If you’re seeking an executive-level position and you’re not on social media, you need to be. A growing number of employers peruse top candidates’ social media accounts as part of the hiring process. The key to making social media sites work in your favor is to use them strategically.
How Do Employers Use Social Media?
According to one survey of more than 2,300 HR professionals, nearly 40 percent log on to social media to screen applicants. What are they looking for? Employers use social media to learn about the personality and character of potential employees. By the time they log on to do their research, they already know much about your qualifications, education and professional experience, thanks to your resume and cover letter. They check out sites like LinkedIn, Facebook and even Twitter to learn more about who you are as a person.
Will you fit into the corporate culture? Are you as qualified as your resume states you are? Hiring professionals also use social media to look for red flags indicating you would not be a good fit for their company. It goes without saying, if you’re interested in an executive position, make sure your social media accounts don’t include inappropriate photos or comments. Err on the side of caution; review your social media accounts and remove anything that could be construed as unprofessional or unseemly. If you use Facebook to keep in touch with your college buddies, make sure your profile is set to “private.”
How You Can Make Social Media Work in Your Favor
Once you’ve removed questionable content and updated your privacy settings, it’s time to consider how to use social media to your advantage. When you use social media to market yourself, you’ll want to update your online presence frequently. As such, it’s best to choose one platform to focus on. By far, the best platform to use for personal branding for senior level managers is the professional networking site, LinkedIn. Here are some tips to consider when creating or updating your LinkedIn profile.
- Complete your LinkedIn profile 100 percent.
- Summarize your qualifications, but let your personality shine through. Have you accomplished some non-work-related feat (for example, completed seven marathons or climbed Mount Kilimanjaro?) Your LinkedIn profile is an ideal opportunity to show employers you’re well-rounded. Humanize your profile to draw in readers and encourage them to want to learn more about you.
- Incorporate keywords that are frequently found in the job descriptions you’re interested in.
- Expand your network as much as possible by connecting with relatives, friends and former co-workers. The more connections the better.
- Cement your status as an industry expert by participating in discussions or posting to blogs.
Help Is Available
Marketing yourself through social media can begin to seem like a job in itself. If you find yourself feeling overwhelmed, a LinkedIn profile service can help you develop a strong, keyword-dense, value-added LinkedIn profile. If your LinkedIn profile is incomplete, outdated or simply uninspired, contact us. We’re the missing link to make LinkedIn work for you.