Personal Branding: Using Social Media to Land the Job of Your Dreams!

January 10, 2012 at 4:10 pm Leave a comment

After a long hiatus, I am finally getting back to the blogging world….I have such admiration for people who blog on a daily basis-what an outpouring of ideas and creativity! I clearly have fallen a bit short, but it’s the new year, so I am working on posting more regularly!  I really believe that the beginning of a new year is the BEST time for a fresh start. So, I am going to be better about blogging, along with my other resolutions to start a window sill herb garden, run a half-marathon, spend more time creating art and so many more things. (My list takes up an entire piece of notebook paper-front and back! Maybe I’m being overzealous, but I just kept thinking of more things!)

After all, the new year is an opportunity to change all of those things you always think about changing and never do!  So, if you are in the midst of the job search, here’s your chance to reassess: What are you passionate about? What makes you feel energetic and alive? What kind of job have you always dreamed of having?

If you haven’t done so yet, consider taking the e-Discover Personality Assessment (stop by our office and we’ll give you the log-in information) or any number of other personality assessments that are out there on the World Wide Web! (For links to other great assessment tools, see my earlier post, Personality Assessments: The Good, The Bad, and The Ridiculous.) After taking the surveys on e-Discover, make an appointment with someone in our office to go over your results!

Another important thing to think about in the coming year is how you are using social media to aid you in job searching.  I’ve read a lot of articles lately about the importance of creating and maintaining a professional and compelling online presence. Increasingly, people are using social networking sites, like LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter to network and connect with people on a professional level, as well as a social level. This article by Erica Swallow stated that 1 of every 5 employers use social networking to research job candidates. Obviously, this trend is on the rise.   

What this means is that if you are searching and applying for jobs, it is very important to have updated, current profiles on these sites, as well as appropriate content. Many people use the phrase “personal branding” to describe the process of cultivating your unique online image. 

  • LinkedIn is probably the most popular professional networking site out there. It serves as a great resource both for those looking for jobs and those who just want to grow their professional network. On LinkedIn, you can create a profile that looks a lot like a resume-you list your education, jobs, and experiences. But, like Facebook, you can connect with people you know-coworkers, friends, family members, anyone! LinkedIn also allows people to write recommendations (called “endorsements” on this site) for you. You can search for jobs and companies, as well as join groups based on your educational background or fields in which you’d like to work. In my personal experience, more and more people are using LinkedIn, so create a profile and see what it’s all about!
  • It seems as though pretty much everyone has a Facebook page now. Facebook  remains largely focused on social networking, but there are some tools on this site for job seekers. One of these is the Social Jobs Partnership, which I mentioned a few posts ago. Facebook also has a professional networking offshoot: Branch Out. This network allows you to log in using your Facebook information and connects you to friends you already have on your normal profile. It works like any other Facebook application and allows you to invite friends who haven’t already joined, should you wish to do so. Similar to LinkedIn, you list education, job experience and skills on your Branch Out profile and can search for jobs and companies. This video entitled “How to accelerate your career by using Branch Out” gives a good overview of the tools and features available.
  • The only thing I knew about Twitter before a few months ago was that celebrities often used it to share their every thought with the masses… However, since creating an account for the CESC, I’ve realized that there are a lot of great job search tools on this site as well! (Here is our CESC Twitter page!) There are quite a few people out there tweeting about jobs-recruiters looking for people to hire, career coaches with job tips, and people seeking jobs as well! Here is an interesting article about creating a 140-Character “Twesume” (that’s Twitter and resume combined)! Using this tool could help you to get an employer interested and continue to put your name out there. Here’s a list of some of my favorite “tweeters”: Inside Jobs, Career Builder, Brandyourself, and TwitJobSearch. Check them out-they all provide excellent insight and many links to articles about every aspect of job searching!

There are numerous other social networking sites out there (Google+, Tumblr, Instagram, etc.) that can definitely be used as well when creating your online personal brand!

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