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Last Updated on March 10, 2021

Don’t Just Work on Your CV. Look at Your Social Media Profiles Too

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Don’t Just Work on Your CV. Look at Your Social Media Profiles Too

How important is social media when applying for jobs?

Is anyone really bothering to look at your LinkedIn profile?

Well, it’s been found that 93% of hiring managers look at social media profiles before deciding whether or not to hire someone. [1]

You can’t argue with that number.

Whether you like it or not, social media does play a big role in the hiring process.

If you’re looking for a job, you need to find out how to optimize your profiles to impress potential employers.

Read on to find out exactly what to do.

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Which social networks matter most?

Let’s say you only have a limited amount of time to work on getting your social media profiles up to scratch.

Which should you focus on?

Well, there’s been some handy research from Jobvite which gives us all the details on how recruiters use social media. [2]

LinkedIn. 79% of recruiters have hired using LinkedIn. It’s used throughout the process – to search for, get in touch with, and vet candidates.

Facebook. 26% of recruiters have hired through Facebook, and two thirds use it to vet candidates before interviews.

Twitter. Only 14% of recruiters said they had hired using Twitter, and it’s used less than Facebook for vetting.

So, if you only have time to optimize one of your social media profiles, make it LinkedIn.

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You should also take some time to ensure that there’s nothing too damaging on your Twitter or Facebook profiles, just in case your potential employer decides to check these out too.

However, job offers can come from unlikely places, so it’s worth fully optimizing all your profiles if you can.

How do you create social media profiles that make a good first impression?

Ready to start getting job offers through social media?

Here’s exactly what you need to do to create winning profiles on each of the main social networks.

How to optimize your Facebook profile

Before you start optimizing your Facebook profile, it’s important to remove anything that could directly hurt your chances of getting a job.

Here’s what you should watch out for:

  • References to illegal drugs. 83% of recruiters said these were a strong turn-off.
  • Sexual posts. 70% of recruiters weren’t keen on these.
  • Swearing. Two thirds of recruiters dislike too much profanity.
  • Posts about guns. More than half of recruiters dislike these.
  • Posts about alcohol. 44% of recruiters said these could cause concern.

Of course, this is only a general guide, and you should use your own judgement.

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If you’re applying for a job as an addiction counsellor, appropriate references to illegal drugs could be fine. Equally, if you’re looking to enter the adult industry, sexual posts probably won’t be a problem.

As well as the content of your posts, you should consider the way they’re written – 66% of hiring managers said they’d hold poor spelling and grammar against applicants.

Time to start proofreading those statuses.

It’s also good practice to keep a close eye on the photos you’re tagged in, and untag any that you think reflect poorly on you. By enabling Timeline Review, you can choose exactly where images are shown. [3]

So, you know what to avoid on your Facebook profile, but what should you include?

Here are some ideas:

  • Information on volunteering you’ve done. 65% of recruiters like this.
  • Information on donations to charity.
  • News relevant to the industry you’re looking to enter.
  • Achievements at your previous job.

So, keep your Facebook profile free from offensive material and post information you’d want prospective employers to see – simple.

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How to optimize your Twitter profile

All of the above advice applies to Twitter as well as Facebook, so it’s pretty easy to optimize both profiles at once.

If you’re particularly keen for employers to see your Twitter profile – maybe you’ve got lots of great content relevant to your industry, or thousands of followers – then there are way to increase discoverability.

You should:

  • Use the same profile picture as on other social networks
  • Use the same handle or username.
  • Link to your Twitter account from your other social media pages.

Staying consistent across your accounts helps recruiters remember you, and makes you appear more trustworthy.

How to optimize your LinkedIn profile

LinkedIn – it’s the ultimate place to get hired, so you want to get your profile just right.

Here’s what to do:

  • Choose a professional profile picture – not a snap taken on a night out.
  • Keep your job history up-to-date, and avoid leaving any gaps.
  • Update your education section with clear descriptions, highlighting how your qualifications make you perfect for the job you want.
  • Connect, connect, connect. The more connections you have, the more likely recruiters are to find you.
  • Follow relevant companies. This shows that you have a genuine interest in your field, and keeps you up-to-date.
  • Write an eye-catching LinkedIn summary, highlighting your best qualities.

LinkedIn is a big player in the world of recruitment, so don’t rush through your profile. You should spend just as long as you would on writing your CV, or composing a great cover letter – if not longer.

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Want to make a great first impression on social media?

It’s worth taking the time to optimize all of your profile to increase your chances of landing that dream job.

Reference

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Eloise Best

Eloise is an everyday health expert and runs My Vegan Supermarket, a vegan blog and database of supermarket products.

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Last Updated on August 25, 2021

Why Personal Branding Is Important to Your Career

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Why Personal Branding Is Important to Your Career

As a recruiter, I have met and interviewed hundreds of candidates who have no idea who they are.

Without a personal brand, candidates struggle to answer the question: “tell me about yourself—who are you?” They have no idea about who they are, what their strengths are, and how they can add value to the company. They present their CV’s believing that their CV is the key to their career success. In some ways, your CV still has its use. However, in today’s job market, you need more than a CV to stand out in a crowd.

According to Celinne Da Costa:[1]

“Personal brand is essentially your golden ticket to networking with the right people, getting hired for a dream job, or building an influential business.” She believes that “a strong personal brand allows you to stand out in an oversaturated marketplace by exposing desired audiences to your vision, skillset, and personality in a way that is strategically aligned with your career goals.”

A personal brand opens up your world to so many more career opportunities that you would never have been exposed to with just your CV.

What Is Your Personal Brand?

“Personal branding is how you distinctively market your uniqueness.” —Bernard Kelvin Clive

Today, the job market is very competitive and tough. Having a great CV will only let you go so far because everyone has a CV, but no one else has your distinct personal brand! It is your personal brand that differentiates you from everyone else and that is what people buy—you.

