Social Media has come a long way over the last few years. In fact, there’s talk of the Social Resume being the newest kid on the block.

There was a time, not too long ago, where we thought Social Media would be a passing fad. Some would look at people who posted content about themselves online, publicly, in amazement.

“Who would want their pictures online for the world to see?” “I can’t believe she posted that!” “My Resume is private. I’m not putting details of all my jobs online.”

Now, not only have most caught on with the ‘fad’, they’ve embraced it. The majority of those you’ve worked with or will work with in the future, have a LinkedIn profile or will get one over the coming years. And every time somebody googles your name, the results that come up form your Personal Brand or your Social Brand – something which makes a HUGE contribution to whether or not you’ll get the job.

What is your Social Brand made up of? Do you know how to use LinkedIn? And, do you really have to worry about what google says about you?

Your social brand is your reputation that goes beyond your resume. It exists online and is looked at with or without your knowledge. And if you’re saying to yourself right now “I don’t have anything to worry about, I don’t have those silly profiles” think again. If you don’t exist online, recruiters and employers find it harder to trust the legitimacy of your resume.

Here’s what to think about when cultivating your Social Brand (Social Media + Personal Brand):

1) LinkedIn Profile

There are more than 175 million professionals on LinkedIn nowadays. And that number is only going to increase. To take advantage of what LinkedIn has to offer, it is more than just the job search function that you need to think about. LinkedIn is not another, but is a platform via which you can be found. That is, if you’ve optimised your profile.

Mostly, people don’t want the premium version of products (the free versions typically suffice), in LinkedIn’s instance, I highly recommended that you try it when you’re on the prowl for a new job. Not only does it give you access to a wider network of people, it allows you to contact them directly, something you normally wouldn’t be able to.

Eventually, I foresee a world without recruiters (well at least not in the capacity that they’re used these days). We don’t actually need recruiters anymore, now that there is a database of employees online for everyone to access. Recruiters once held the key to a pool of targeted database of applicants who were currently looking for a role.

In today’s society, all those people are on LinkedIn. And studies point to the fact that even when people aren’t actively looking for a role, they’re still open to opportunities. Say bye bye middle man!

SO… optimise your profile, use your network, and make life happen! LinkedIn can now connect you to managers and to talent that you once had to pay thousands of dollars for. Take advantage of it. More on this to come…

2) Twitter & Facebook

Did you know that your personal brand is made up of your twitter and facebook accounts too? Recruiters will most definitely check out what you’ve been up to online recently, and what they find can either make or break your chances.

So, what should you do to help increase your chances of finding a job?

1) Don’t post anything that you wouldn’t like your mother or father to see. Then, sleep on it. Remember, one silly post could ruin your online reputation! And these days, that’s a big deal.
2) On facebook, ‘Like’ companies that interest you. Participate in discussions from companies that appear in your feed. Provide valuable contributions and opinions. Validate and like opinions of other posters. Post insights and interesting articles that you find fascinating. Don’t be a nuisance.
3) Similarly, with Twitter, follow thought leaders, companies that inspire you, retweet tweets of people whom you admire. Tweet regularly. And tweet relevantly.

If you’re not sure as to what not to post on social media… check out my post on What You Should And Shouldn’t Post On Social Media

If all this still makes no sense to you, I’ll be writing posts in days to come, to help untangle the questions you may have.

3) Personal Blogs

This really is the way of the future. I’m talking about a content-rich website that has a great look and feel and blows the socks off anyone who lands there.

Let me explain it to you like this. If you made a huge contribution to your field of work, if you created a project that really moved people, or if you stood for something important, do you really think that an A4 piece of paper would sufficiently be able to represent your experience?

I think not. In fact, this resume, although necessary because of it’s use by recruiters and employers alike, is not nearly enough and should be complemented by a web presence, i.e. a blog presence.

Here, you can link to what you’ve worked on, the organisations that you’ve made a difference to, the projects that you’ve contributed to. A blog is your place to speak your thoughts, to share opinions and is the place where people come to hear about it all. It is the epicentre of your online presence.

People who are interested in what you have to say, and why you stand out will start to check in regularly.

Don’t be afraid to have a strong opinion. Others are more likely to spread your ideas when they’re radical and inspiring.

4) Contribute to Other’s Blogs

When your work has meaning to you, you can’t help but share it. When you love what you do, creating meaningful content for other blogs in your field is easy, is a great way to contribute, adds to your Social Resume AND adds to your credibility!

It’s a win-win all ’round.

Now, go ahead, google yourself and then click on the links that come up. Would you want a recruiter to see these things? What would you like them to see?

As a ex-recruiter, I would have been moved and inspired by talent who shows a voice of insight into a market that needs an overhaul. Who needs another cog in today’s world? Somebody else who does as they’re told, without questioning it? There are plenty of those around.

If you aren’t so sure, give me a call and we can have a chat about what your online profile says about you, and how to improve it!



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