This post previously appeared on That Working Girl.
When we step into the ring for a new job search, nothing is more important than bringing our A game and our best weapons, right?
Social media – specifically LinkedIn and Twitter – are two of the sharpest tools we have for networking and landing the perfect gig. Unfortunately, not everyone uses the networks to their full extent. To help, here are some great ways to get the most out of LinkedIn and Twitter for networking and job searching.
Keep it current and professional. Putting your best self forward is always important when using social media in a professional capacity. With LinkedIn, it’s easy to just set it and forget it, but that won’t do any good. On Twitter, it’s too easy to get distracted. With both networks, keeping your information and content current and relevant goes a long way.
Do a little humblebrag. One of the best things about social media is that it gives professionals outlets to share their ideas, accomplishments and work. Don’t be afraid to share projects, posts and other work or accomplishments that you’re proud of. It’s a great way to easily show off things you put a lot of work into and are passionate about.
Write a call-to-action into your LinkedIn summary. LinkedIn is great for a lot of things, but not so much for sharing a clear message or interacting with other users. Adding a quick line in your summary telling other people how and why to get in touch with you is an easy way to encourage communication.
Research, research, research. If you use LinkedIn and Twitter for nothing else, you should at least be using it for research. Keep tabs on companies you’re interested in or have applied to, search out the right people for your cover letters and do a little extra recon on interviewers or people who already have the job you want.
Connect with industry pros and thought leaders. Twitter gives us an opportunity we never would have had before social media existed – the chance to connect and talk with other people in our industry on any given day from anywhere in the world. Take advantage of it by reaching out to people you admire or aspire to and let them know by discussing something they recently wrote or asking to chat about something industry-related.
Participate in discussions. Nothing shows you know what you’re talking about better than actually talking about what you know. Join a couple groups on LinkedIn that you find interesting or scope out a Twitter chat or two and participate. Not only will it show off your knowledge on a subject, but being a part of discussions will expose you to new ideas and help connect you with people who share your interests.
Perfect your elevator pitch. Everyone needs an elevator pitch. You have to know how to sell yourself – whether it’s in an interview, at a networking event or when it comes time for a performance review. Twitter and LinkedIn are great for that because there’s a character or word limit. If you can do it in 140 characters, you can do it anywhere.