Friday Favorites – Five Worst LinkedIn Photos

As we wrap up the theme of LinkedIn this month, I wanted to leave you with five last tips about what kind of photos you shouldn’t have on your LinkedIn profile, and why they’re bad.

The Group Photo

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Which one of these lovely ladies’ profile am I viewing?! Don’t leave potential employers confused! While it’s understandable that you want to impress potential employers with how social you are, leave that for Facebook and Twitter.

The Cropped Photo

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This one is a profile picture favorite, for any social network. It looks awkward, weird, and completely unprofessional. You literally have a hanging limb in your photo. I totally understand that you might look gorgeous in that one photo that you took that night, and only a Photoshop magician would be able to remove that awkward arm, but please, for the love of professional networking social media sites, stop with the cropped profile photo!

Distance Photo

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While the tree is lovely, and having McGraw Hall in the photo will show your Warhawk pride, what employers really want to see is your face. Even if you’re at the Grand Canyon, the Appalachian Mountains, or in the middle of Times Square, the background should be the least interesting aspect of your photo. Keep the focus of your profile photo on your face.

A Photo of Your Pet

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Don’t. Just don’t. No matter how cute your pet is, resist!

Not Having a Photo

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Yes, not having a photo is just as bad as having one with red Solo cups in it. As bad as it might sound, this is one instance where what you look like is important. So throw on that blazer, ask a friend who’s handy with a camera to help you out, and snap a few photos.

Or better yet, attend our free LinkedIn photoshoot on November 20 in the UC!

The other social media student manager and myself will be taking professional photos for free for you to use for your LinkedIn profile, or any other online profile! Please come and take advantage of this free service and get to know more about what Career & Leadership Development can offer you!

For more tips like these, check out The Worst LinkedIn Photos You Can Have.

Photos by UWW Career.

Your Best Professional Self

Recently I’ve noticed that more students are creating LinkedIn accounts. This is good! LinkedIn is a wonderful way to present your best professional self to the world. It works, and actually provides the reader with a more complete picture of you than does your resume.

LinkedIn is a great tool if used effectively, therefore we want to use the LinkedIn functions fully so we can more thoughtfully present who we are to others. Here is some very basic advice to new users that will help you successfully use this wonderful professional networking tool.

Professional / Graduate /Designer

Personalize Your Messages: I receive several requests each week from people asking me to join their network. It seems to me that 99% of those who contact me use one of the standard messages from LinkedIn, such as “I’d like to add you to my professional network”, or the slightly more familiar “Since you are a person I trust, I wanted to invite you to join my network on LinkedIn”. Seriously, you trust me? We just met. I must really come across as a trustworthy individual. When someone personalizes their message, it really stands out, and makes me want to accept that connection immediately. Personalizing your message is a great way to begin the relationship, and it helps you be unique in my mind.

Make Your Profile 100% Complete: Upload your resume; Use a professional profile picture; Complete the skills section, etc. Be honest, be thoughtful and intentional, because this is about how you show up as your best professional self.

Join LinkedIn Groups: Groups are a great way to connect on LinkedIn, and are a way to connect with professionals presently working in your desired field. Some groups have fairly vibrant conversations that can provide you with a perspective about that particular field, the work, or an employer. Groups can also help you identify others to whom you may reach out to in the future, thereby building a solid professional network as you begin your career.

Lastly, Learn About LinkedIn: UW-Whitewater alumnus Wayne Breitbarth wrote a very helpful book titled “The Power Formula for LinkedIn Success.” This book is a must-read in my mind, and can help you learn about the various features that LinkedIn offers, which are extensive. Talk with people who have great profiles, check out others profiles and constantly work to improve and enhance yours. Stay active and keep moving forward with how you use LinkedIn. You’ll reach a critical mass that will begin to pay dividends in the near future.

Photo by thinkpublic.

Social Media – Friend or Foe?

This post was written by Career & Leadership Development staff Nicole Golden and Jan Bilgen.

For each of us, social media technologies create a number of opportunities to share, foster, learn and connect. With each opportunity there is a chance you might enhance your life or complicate it. Here are a few suggestions to insure that your social media interactions enhance your personal and professional life.

