[I have covered this topic before, but I am frequently asked by jobseekers how they can incorporate Twitter into their job search efforts. Here are a few tips to get you started.]
Most jobseekers already know that professional social networking sites such as LinkedIn are beneficial to your job search, but Twitter is often overlooked. It is a very powerful job search tool, and best of all – it is FREE!
With the ability to connect you with people across the country or across the world, Twitter enables you to expand your network outside of your immediate circles. It can be used to follow current trends in your industry and identify companies in growth mode, which means they will probably be hiring. This information can help keep you prepared for a job interview.
As most hiring managers and recruiters have a Twitter account, Twitter opens the doors to communication with experts in your field. The platform allows you to brand yourself professionally. Show potential employers why they need YOU! When they see you confidently sharing your expertise, you have an advantage over your competition.
Using Twitter is easy, but there is certain etiquette that must be followed. It may be helpful to spend some time on Twitter to get comfortable with the Twitter platform and watch others’ use of the platform before you start tweeting yourself.
Twitter Best Practices:
1. Set up a designated job search account with a user name that contains your full name. Use the bio section of your profile to brand yourself professionally, and include a headshot. No one takes “eggs” seriously.
2. Your tweets should include helpful information or links to articles of professional interest, with a brief comment or intriguing lead-in. Search Twitter for relevant hashtags (#) and then include them, sparingly, in your tweets.
3. I find it easiest to compose my tweets in Microsoft Word to take advantage of the character count feature. You can use a site such as www.bitley.com to shorten your links.
4. Use Twitter’s search option to find others who share your interests. Be careful to grow your network slowly to avoid looking like a fake spam account. I recommend balancing the number of people you follow with your followers.
5. Follow companies of interest, as well as a few of your competitors, to stay in the loop. Create lists to make it easier to follow these thought leaders.
6. Help promote others. “Retweet” those who become part of your network and they will most likely do the same for you – expanding your network even further.
7. Express gratitude. Thank people for following you and re-tweeting your posts.
8. Frequency is important. Tweet 3-4 times per week to keep yourself “top of mind”.
I hope these tips will help you use Twitter to accelerate your job search. When you use social media to its full potential, there is no telling what opportunities you may come across.Trish Thomas founded The Resume Resource in 2009 to help people develop the tools, strategies and confidence to build satisfying careers. As a Career Coach and Resume Writer, she helps her clients articulate their unique value to stand out from the competition, and guides them through the job search process to make it less overwhelming and more successful. www.the-resume-resource.com