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Three Reasons to Use Social Media in Your Job Search

Looking for a job is never easy. And for young professionals who have recently graduated from college, it may seem like there’s a lot of competition out there. So how do you stand out in a pile of resumes?

For starters – look beyond the resume! Use social media to show your skills, show you’re keeping up with the industry, and show your personality.

Show your skills

Today’s era of communication is vastly different than it was 10 years ago, and businesses are looking for fresh talent with a knack for new technologies. After growing up in an online, connected world, you can show off your expert skills on social networks.

  •         Developers could build their own custom resume website or mobile application from scratch.
  •         Designers can share some of their recent work on an Instagram account.
  •         Writers can create a blog using Tumblr, Blogger or Wordpress.

And that’s not all! Consider publishing videos on YouTube, broadcasting on Periscope or creating your own decks on SlideShare.

Show you’re keeping up with the industry

Communication hasn’t just changed… it’s changing. And professionals are expected to continue learning and honing their craft on an ongoing basis. Use social media to stay in-tune with industry news and share your own thoughts.

To start, follow publications and blogs. Share the content that interests you on Twitter, and engage in conversations with influencers. And did you know you can use SlideShare to curate content? With SlideShare Clipboards, you can clip specific slides from others’ decks and organize them by topic. Try compiling the most educational slides on your industry and sharing your Clipboard with your LinkedIn network.

Show your personality

I’m pretty certain that the most common question asked by students when discussing the intersection of social media and the job search is “should I have a professional and personal account?” I understand why students often ask this question. It’s no surprise, really, when you hear that 51 percent of employers pass on applicants because of their social media content.

But despite statistics like that one, I’ve urged students to maintain a single, open presence online for a long time. I think that doing so opens a window into your hobbies and interests, and helps hiring managers envision how you might fit into the culture at the organization. You will certainly seem more human and more fun if people see the “real you.”

Of course, the obvious asterisk here is that your “personal” social media content needs to always be both legal and tasteful. For instance, I love rap music, and like to share a fire line or two from time to time. But I’ll restrain from sharing lyrics that are overly explicit or could be taken offensively. Understanding where to draw the line – and staying on the right side of it – ultimately shows maturity and strong decision making skills.

Combine the creative use of social media with the tried and true methods of receiving a great education and excelling in offline networking with others in the industry, and you will be well on your way to landing your dream job!

Jim Mignano

Jim Mignano is an Account Executive at Text100 and a College at Brockport alum. He is currently serving as PRSA Rochester’s President-Elect and also volunteers with the Young PR Professionals group. You can connect with him on LinkedIn or learn more about him in PRSA Rochester’s Advisory Network.

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