Social Media

No matter what, once it’s out there you can never take it back

Just because Facebook has a delete option on your posts and comments or on pictures doesn’t make it 100% true. Anything on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, etc. can be downloaded, or emailed around to any number of others or sites. Think of all the great and witty tweets or posts you’ve seen and how they’ve gone viral. What if that was a picture of you doing something questionable? Or a post or comment that was hurtful? Written in anger? Think twice before posting. Ask yourself, what do I hope to “add” to my presence on social media with this?

Consider multiple profiles

Separation isn’t always as a bad thing. If you don’t want to edit your statuses or think too hard before you click, consider having multiple profiles. Be very sure that those you “friend” or “follow” on each of those profiles should be there. I have a professional Twitter account where I only tweet work-related items of interest. LinkedIn connections that you accept should only be professional contacts if you choose to follow this approach. Because social media is an amazing tool to connect, most people start with friends and then blend in business connections, but consider the opposite. Seek professional connections first.  Starting a professional “profile” on a social media outlets will not only let you create your personal brand it will let you protect it.

Don’t let social media replace face to face connections

In today’s world, it is much too easy to only connect and communicate with people via social media. However, it requires technical interest and resources so might not be everyone’s first choice in connecting. Social media contacts should broaden in number and in quality your relationships. Relationships must have direct connections in order to be improved and maintained. That means face to face opportunities, phone calls, Skype, etc. in addition to what you are posting and tweeting. In order to have impact on what others perceive about you, you must be able to interpret their non-verbals and have a higher chance of being understood.

Know that social media (i.e Facebook and Twitter) can be huge time drains and drama vortex

Time seems to slip away if you’re plugged in 100% all the time. Being too “plugged-in” can hurt the task at hand, like homework or work in general. You may seem distracted to those you are around and is seldom positive multitasking. Use of social media can also impact your friendships in a negative way. It oftentimes is a method that individuals use to drag others into their problems or arguments. They also use it in a passive aggressive manner. Beef with something? Find a non-social media way to vent or clear the air of frustration- talk in person.

Remember, social media was created to connect and make the world more open and connected. According to Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook founder, “We hope to strengthen how people relate to each other and even if our mission sounds big, it starts small — with the relationship between two people.” So take a minute before you click, post and celebrate and make those relationships strong and productive!

Photo by Yoel Ben-Avraham.

Friday Favorites – Five Social Media No-No’s

Raise your hand if you have Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn. Raise your hand if you’ve ever posted something you regretted. Now, I can’t see you reading this, but I can imagine you have posted or tweeted something you later regretted, whether it was bashing your former boss, your ex-boyfriend, your professors, your parents, or the driver who cut right in front of you during rush hour.

Bad-mouthing (or should we call it bad-tweeting?) is just one common mistake that many people make online. The thing about having social media accounts is that it lets you ‘hide.’ It provides you a sheath. This can be both good and bad, but when it comes to entering the professional world, which many upperclassmen are about to experience, you shouldn’t have to hide behind the computer.

Social Media apps

The hard truth is this: employers WILL not only Google you, but they will search you on Facebook, Twitter, your personal blog if you have one, and of course, LinkedIn. You do not want a potential employer to see a negative tweet and exile you from the list of promising candidates. Here are five short and sweet tips for what not to do on social media:

Don’t Bash Anyone

This includes former coworkers and supervisors and current coworkers and supervisors. I know it can be tempting to post something about how the person who beat you for the big promotion sounds like a hyena when she laughs, but keep it to yourself or tell a close friend (someone who isn’t your coworker, preferably).

Why not try talking to that person directly about what made you upset? It will show maturity and professionalism, whereas bad-mouthing someone on social media will make you seem immature and ignorant. Also, what’s worse than being called into your supervisor’s office because you tweeted about how your supervisor is just terrible at running meetings? You might get fired, so there’s that.

Don’t Use Expletives

This one should be common sense, right? Wrong. So many people my age swear to their heart’s content on Twitter and Facebook. It’s tasteless, unclassy, and extremely unprofessional. Also, keep slang terms and terms you’ve found on Urban Dictionary down to a bare, BARE minimum (I’m looking at you, YOLO).

I understand that the occasional swear word can help in some extreme cases, but keep it to a minimum. Unless you plan on being a comedian. And if you are, good luck with that.

