Knowing how to use your social media accounts is important when embarking on a digital job search because many employers use social media for their talent search. In fact, 73 percent out of 1,855 recruiting and human resources professionals said they have hired a candidate through social media, according to a 2014 Social Recruiting Survey by Jobvite.
At this point, most of us know what not to do on social media. But how should you use social media to a standout from other job candidates?
Here are three ways you can take your online personal brand to the next level and stand out from other job candidates:
Listing your professional experience is one of the obvious things you should do to display your personal brand on social media. However, also listing relevant volunteer experience can greatly increase your chances of getting hired. As a matter of fact, 65 percent of human resources professionals who responded to the Jobvite survey stated they have positively reconsidered a candidate when volunteering or donations to charity was listed on their social profile.
Volunteering is a win-win because it gives you the opportunity to enhance your soft skills and demonstrates to an employer that you are a person of good character. For instance, compassion, the ability to effectively communicate, time management and working well with or leading a team are marketable skills you can get from volunteering. These skills will give you the upper hand over other candidates.
You have to remember that you are a brand. Present yourself on social media like any other brand would. If a recruiter was to look at your LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram and other profiles, what would you stand for? What exactly are you selling about yourself?
If your forte is marketing, some ways you can display your brand is by sharing marketing content on LinkedIn, following top industry leaders on Twitter, engaging in chats on marketing forums, and linking to your other social media accounts. Keep all of your profiles and content consistent, relevant and easily accessible to effectively use social media to get a job. This shows that you know how to market yourself, and you can seamlessly work across various media platforms and audiences.
Another effective way to showcase your brand is by blogging. Notably, 83 percent of HR professionals in the Social Recruiting Survey reported having looked for examples of written or design work when recruiting new talent. Use blog posts to showcase your projects and share your knowledge of the industry through thought out and timely posts. Remember, sharing those posts on social media will only help your personal brand if the content you present clearly defines what you stand for and what you’re capable of.
Social media platforms are a great way to develop your personal brand. They are free, easy to use and everyone has access to them. However, there is another — and arguably better — way to bring all your skills and experiences together that will really make you stand out in the talent search: a personal website.
Rather than having to jump around from site to site, HR and hiring managers can learn more about who you are in one place. As a matter of fact, 74 percent of 2,001 adults who responded in the 2015 Searching for Work in the Digital Era report by PewResearchCenter said it would be easy to highlight all their employment skills using a personal website. You just have to know where to go to get started. Weebly, Wix, Squarespace and Jimdo are easy and effective platforms you can use to build your website.
Think of your website is as an online, interactive portfolio where you can highlight your career aspirations and categorize your work (like photography, videography, blogs, etc.) in neat, easily accessible and visually appealing sections. Building a personal website doesn’t just make it easier for hiring managers to see everything you have to offer, but it also proves that you are serious about taking your personal brand to the next level.
What are other ways you can brand yourself on social media?