How to Get Job Leads With Social Media

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Chances are, you already have Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn accounts. But if not, you’re missing some of the most powerful weapons in your job-hunting arsenal. According to a recent survey from Jobvite, one in every six American workers has used social media platforms to find work.

The most powerful platform for actually finding a job was Facebook, with more than 18 million users finding work there. LinkedIn was credited for 10 million new hires, and Twitter led to 8 million jobs.

Those are some impressive stats—so if you’re using social media but not finding work there, what can you do to increase your odds?

·      Add more connections. Most of the survey respondents who got their jobs through social media are considered “Super Social,” with 150 connections or more on each network. Often, even people you don’t know well can alert you to great opportunities, so don’t be shy about sending out connection requests to people you’ve met—you never know when someone might post a status update to say that her firm is looking to hire a new marketing manager or graphic designer.

·      Update your profiles with current professional information. Though LinkedIn is a professional network by nature, Facebook is often seen simply as a social network, and many users don’t bother to share details of their recent work accomplishments there. Be sure to spotlight your work skills and post details about recent projects across all platforms—your updates might catch the eye of someone in a position to hire you.

·      Pay attention to your privacy settings. While social media can be a great tool in helping you get a job, your profiles can also turn off potential employers if they come across photos or language that doesn’t fit their values. Make sure that personal photos and private jokes are only accessible to your “real-life” friends, so they won’t create a negative impact for potential employers or recruiters.

·      Ask for referrals. When you’re looking for a job, it helps to be as proactive as possible. That may mean looking through your friends’ connections on Facebook and LinkedIn to find people who might be in a position to hire you, and then asking for an introduction. Don’t ask any particular individual for help too often, but if you send a polite letter explaining why you want the introduction, your friends (online-only or not) will likely be happy to oblige.