Don’t Post Inappropriate Pictures

This one should also be common sense, but I see this on Facebook way more often than I’d like to. I understand that many college students want to celebrate their 21st birthday, graduation, and St Patrick’s Day and Homecoming. I get it – I’m a college student, too! Take as many pictures as you’d like – but make sure that the worst ones don’t end up on Facebook. Employers may interpret your constant party pictures as wildly inappropriate and something that wouldn’t fit in to their office culture.

Not sure about which photos to keep and which to delete? Check out this article – 12 Facebook Photos You Should Delete Now

Don’t Pick Fights

We’ve all seen them – the infamous Facebook arguments. Someone posts about a controversial topic, someone else comments about it, more people comment, and all hell breaks loose. While these are undoubtedly hilarious, they’re also embarrassing if you’re caught in the middle of one. Facebook is not the place to have an argument, especially one about politics or religion. I know it’s hard to resist, but your professionalism depends on it!

Don’t Post Without Proofreading

While having a post with a few typos isn’t as bad as having a post filled with swear words and inappropriate pictures, it’s still a bad thing. Potential employers will see your text speak and wonder if you ever went to college. You do not want potential employers to wonder about that sort of thing! So, just like you would with any document, essay, article, or e-mail, proofread your work before you hit ‘send.’

One way to let your feelings out is to write on the computer what you’re mad about. You can even go so far as enter it into the Facebook post box or Twitter tweet box, but before you hit ‘send,’ delete it. Getting your feelings out can make you feel a hundred times better.

I’m not saying that you should not have a personality when you tweet – because by all means, tweet to your heart’s content! But be smart about what you post. Your social media presence should be squeaky clean, especially for those of you entering the workforce!

This post was very negative, but next week’s post will be all positive! It will be all about how to post things of substance, how to connect with potential employers, and how to have a positive experience on social media.

Photo by Jason Howie.

Personalizing Your LinkedIn Account

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LinkedIn, or any professional networking for that matter, is all about selling yourself. You have to convince people that you are the right fit for the job or internship opening.

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Marketing yourself as a desirable product is really what you’re trying to accomplish on LinkedIn. Every marketing major knows the four P’s of marketing: Product, Price, Placement, and Promotion. Those 4 elements are at  the core of successfully selling any product. However, there is a now a fifth P: Personalization. Personalization requires a connection between the marketer (you) and the consumer (the prospective employer). Personalizing your LinkedIn account is easy! Here are three easy steps to achieving personalization perfection on LinkedIn.

1. Send personal messages.

When you click to connect with someone on LinkedIn, an automatic message is included with your request to connect. Do not fall victim to sending the standard message. First, make sure to delete the automated message. Next, write a short (only a few sentences) message to the person you want to connect with. If you’ve met them in person, bring up something unique the two of you chatted about. If you haven’t met them in person, tell them why you want to connect. Are they in the field you’re interested in? Do you have a strong mutual connection? Make sure to let them know you aren’t serial adding people on LinkedIn to get more connections. They need to feel like their connection means something to you.

personal message

2. Add your interests and hobbies to your profile.

While LinkedIn is a professional network, you should also share some personal things about yourself. I don’t advocate sharing deeply personal things about yourself, like how much money you make or the details of your relationships. Reveal the personal things about yourself that speak about your character and who you really are. There’s an “additional info” section where you can slip in a few personal details about yourself. Include hobbies that  you genuinely enjoy (e.g. blogging, running, crafting, hiking, etc.). Adding these personal touches can help a recruiter learn a little more about what kind of person you are. It can also lead to a great connection! Recruiters like hiring people who are like them, so if you share a common hobby they may be more apt to hire you.

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3. Be active on LinkedIn.

LinkedIn is a social networking site, so be social! It’s important that you not only make an awesome LinkedIn page, but that you also interact with people on it. Post industry-relevant information, say congrats on people’s new jobs or accomplishments, and endorse your connection’s skill sets. Staying active on LinkedIn will help your connections stay fresh. If your connections see you posting information, or if you endorse their skills, they’ll be more likely to look at your page. If you’re feeling extra ambitious you can take it a step further and write a recommendation for someone. Maybe they’ll return the favor!

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Photos by Marco Ghitti and UWW Career.

How to Network on LinkedIn

These ten tips, taken from LinkedIn, are too good to pass up, so I had to post them on here. All credit goes to LinkedIn for creating these tips.

Great day at LinkedIn HQ!