Your personal brand is your mark on the world. It is how people you interact with and the world see you. It is your legacy—it is more important than a business brand because your personal brand lasts forever.

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I have coached people who have very successful careers, and they come to me because they have suddenly found that they are not getting the opportunities or having the conversations that would them to their next role. They are having what I call a “career meltdown,” all because they have no personal brand.

A personal brand helps you become conscious of your differences and your uniqueness. It allows you to position yourself in a way that makes you stand out from the pack, especially among other potential job applicants.

Don’t get me wrong, having a great CV and a great LinkedIn profile is important. However, there are a few steps that you have to take to have a CV and LinkedIn profile that is aligned to who you are, the value you offer to the market, and the personal guarantee that you deliver results.

Building your personal brand is about strategically, creatively, and professionally presenting what makes you, you. Knowing who you are and the value you bring to the table enables you to be more informed, agile, and adaptable to the changing dynamic world of work. This is how you can avoid having a series of career meltdowns.

Your Personal Brand Is Essential for Your Career Success

In her article, Why Personal Branding Is More Important Than Ever, Caroline Castrillon outlines key reasons why a personal brand is essential for career success.

According to Castrillon,[2]

“One reason is that it is more popular for recruiters to use social media during the interview process. According to a 2018 CareerBuilder survey, 70% of employers use social media to screen candidates during the hiring process, and 43% of employers use social media to check on current employees.”

The first thing I do as a recruiter when I want to check out a candidate or coaching client is to look them up on LinkedIn or other social media platforms, such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Your digital footprint is the window that highlights to the world who you are. When you have no control over how you want to be seen, you are making a big mistake because you are leaving it up to someone else to make a judgment for you as to who you are.

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As Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon, once said, “Your brand is what people say about you when you are not in the room.”

In her book, Becoming, Michelle Obama writes about the importance of having a personal brand and her journey to defining her personal brand. She wrote that:

“if you don’t get out there and define yourself, you’ll be quickly and inaccurately defined by others.”

When you have a personal brand, you are in control. You know exactly what people will say about you when you leave the room.

The magic of a personal brand is that gives you control over how you want to be seen in the world. Your confidence and self-belief enable you to leverage opportunities and make informed decisions about your career and your future. You no longer experience the frustrations of a career meltdown or being at a crossroads not knowing what to do next with your career or your life. With a personal brand, you have focus, clarity, and a strategy to move forward toward future success.

Creating your personal brand does not happen overnight. It takes a lot of work and self-reflection. You will be expected to step outside of your comfort zone not once, but many times.

The good news is that the more time you spend outside of your comfort zone, the more you will like being there. Being outside of your comfort zone is where you can test the viability of and fine-tune your personal brand.

5 Key Steps to Creating Your Personal Brand

These five steps will help you create a personal brand that will deliver you the results you desire with your career and in life.

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1. Set Your Personal Goals

What is it that you want to do in the next five years? What will your future self be doing in the next five to ten years? What is important to you? If you can answer these questions, then you are on the right path. If not, then you have to start thinking about them.

2. Create Your Unique Value Proposition

Create your unique value proposition by asking yourself these four questions:

  1. What are your personality features? What benefit do you offer people?
  2. Who are you and why do people enjoy working with you?
  3. What do you do and what do people want you to do for them? How do you solve their problems?
  4. What makes you different from others like you?

The answers to these questions will give you the information you need to create your professional story, which is the key step to creating your personal brand.

3. Write Your Professional Story

Knowing who you are, what you want, and the unique value you offer is essential to you creating your professional story. People remember stories. Your personal story incorporates your value proposition and tells people who you are and what makes you unique. This is what people will remember about you.

4. Determine Which Platforms Will Support Your Personal Brand

Decide which social media accounts and online platforms will best represent your brand and allow you to share your voice. In a professional capacity, having a LinkedIn profile and a CV that reflects your brand is key to your positioning in relation to role opportunities. People will be connecting with you because they will like the story you are telling.

5. Become Recognized for Sharing Your Knowledge and Expertise

A great way for you to promote yourself is by sharing knowledge and helping others. This is where you prove you know your stuff and you gain exposure for doing so. You can do this through social media, writing, commenting, video, joining professional groups, networking, etc. Find your own style and uniqueness and use it to attract clients, the opportunities, or the jobs you desire.

The importance of having a personal brand is not going to go away. In fact, it is the only way where you can stand out and be unique in a complex changing world of work. If you don’t have a personal brand, someone will do it for you. If you let this happen, you have no control and you may not like the story they create.

Standing out from others takes time and investment. Most people cannot make the change by themselves, and this is where engaging a personal brand coach is a viable option to consider.

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As a personal brand coach, working with my clients to create their personal brand is my passion. I love the fact that we can work together to create a personal story that defines exactly what people will say when you leave the room.

Other People’s Stories

Listening to other people’s stories is a great way to learn. In his article, 7 TED Talks About Personal Branding, Rafael Dos Santos presents the best Ted Talks where speakers share their stories about the “why,” “what,” and “how” of personal branding.((GuidedPR: 7 TED Talks About Personal Branding))

Take some time out to listen to these speakers sharing their stories and thoughts about personal branding. You will definitely learn so much about how you can start your journey of defining yourself and taking control of your professional and personal life.

Your personal brand, without a doubt, is your secret weapon to your career success. As Michelle Obama said,

“your story is what you have, what you will always have. It is something to own.”

So, go own your story. Go on the journey to create your personal brand that defines who you are, highlights your uniqueness, and the value you offer to the world.

Featured photo credit: Austin Distel via unsplash.com

Reference

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