Social media websites can enhance your job search efforts. These websites are especially beneficial to employers who use them to vet candidates before making hiring decisions. It's a good idea to thoroughly clean up your social profiles before submitting your resume. Here are some tips for creating a more professional social media presence.
Set Profiles to Private
Change your settings on your social media accounts to Private to have better control over who sees your pages. When your accounts are set to private, you can take your time and do a thorough examination of your posts and comments without worrying about employers or other outsiders.
Edit Typos and Unreadable Posts
Get rid of social media posts that have weird spellings and abbreviations. Try to appear educated and articulate in your posts. Consider taking a screenshot of your fun posts, saving them to your hard drive and then deleting them. Making more of your posts relevant to your professional life can enhance your brand and give you an advantage over other candidates.
Remove Inflammatory Content
Get rid of any posts that include expletive-filled rants and profanity. These posts might make you appear ill-mannered, careless and unprofessional. It's fine to vent your frustrations, but do so in a way that wouldn't turn off a potential employer.
Use Appropriate Photos
Use appropriate photos to tell your story on social media. Add a professional head shot to your LinkedIn profile. Show photos you spending time at work volunteering. Consider including images of the annual summer picnic sponsored by your employer or pictures taken at a conference or networking event.
Express Relevant Opinions Carefully
There are plenty of opinionated people on social media. If you weigh in on a controversial subject, do so with caution. Rather than expressing an emotional opinion, react with facts and information. Take a stand by making an intelligent post rather than a controversial one. If you feel an emotional connection to a topic and take a stand without fully realizing the entire scope of the situation, you may come off as sounding foolish or uninformed. If you already commented on a controversial topic, consider deleting the post if it paints you in an unprofessional light.
Companies investigate your online presence to see how you communicate with others and showcase your personal interests. Demonstrating that you carry yourself with aplomb and integrity goes a long way. Having a robust yet professional online presence can enhance your personal brand and boost your chances of impressing potential employers.
Social media profiles can be a great complement to your resume. Having a great presence on social networks can help you stand out from other candidates and connect with potential employers and co-workers.
Photo courtesy of mkhmarketing at Flickr.com