Whether you just created a LinkedIn profile or have had one for years, using these tips to network on LinkedIn can be helpful for everyone!

1. 100% Complete = 40x More Opportunities
You can’t build connections if people don’t know who you are or see what you have to offer. Your LinkedIn profile is your online business card, resume, and letters of recommendation all in one. Users with complete profiles are 40 times more likely to receive opportunities through LinkedIn.

2. You’re More Experienced Than You Think
The more information you provide, the more people will find reasons to connect with you. Think really broadly about all your experiences, including summer jobs, unpaid internships, volunteer work, and student organizations. You never know what might catch someone’s eye.

3. Use Your Inbox
Contrary to popular belief, networking doesn’t mean reaching out to strangers. The best networks begin with those you know and trust, and then grow based on personal referrals. Start building your LinkedIn network by uploading your online address book and connecting to friends, relatives, internship colleagues, and professionals you know in the ‘real world.’

4. Get Personal
As you build your connections on LinkedIn, always customize your connection requests with a friendly note and, if necessary, a reminder of where you met or what organization you have in common. If you’re being referred by a mutual friend, write a brief intro of who you are and why you’d like to connect. You’ll impress people with your personal touch.

5. Join the ‘In’ Crowd
Another way to form new online relationships is to join LinkedIn Groups. Start with your university group – alums love to connect with students – and then find volunteer organizations or professional associations you already belong to. As a member, you can comment on discussions, find exclusive job listings, and meet people who share common interests.

6. Lend a (Virtual) Hand
As you build connections and group memberships, think about what you can do to support others. Comment on a classmate’s status update or forward a job listing to a friend. You’ll find that your generosity is always rewarded (and you’ll feel good about it!)

7. Update Your Statues #Early and #Often
Networking is not just about who you know; it’s about who knows you. Stay on other people’s radar screens by updating your LinkedIn status at least once a week. You can do this directly on LinkedIn or by linking your Twitter account and tweeting with #in. Mention events you’re attending, projects you’ve completed, and other professional news.

8. Question (And Answer) Everything
LinkedIn’s Answers feature is a great place to seek advice from a wide variety of people all around the world. You can also show the world what you have to offer by answering people’s questions about a topic where you have some expertise. The more active you are in Answers, the more people will view your profile and want to connect with you.

9. Do Your Homework
Before an informational interview, a job interview, or a networking get-together, use LinkedIn to learn about the background and interests of the people you’re scheduled to meet. Access Company Pages to research organizations and their employees, and use Advanced Search to find things you have in common with people you’re meeting.

10. Now Step Away From The Computer…
Be sure to support your online networking with real human contact. Set up phone calls, attend live events, send snail mail notes to people you interact with on LinkedIn. Remember that online methods should supplement, not replace, in-person relationship building.

Photo by Link Humans.

Friday Favorites – 5 Favorite Tips to Succeed on LinkedIn

LinkedIn is the top professional social media network out there. Surprised? Probably not. Here are five tips for you to take the most advantage of this website.

Succeed on LinkedIn

Have an Appropriate Picture

  • One thing that I see all too often are inappropriate, awkward, or just plain terrible headshots on LinkedIn. Having a great picture with a webpage full of text will really balance things out. People will also be able to place a face with a name if they view your profile and then meet you sometime later.
  • If you need a professional headshot, Shannon, the other social media student manager, and I will be providing free headshots at our LinkedIn photoshoot sometime in November. We hosted a LinkedIn headshot photoshoot at the Hawk Career Fair last week and it was a great success! More than 200 students were photographed. You can view the photos on our Facebook page, and stay up to date on the next LinkedIn Headshot Photoshoot through our social media channels.

Make a Unique URL

  • One cool thing you can do on LinkedIn is to create a personalized URL. When you first make a LinkedIn profile, your URL will look something like: LinkedIn.com/329849351982. This looks really messy! Here are step-by-step instructions on how to do this:
  1. Hover over Profile and click Edit Profile.
  2. Click Edit next to your given URL.
  3. There will be a box on the right side of the screen saying Your Public Profile URL. Underneath, Customize Your Public Profile URL
  4. Here is where you can personalize what comes after LinkedIn.com. Most people use their full names when creating a new URL.
  • By personalizing your URL on LinkedIn, it will help your profile look more professional. People will remember LinkedIn.com/KelseyWelke rather than LinkedIn.com/293848611232. This process is really easy but many people don’t take advantage of it.

