of posts you may be tagged in and who can see them. A good rule of thumb? If it seems questionable, delete it. For more tips on cleaning up your social media profiles, check out this article.
Follow companies and influencers
Once you’ve created or updated your social media profiles, it’s time to start networking. Social media is a great way to connect and keep in touch with companies that you may want to work for. When you follow or “like” a company on social media sites, it adds company posts and updates to your social media feed. This will help you stay up to date on company news and new job opportunities.
Following companies on social media can also provide great insight into company culture. Many companies use sites such as LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter to provide updates on company happenings and share perspectives on current events or industry news. Platforms like Instagram and TikTok provide more insight into company culture, showcasing fun events, highlighting employees or engaging in the latest social media trends.
Not only can you follow companies, but you can also connect directly with employees, influences and thought leaders within your industry of choice. Following people is a great way to learn about the company they work for and hear thoughts on industry trends or current events. You can also grab the attention of thought leaders in your industry on social media by commenting on their posts or resharing a piece of content that they shared.
Engage with the online community
Following companies on social media is great, but to really leverage social media in your job search, you also need to engage with people in online social media communities. Social media favors users who are active on their sites, so committing to spending a bit of time to engage on social sites each week is important.
Engagement can vary from platform to platform. Some examples include requesting to follow or “friending” people, posting status updates, or commenting on or sharing others’ posts. When you are actively engaged on social media, it shows companies and other platform users that you’re interested in what they’re doing. It can also help boost views to your profile or your chances of connecting with a potential employer.
When using social media to further your job search and engaging online, it’s also important to establish yourself as a thought leader in your industry. You can do this by posting content that pertains to your areas of interest. For example, if you’re interested in pursuing a career in healthcare administration, you can post one relevant article each week and offer your insights on the topic. Showcasing your expertise will help draw eyes to your profile and further your job search.
Social media is a powerful tool for job seekers. By updating your social media accounts, following company social media platforms and influencers and engaging with the online professional community, you can use social media to further your job search and land your next great opportunity.