5 Effective Strategies to Master Your Job Search Using Social Networking

Find a Job Magnifying Glass

If you’re on the lookout for employment, using social networking to aid your job search is a must. In a previous blog post, we covered the reasons you should incorporate social media as a vital component of your job search strategy.

But what if you know how important social media is for finding jobs, but you simply do not know where to start? It’s a big world out there on the Internet! If you’re new to the social media scene, we’re here to help by sharing 5 ways to get your social feet wet and get a job at the same time.

5 Savvy Tips to Find a Job Using Social Media

1. Use LinkedIn as Your Virtual Resume— Social networking may seem intimidating, but once you figure out what the point is and how to use it, it is actually extremely useful. If you only sign up for one social media account to help your job search, let it be LinkedIn. LinkedIn is a social networking website designed for professional and business use. You do not go on LinkedIn to share memes, chat with your friends or post selfies. You use LinkedIn to network with other working professionals who want to connect on a business level. You should create a LinkedIn account and populate your profile with information about what you have to offer. Since you simply fill in information, it may be easier than starting a new resume. Don’t forget to add keywords so your name will be pulled up in employer or recruiter searches. Once you have filled out your profile, you will be referred to jobs that fit your background and skill set. You can also supply potential employers with your LinkedIn URL when applying for jobs.

2. Follow Employers You Want to Work for— Employers are increasingly posting their job openings on social media. Want to find out when an opening exists? Follow employers you would like to work for on your social media accounts, especially Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, and LinkedIn. Following potential employers on social media is also an ideal way to learn more about the agency and to be knowledgeable if you ever get the chance to interview. You may also want to follow job sites that post employment positions, as well as any other professional organizations that may have knowledge of potential openings. DiscoverCorrections.com posts all openings from the job board on our Twitter and Facebook pages, so make sure to follow us to get a continuous feed of new listings. We also highlight specific listings from our job board on Google Plus and in our LinkedIn group.

3. Search for Jobs Using Hashtags and Keywords— Social networking sites have made it very easy to filter through an extensive amount of data in a short amount of time. One way to access job listings is to use hashtags. Those are the words with a # symbol in front of them and that appear to be linked. When you are on a social networking site and click on one of these linked hashtags, you will be shown all posts featuring that hashtag. For example, if you see a job post of ours that has the hashtag #jobs, you can click on it. You will then be provided with similar posts from various sources on the social media site that feature the hashtag. All of the major social media sites except LinkedIn currently utilize hashtags. A website like Tagboard makes it possible to search for a single hashtag and pull up related posts on numerous social networking sites. Another way to search is simply by using keywords. You can search by job title, field of work, location, or any other word that describes the type of job you are interested in.

4. Make Strategic Online Connections— If you’re looking for a job, one of the primary benefits of social networking is the ability to network online. Instead of attending networking events or hiring/job fairs, you can conduct your job search online every day. Take the time to connect with others in your chosen field or who work for your desired employer. A resource like Community Corrections Connect, an online peer-to-peer learning community, is ideal for this purpose. Seek the knowledge and information they have to offer. Let them know you’re in the job market and inquire if they have any leads. LinkedIn is particularly helpful for professional networking, but you can establish these vital relationships on any online platform. Take advantage of this opportunity to network and use it to benefit your job search. However, make sure to always do so with respect and consideration for others and their time. Remember that relationships are a two-way street, so be ready to reciprocate and assist others if they need it, which will only enhance the trust and solidarity you have been cultivating.

5. Build Your Online Brand through Interaction— We’ve discussed in the past how employers may do an online search to find out more about who you are as a person and professional. This may be bad news for some, but it’s actually an opportunity for those savvy enough to take advantage of it. Each person who uses the Internet develops a social or digital footprint, particularly when they are active on websites and social networking sites. The key is to make sure your social media footprint benefits your personal brand. Build a positive reputation online by participating in interactions you would be glad for potential employers to see. Talk about your education, your professional interests, your job search, and your career. Communicate with those who may be in the position to offer you or recommend you for an employment position. Participate in Twitter chats and Google Hangouts that may assist with your job search. Always remember that potential employers may be watching (and you may not even know it!), so utilize these social platforms strategically to further your career goals.

Social networking has become such a functional tool for opening up doors in ways we could not even imagine a few years ago. As employers continue to acknowledge the usefulness of social media for recruiting qualified job candidates, those in the job market should focus their efforts on fully leveraging this invaluable resource to master their job search.

What questions do you have about using social networking for your job search?
What other ways can you use social media to find a job?

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