In a time when 1 out of 6 new hires claims to have found their current job via social media, recent college graduates should not underestimate the power Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter could have in their job search efforts.
Sure these sites are great professional networking tools, but those who find most success from using them leverage their functionality to do a lot more than network. Engaged job seekers search, follow and comment on posts, articles or tweets by managers in the companies they would most hope to work for. They leverage these public forums to gain insight on trends and what is on the mind of the leaders they hope to work for.
It has been extremely refreshing to be interviewing candidates that come in informed about some of the work we are doing and offer ideas on where we can take some campaigns next. This level of thought, interest and creativity is exactly what companies look for in candidates.
I encourage you to think beyond the research and leverage social tools to start connecting with employers in meaningful ways. It’s not about aggressively asking about a job opening or requesting an interview, but rather engaging in smart conversation about trends, events or campaigns. Many agencies open up their brainstorms to the community of people following them. Don’t miss an opportunity to participate and share your thoughts — your ideas and comments may result in getting your foot in the door.
The reality is you may not have as much work experience as candidates who left the workforce a few years ago but, as you know, many times that does not mean you can’t do the job. Social Media tools could turn out just the way to showcase that, although you may not have as much on-the-job experience as the “other guy”, you have the skills, expertise and knowledge to do the job.
I wish you luck as you enter the workforce; and remember, you that you have used social media more than most people in today’s workforce. Leverage that expertise to show your potential employer how it is of value. See you at the interview table!