Give and Receive Recommendations

  • This is probably my favorite aspect to LinkedIn. When you first filled out your profile, you might have listed some skills you possess. These show up under the Skills & Expertise section in your profile. Once you start getting connected with people, they may recommend you for your skills. This is similar to when you +1 on Google+.
  • It’s always nice to get recommended for your skills by your peers and colleagues. As an etiquette tip, always recommend them for the skills they have back!

Join Groups

  • If you’re really interested in your field of study or a specific aspect of it, join a group that is catered to that. Groups on LinkedIn are great ways to connect with your university’s alumni, professionals, staff members, and potential employers.
  • But, don’t go overboard. You only need to join as many groups as you want to have networks in the professional world. You don’t need to join the 3,701 Public Relations groups – only join the ones you are really interested in.

Read Your Home Feed

  • Treat LinkedIn’s home page like you would your Facebook wall. Scroll through it and see if anything catches your eye. Check out some articles, see what your friends are up to in the professional world, and get a feel for what the professional side of LinkedIn is really about.
  • Pro tip: ‘Liking’ an article or commenting is a great idea! Also, if you know of any articles that are relevant to your field of study or things that you want to share with your network, go ahead and share it! You never know who will ‘like’ or comment on it, and who knows what could spark from that conversation.

How To Create a LinkedIn Profile

So you’ve created a Facebook page, you have a Twitter account, you’re on Instagram, Foursquare, and Pinterest, but why aren’t you on LinkedIn?

Turns out, creating a professional account is just as important as having accounts on the ‘fun’ social networks. LinkedIn is the world’s largest professional social network. There are more than 225 million users, and you should be one of them!

Here is a step-by-step tutorial on how to create a LinkedIn profile.

How To LinkedIn

This is the first thing you’ll see when you click onto the LinkedIn website.
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Yes, creating an account is free and doesn’t take much time at all. After you’ve entered your information and click Join Now, this screen will pop up.

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You can choose to add contacts from your e-mail address contact book, or you can skip this step.

This will be the next page that you will be sent to.

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The neat thing about LinkedIn is that you can follow celebrities who you are interested in, sort of like ‘liking’ pages on Facebook. You can always come back and follow individuals if you don’t want to do it at this time.

Nice! This is similar to what your profile will look like so far.

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You’ll be asked a series of questions, which will be in blue boxes above your profile picture. You can answer, add a picture of yourself, or skip and answer later.

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If you click your profile and then click Edit, this screen will pop up. You can always go back and edit sections of your profile by clicking the Edit button or the Improve Your Profile button. You can add parts about what kind of work you did at your last job, you can add college courses, you can add leadership positions you’ve had, and more.

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When you click on the Profile tab, this is similar to what you will see.

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You’ll soon find out that LinkedIn is more than just a social network. It’s more than a place you can post your resume. LinkedIn is a place where you can connect with your peers and staff and faculty, learn more about what kind of career you want to get into through blog posts, comments and special interest groups, and network with professionals who are in the field of interest you want to get into.

I hope this basic tutorial has helped you start your LinkedIn profile! Throughout the month of October we will be posting many more blog posts about how to network by using LinkedIn, sample invitations when asking someone to be your connection, good and bad profile pictures, and many more tips. Stay up to date with other helpful LinkedIn and social media articles by following us on Twitter and Facebook!

5 LinkedIn Tips for Upcoming Graduates

This post was written by Thomas Wolff. Thomas Wolff is the Managing Editor of Resume Mastermind, a boutique resume writing firm that works with clients ranging from students to senior executives to create interview-winning resumes, job search letters, bios, and social media profiles.

As upperclassman start thinking about internships and their first position after graduation, it’s more important than ever to start building a professional online presence. Employers want to pre-qualify each candidate, and with the availability of online information out there, even if you don’t share your online profiles, they are going to do a search for your name anyway to see what pops up. So why not point them in the right direction by proactively establishing a professional profile that you can confidently include in your resume and/or cover letter?

While Facebook and Twitter are fun and great ways to share photos and personal information with your closest friends and family members, LinkedIn is the one online platform that can actually shape your future. LinkedIn is the biggest and most powerful social network specifically designed for professionals. With over 200 million users, it is likely that every company you may be thinking of applying to right now will have at least one employee on LinkedIn.

