As many people can attest to, networking is one of the best ways to find a new job. People will often say, “it’s not what you know, it’s who you know” and while the first part of that statement might not be entirely accurate, the latter half certainly is. Having a wide contact base means access to more opportunities, and more chances to progress upwards on the career ladder, or simply have a change in career direction.
The advent of social networking over the past decade has meant that we are connecting with more and more people in an increasing number of ways, and making the most of social networking sites and apps can certainly point you in the right direction of finding that ideal job.
Some of the more enterprising companies out there have actually begun to start advertising vacancies through their social networking pages and accounts, so keeping abreast of the latest announcements from companies you are targeting is a must.
Social Networking for Business
LinkedIn is the corporate social networking du jour. While the majority of people use social networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook as a means to informally keep in touch with friends and acquaintances, LinkedIn serves a more professional purpose, despite operating in a similar manner.
LinkedIn allows you to connect, or ‘link in’ with past and present business contacts, and allows employers to post vacancies on site. It also allows you to email all of the contacts in your group, which means you can speculatively contact multiple potential employers from one simple platform. While this is useful, remember to use segmenting – tailor a number of different messages to different types of employers.
Prospective employers will always prefer a personal message – one sent out en masse communicates to prospective employers that you don’t have a real interest in their company.
If you are going to use social networking to engage with potential employers, conduct yourself professionally. You may well be out of work and sitting with the curtains drawn, watching Jeremy Kyle with a cup of tea at midday, but be sure not to update your Facebook status or Twitter feed as such. By and large, companies aren’t interested in hiring people who aren’t pro-active and positive about finding work.
Try to present yourself in as professional a manner as possible, and use your status updates as an opportunity to prove how keen you are to find work, as you never know who might be reading them.
Maddie Kortenaar works for a digital marketing agency in Edinburgh and knows all about social media. She wishes all jobseekers out there the best of luck finding the job of their dreams!