When you hear the phrase “dream job,” what comes to mind? What field is it in? What position is it? With what company? And what would you spend your days doing?
Now here’s another important question: What does it take to land this type of job?
Most people would answer that you need the right education, the right experience, and, of course, knowing someone who could help get you in the door would definitely be a bonus. But there is something else you could be doing to help make your dream job more of a reality and it revolves around social media.
Social Media and Employment Opportunities
If you’re looking for a job, your social media accounts could be the difference between being the first prospective new hire in line and being last one on the list. For instance, in 2013, the Chicago Tribune reported that a survey conducted by The Adler Group found that 14 percent of those questioned secured their jobs after being found on LinkedIn.
On the flip side, a 2014 survey conducted by CareerBuilder discovered that more than half of the companies looking for new staff passed on someone due to their social media pages. So how do you make sure your social media pages do the former instead of the latter? To answer that question, we’ve brought in some expert advice.
Arthur Tubman is the CEO and founder of D4Y Brand Builder, an online marketing agency, and he has a true passion for learning, teaching, coaching, and speaking about social media. Over the years, Arthur has hosted many workshops and events teaching people how to use social media, also helping companies and celebrities manage their brands and reputations online.
Here is his simple 4-step process for using social media to help you get the job you want:
Step 1. Update Your Profile (And Keep It Relevant)
“Managing your brand online is important,” says Arthur. That’s why he recommends that you “keep your profile relevant and update it frequently. A stale profile is sometimes worse than no profile.” How do you do this?
“Creating a LinkedIn profile is the first step,” he says. When you do, be sure to “list your most relevant experiences, have a good headshot, and include keywords that make it easy for the right people to find you in their searches.”
If you’re struggling with setting up your page, Arthur suggests that you “create a list of 10 to 15 people who are in the field that you are interested in and check out their profiles. This should give you some ideas for creating your own profile.”
You can apply this same process if you are having difficulty with coming up with good keywords. Simply “take a look at some popular searches recruiters do in your field as well as some job descriptions for these types of roles and see how this can be applied to your own profile based on the experiences you’ve had,” he says.
Step 2. Get Active
Once you have your profile page updated, Arthur suggests that you “join LinkedIn groups that align to your industry, professional interests, associations, and organizations to stay relevant. This allows you to interact with others in your space and create connections to individuals who can help you in your job search process.”
Sometimes these connections share job posts in the groups, Arthur explains. But oftentimes it’s just a matter of establishing a relationship that could someday lead to a job.
However, you shouldn’t just post to post, he warns. “Be mindful when contributing to group discussions,” says Arthur. “Make sure they are thoughtful, insightful, and add value to the discussion. Remember that being of service and providing value to your peers is just as important as consuming content of others.”
Arthur adds to “Keep it professional. Potential recruiters may be reading your comments.”
Step 3. Build Your Network
Sometimes finding the job you want is just a matter of connecting with the right people. It’s that old adage of, “It’s not what you know, but who you know that matters.” Well, social media is a great way to network and start building those ever-important connections.
“Social media provides us with tons of insights on companies, industries, and people,” says Arthur. “It allows us to see where people work, what their roles are, their previous employers, their interests, professional associations, school information, etc. This can be very helpful when you are doing research on companies you want to target during your search, as well as information on your interviewers.”
Arthur shares that building your social network starts with following the companies you’re interested in, enabling you to stay up to date on what they’re doing as well as keeping you apprised of any open job opportunities they may have. “You can also use a free tool such as Google Alerts or Google Trends to read up and be in the know as news and hot topics surface in your preferred industry,” shares Arthur.
“When you come across positions you are interested in, you can utilize the advanced search in LinkedIn to see who in your network is connected to that company and how to help you get connected directly to the hiring manager and recruiters for those roles,” he says. “Once you figure out who the right contacts are – don’t be shy. Reach out to them!”
Step 4. Establish Your Credibility
After you’ve updated your profile, increased your activity, and started to build your network on social media, Arthur says that your next step is to “establish your credibility in your particular field of interest.” You can do that by “tweeting, blogging, and sharing your opinions through comments and discussions.” How does this help?
“As you create your online presence, you are building your social clout (a.k.a. social capital),” he explains, “and are more likely to be viewed as someone with expertise…that provides value to the community. This doesn’t go unnoticed by recruiters and hiring managers who are looking for engaging and passionate people in their space.”
Follow these four simple steps and your social media accounts may be what lands you your dream job. That’s a nice thought, isn’t it?
If you enjoyed reading this blog, you might also enjoy:
Final Round Interviews: What to Expect and What Questions to Ask.
How to Use Social Media to Grow Your Professional Network
Photo: Esther Vargas