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Here are six tips to make the most of LinkedIn as you prepare to enter the professional world.

1) Understand LinkedIn’s Value In The Social World

LinkedIn isn’t necessarily “sexy,” and it’s unlikely that you’ll spend hours each day browsing the site, like you would Facebook. Nor is it a source of immediate gratification or entertainment, as photos, videos, and constant status updates aren’t a primary component of the platform. LinkedIn is basically a dynamic version of your online resume, enabling you to research, connect, and engage with the people and companies who can help propel your career.

2) Write An Informative Profile Headline

Your headline should give people a brief and clear way to understand the professional version of you. Think of the headline as a slogan for your professional profile. You can get creative, using something like, “Emerging marketing practitioner with interests in public relations and marketing communications.” Or, you can include more specific information: “Finance student at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater seeking a position in investment banking in the Chicago area.”

3) Use A Professional Photo

To prove your credibility and attract the attention of employers, it is important to build and promote a professional appearance. Use a professional quality headshot, not an angled picture that you snapped with your cell phone in front of the bathroom mirror, and definitely not a Facebook profile picture of you out on the town. If you can’t afford to pay for a professional photoshoot, then find a friend who knows their way around a digital camera. Check out some truly awful LinkedIn headshots.

4) Tell A Story In The Summary Section

The summary presents a great opportunity to share with your network who you are, what you’re aspiring to do after graduation, and how your unique experiences and academic achievements will help you get there. Be clear and specific about what you want. People are much more likely to find you and to help you if you state you’re “in search of a brand management position with a leading consumer product goods company” than they are if you say you are just “looking for a job.”

5) Show You’ve Done Something Worthwhile

In a perfect world, you’ve already completed a fantastic summer internship with a company that aligns perfectly with your targeted post-graduation job. Unfortunately, not everybody can say that, so include any relevant volunteer work, extracurricular activities, college jobs, or freelance work you can and describe the impact that you had in each role.

6) Build Your Network

I would recommend starting to connect with your core network of classmates, friends, colleagues and others whom you have in your immediate circles. Then you can grow your reach and influence through direct engagements, sharing content, and following groups. If the people you are reaching out to do not know you, it’s important to give them a reason to talk to you, and provide the reason you want to talk to them. Also, don’t be shy about asking for recommendations from your colleagues, managers, or professors.

Like any good media platform, LinkedIn is intuitive and easy to use. Any time you invest now in crafting your profile and connecting with those who can open the right doors for you will pay dividends once your job search is underway.

If you would like help setting up your own LinkedIn account, schedule an appointment with one of the career counselors!

Photo by Southern Arkansas University.

Friday Favorites – Using Social Media In Your Job Search

Did you know that there are over 1 billion Facebook users? That there are 340 million new tweets per day? That 4 billion YouTube videos are viewed every day? And that 92% of companies use LinkedIn, Facebook, and/or Twitter for recruiting?!

Social media has a huge part in our lives (especially if you’re a social media junkie like I am!). Besides posting embarrassing pictures of your friends on Facebook, tweeting about what you had for lunch or looking up videos of babies laughing, social media can also be used for job searching, and here’s how:

Social Media Explained (with Donuts)

Facebook

  • If you’re passionate about working for a specific company, ‘like’ their Facebook page. They will post information about what they’re up to and possible jobs that they need filled. Even if you don’t find a job through their Facebook page, it’s a great resource to use to get informed about the company.
  • It will never hurt to post an update about what kind of job you’re looking for and the experience you have. Who knows – one of your friends might know of a job perfect for you!
  • Join groups on Facebook. They are similar to groups on LinkedIn. You can join groups specific to the industry you want to get into or of hobbies you’re interested in. Networking with other group members and being active in the group is a surefire way to help you find a job that you’ll love.
  • As a last tip, make sure you manipulate your privacy settings to make sure potential employers only see what you want them to see. It’s not a bad idea to untag yourself from those embarrassing photos from last night’s party either!

Twitter

Twitter might be an unconventional site to use when searching for a job, but it has more resources than you know. Twitter might seem confusing and silly. I definitely cringe when I see my friends posting hour-by-hour updates of their life. But if you tweet effectively, it won’t be hard to form relationships and find jobs that you’re interested in.

