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Using Social Media to Boost Your Career

Attention students: don’t let your career aspirations dwindle because you’ve been told you aren’t qualified enough for a role. Your career is bound to flourish if you take advantage of the tools that exist to help you leverage your current career situation. Need a place to start? Leverage social media and the power of influence.

Social media forums allow you to express thoughts, connect with leaders, and build out social circles with like-minded individuals. We’re living in a technologically-savvy society, so now is the time to use it to your advantage. Adecco’s Way to Work initiative offers great resources for starting conversations about employment, and learning how to leverage your communities online. Wondering how to launch your career though social media? Here’s how.

Social media was made for networking, and it shouldn’t come as a surprise with the word “social” in the name. How do you turn your accounts into a tool to sell yourself?  Start with a revamp of your profile, because companies are looking at these sites to get a better sense of who you are before they make a hiring decision. They will be scanning your profile for inappropriate language, risky pictures, and any other clues that you’re not the right fit for the role or organization. They want to see what things you are talking about, how you socialize with others, and who you are interacting with. If you haven’t focused on tailoring your social profiles to suit your current career path, now’s the time to start your strategy.

How do you start a social media reputation strategy?

Get a profile: First thing’s first. If you aren’t on any social media websites, you need to sign up. Even if you want to bypass the traditional resources like Facebook and Twitter, at the very least you should be engaging with like-minded individuals on LinkedIn to show others your opinions on topics that are relevant to your career of focus.

Have profiles? Do an audit: Get rid of the pictures of you indulging in an alcoholic beverage or climbing a tree in the middle of the night. Did you express your opinions on religious or political issues recently? Everyone has opinions and a right to them, but companies have opinions on these things too and care very deeply about public image. If your opinions and values don’t align with theirs, they’re unlikely to hire you. Keep this in mind when you’re posting and if you’ve posted something controversial, think about the message behind the post and if you think others aren’t comfortable seeing it, remove it.

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Change your privacy settings: Make some of your profiles private if you don’t want to use them as leverage for your social reputation. Not everything has to be public, and certain forums are meant more for networking than others. If you can’t decide how to proceed, try keeping Facebook private and use Twitter and LinkedIn as public networking tools.

Start posting relevant content: Post content about the career you want to have, or the industry you want to be in. This way, you’ll show your expertise on these topics while demonstrating your ability to stay current. Staying current and relevant is essential, especially when sharing news online.

Engage with industry leaders: For anyone wanting to start a professional career, LinkedIn is a channel devoted to professional development and networking, so join some groups and get in on some online conversations. If you join a professional group and start a chat to draw in industry professionals, you are opening up the door for other influential people to contribute to the conversation. It’s important to nurture your relationship with senior professionals because they’re seasoned veterans and these veterans are likely the ones making hiring decisions, or at the very least know someone who makes the decisions.

Do you live in the Toronto, Ontario area and are looking for additional career advice? Join Adecco’s Career Fair taking place on March 13th at the Toronto Reference Library from 10 AM-3 PM. Click here for more information or to register for the event.

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