Using Social Media to Help Your Career
Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn are all incredibly important when seeking potential internships or jobs. We are now more visible than ever which means that we must be careful about what we post online. Below is some advice regarding social media from career counselors and other professionals.
Facebook can be a tricky place to navigate. It’s tempting to get into political debates online or to repost a funny meme that pops up on our timeline. However, always be careful about engaging in inappropriate content because employers may stumble upon your Facebook and may rescind an offer due to certain content on your Facebook pages. Below are some tips to keep in mind when using Facebook.
- Follow companies you would like to work for in the future. Simply like their page and keep up to date with the latest news and potential hiring opportunities.
- Engage in discussions similar to your career goals and passions. For example, if your favorite nonprofit posts an opportunity for involvement, or a bill you support has just been passed by Congress, repost these items onto your timeline. This shows employers you actively keep up with your goals and passions.
- Make your cover photo is something that describes what you’re passionate about. For example, if you want to work in the publishing industry, have your cover photo be of books or a quote from your favorite author.
Tweets have become the sound bites of the internet. Constantly, tweets are going viral and regular people have gained massive followings due to witty tweets. Here are some tips to help keep your Twitter professionally appropriate.
- Follow professionals who work in the field you aspire to work in. Read articles they link in their tweets or check out their tweets that update you on what is currently happening in their field.
- Don’t be afraid to tweet your own links to your blogs and articles, especially if you are a writer.
- Tweet about causes that are important to you. Craft tweets that articulate your goals and values, this will especially help those who are pursuing careers in advertising. Being able to articulate in just a few sentences what is important to you will help you learn how to create marketable soundbites.
Out of all the various social media outlets, LinkedIn is definitely the one platform that every person must have when searching for a new career. LinkedIn can be intimidating so here are some tips from professional career counselors:
- You absolutely must have a professional photo. The headshot should be of only you with a non-distracting background and you should be wearing professional attire.
- Follow companies you would like to work for. Often, companies will announce when they are hiring on their LinkedIn and sometimes even allow potential employees to apply for the job posting straight from LinkedIn.
- Connect with your colleagues, teachers, and past employers. Networking is extremely vital in your job search and never be afraid to ask about potential opportunities available to you. Students are learning and there are many who would love to help provide opportunities to students who want to learn and grow in their chosen field.
- Hint: LinkedIn allows you to customize your connect request. Do not use the standard connect message that LinkedIn provides you. In a few short sentences, introduce yourself and tell the person why you would like to connect with them. Make them know by connecting with you, it won’t be just beneficial to you but for them as well.
- Ask past professors and employers to write you recommendations on your LinkedIn profile. These recommendations will help provide proof that you are a hard worker and will make your profile shine.
There are many more tips out there regarding these social media platforms. Don’t be afraid to ask your college or high school career counselors for help – they are there for you. Good luck on your internship/job search and don’t be afraid of reaching your career dreams.