Job Search Tip
Social MediaHave you ever Googled your own name? What shows up? That’s what potential employers will see if they search your name (and they will). If there’s anything negative, now is the time to do some damage control. If there’s not much at all, now is the time to build your online reputation and establish your personal brand.
Establishing and monitoring your online presence is more important than you might think. We talked to someone not too long ago who did not have a Facebook page (I know…the last person in America who doesn’t) but met someone who said that he had seen her there. It turns out that the person he had seen had her same name—but was not her. To make matters worse, that person had a Facebook presence that was, let’s say, less than professional. That person’s actions and presence were damaging her own reputation and she didn’t even know it. Our advice to her? Get a Facebook page, pronto. The more she can establish herself and be active online, the more that fights any negative information that’s already out there. That same strategy works if you have something negative in your own past, too. Get active now in social media. You are in charge of what others see about you. Put out positive, professional information. The most current will push down the past, and take back your reputation.
When it comes to a job search, there’s no doubt: LinkedIn and Facebook are the current kings in the social media empire, and you have no excuses not to maintain profiles on these two big dogs. But…I believe that when you’re in a job search, you should pull out all the stops. Hit it hard, be aggressive, and find the job you want fast. There are all kinds of social media platforms you can take advantage of: Google Plus, Twitter, Xing, Viadeo, even Pinterest. Over 90% of hiring managers utilize social media in the hiring process, so you should, too. The more you do online, the easier it is to find you online. Here are a few of the bigger ones to get you started:
Google Plus is great. It’s professionally-oriented and best for business, and it currently seems to be more male than it is female…but no one can afford to ignore it. And it has a high SEO factor, which is good when you’re being Googled.
Twitter has fast response, but not a prolonged response. Things happen fast on Twitter. You’ll only get whatever it is that you put out that day. It’s great for contacts, but you have to keep up with it to make it work for you. Lots of companies and recruiters Tweet that they have a job opening available, but you have to be able to respond fast.
Pinterest is great for any field where you use photos to show your work: graphic designer, cake decorator, party planner, event planner, tailor…any career where you can visually show off your stuff is suited for this.
Xing focuses on business networking and is based in Germany, although it operates in 16 languages. It’s not as big as LinkedIn (which can be an advantage). It has groups you can join like LinkedIn. It has a good reputation and tends to attract independent contractors and small businesses, which can be great places to work.
Viadeo is another business professional social network that began in Europe and offers profiles in multiple languages. It’s said to be more organized and easier to use than LinkedIn.
All of these platforms have ways for you to increase your online visibility, highlight who you are and what skills you have, and demonstrate your forward-thinking, technology-savvy side, too…that’s a big plus for employers.