More than ever, job searchers are turning to social media to help them find jobs, reach out, make new contacts, and target companies.
But the very popularity of these sites means that it can also be difficult to stand out from the crowd. They may be convenient, but to effectively use social media on the job hunt you need to know how to use it right.
Here are three key points to keep in mind.
1. Keep contacts and build connections. Social media can help you keep up on your contacts, particularly given how busy everyone is these days. However, it’s not a substitute for face-to-face contact. A phone call goes a lot further than an email, and face-to-face meetings are infinitely better than online meetings.
Social media can help you stay in touch and reach out, but make sure that 20 to 30 percent of your time involves meeting and connecting with people on a face-to-face basis.
2. Social media is a tool, not a solution. Social networking allows you to conduct a dynamic job search, but it’s so much more than that. Think of it as a resource for managing and navigating your career. Use it to expand your network, gather information, and to build a community of like-minded people who will support you both on the job as well as in your job search.
3. It can be a waste of time. If you’re not careful, the internet can quickly devour hours of your day. Carefully monitor how you use social media. If you’re just browsing and clicking around out of curiosity, you’re not really being productive. Start out with a clear goal, a list of tasks, and work at them. Don’t get distracted!