  • Fill out your profile. That includes adding a picture, adding a cover photo, and a description of where you live and what you do. I guarantee employers will spend more time on your profile than on someone who still has a picture of an egg for their profile picture.
  • Follow companies you’re interested in. They will post job openings, advice, information about their company. Once you’ve got a steady Twitter account, start interacting with those companies.
  • Use hashtags effectively, such as #hiring, #jobopening and #joblisting. Check out these 50 Hottest Twitter Hashtags for Job Seekers for more hashtags.
  • ‘A lot of successful Twitter job stories actually end with the punchline, “I wasn’t even looking for a job.” In many cases, these lucky new hires just found interesting opportunities serendipitously, which makes sense given that it’s Twitter we’re talking about,’ according to 6 Ways To Score A Job Through Twitter on Mashable.com.
  • Twitter is a great place to showcase your personality. Tweet articles you find interesting, stay away from retweeting too much, and interact with a substantial number of followers. Remember – you are what you tweet.

LinkedIn

LinkedIn is the most popular career-related site, so it’s no wonder that every day more than 86,000 users join LinkedIn and 89% of recruiters have hired through LinkedIn. This website is all about developing relationships with colleagues and potential employers. If you’re new to LinkedIn, these tips will help you get started.

  • Make sure you fill out your profile completely. More employers will check out your profile if it is 100% complete.
  • Don’t forget to add a picture of yourself! And not a picture of you from a group photo and then cropping out the others so it’s just a picture of you with random people’s arms. Get a friend to take professional photos of you.
  • Connect with your friends. Once you have a stable profile, then you can connect with employers.
  • You can endorse your friends for skills such as blogging, photo-editing, customer service, or many others. They’ll be more likely to endorse you for skills you have experience in.
  • Join groups. There are groups for pretty much every interest or hobby! You can connect with people who have the same interests as you and possibly find a job through your group friends!

YouTube

One unique thing about YouTube is that 64% of people will finish watching a video but only 24% of people will finish reading an article online, via Classy Career Girl.

  • If you’re a musician, use YouTube to your advantage! It doesn’t take a lot of work to record a video of you singing or playing an instrument and upload it to YouTube.
  • Try the Justin Bieber approach – post and hope. Justin Bieber was discovered on YouTube and is now an international pop star! It doesn’t hurt to post a video of yourself doing what you do best and then hope that someone famous watches it and wants to collaborate with you.
  • You can also create a video resume if you’re planning on going into a creative field. Make sure it’s short and appropriate, according to 5 Tips for Creating a Video Resume via Mashable.
  • Enter YouTube contests! This is a great way to show the contest host how you shine.

Blogger/WordPress/Weebly/Tumblr

These blog and professional profile sites are there to give you space to publish and highlight your work, photography, prose, poetry, or anything you wish! If you’re thinking that only nerds write and read blogs, you may be right, but having a place where your work is published may give you an advantage to those without a unique profile like this.

  • If you’re new to blog sites, I’ll help to clear up some confusion. BloggerWordPressWeebly and Tumblr are blog sites each unique in their own way. If you plan on blogging every other day, Blogger would be a good website to use, but if you want to create an online profile, Weebly might be better for you. Figure out which one works best for what kind of online profile you want to create.
  • Blogs are great to use if you’re going into journalism, public relations, communications or arts. You need a virtual space to spotlight your writing or artwork, and a blog is a great place to do that!
  • A blog might be just what you need to stand out from the rest of the candidates. ‘Just as it looks like your chances of interview are hit and miss, your blog propels you into top spot! Scanning the content you’ve posted, the recruiter is increasingly convinced you have the expertise they are looking for in this domain. Your blog has endorsed your candidacy in a way that your simple LinkedIn profile alone could never have achieved!’ From Forget LinkedIn Profiles – What Your Career Really Needs is… from Social Hire.
  • Don’t forget to link your online profile to your social media sites, and regularly post or tweet your blog posts to Facebook or Twitter to get more traffic to your blog.

If you have a social media profile like these, why not use it to your advantage and start using it to search for jobs?! Let me know how it goes, and if I’m missing any tips you’d like to share, don’t hesitate to email me at MediaCLD@uww.edu.

Photo by Chris Lott.