MensHealth.com’s Kasey Panetta recently caught up with me to poke my brain about social media and how it can be effective in searching for your next gig. I wanted to be clear in that optimizing social search is simple and puts the job search, CEO, and hiring managers at your fingertips. Kasey also called upon a few others with social savvy to weigh in on the topic.
Tweet Your Way to Your Dream Job
by Kasey Panetta
“just got a new suit. who wants 2 #hireme?”
Twitter may sometimes seem like a 140-character cesspool of celebrity gossip and teenage angst, but, if used correctly, it can be a killer job-hunting tool.
Just ask Jerry Rizzo, Social Media Coordinator for the Philadelphia 76ers, who used Twitter to make the connections to land his dream gig. When the Sixers—home of our favorite Men’s Health intern, Evan Turner—launched a contest to choose the team’s new mascot, Rizzo registered Twitter accounts for two of the final suggestions, @PhilEMoose and@BFranklinDogg, and started tweeting. Impressed with Rizzo’s entrepreneurial efforts, Sixers brass soon offered the amateur a plum social media job.
And Rizzo isn’t the only one using the site for a career boost: There were nearly 300 million mentions of jobs, job openings, and hiring opportunities on Twitter in 2012, according to the company.
But like any job search, tweeting for employment is still a daunting task. So we enlisted the help of top career experts to come up with this 7-step plan to get you from @yourcouch to @thecorneroffice.
Step 1: Pick the Right Handle and Headshot
Create a handle that is reflective of who you are, but also professional, says Rich DeMatteo, co-founder of Bad Rhino, Inc., a Philadelphia-based social media marketing agency. It’s probably easiest to use your name—particularly if you’re in a more traditional field—but if you’re trying to brand yourself, tie it into your blog title or company name. As for the picture, a simple headshot (it doesn’t have to be professional) is best.
Step 2: Fill Your 160-Character Profile
Keep it memorable yet professional, and avoid long sentences, says DeMatteo. Make sure what you say makes sense for the industry and company you want to work for. For example, if you’re looking to work in accounting, be a little more formal. Try “I’m John Smith. I have a CPA from XX University.” and link to your LinkedIn. If you’re in graphic design, be a little quirky. Try “John. Social Media. Peanut Butter and Banana Sandwiches.” with a link to your portfolio. Most importantly? Be transparent, says DeMatteo. You want to sound the way you actually are.