You may be thinking, “How can I use social media to advance my career? I thought social media was for memes and cat videos.” Social media can be much more than that if you utilize it correctly. Below are a few ways that you can use social media to advance your career.
This one may seem obvious, but many people still do not even have a LinkedIn account. LinkedIn is a social network for working professionals. It is a way to display your resume interactively and visually. With LinkedIn, you can bring your resume and experience to life by including actual projects, presentations, design work, strategies, and anything else you created. By doing this, you can show future employers how awesome you are instead of just telling them.
LinkedIn is great for connecting with other professionals and keeping in touch with colleagues, classmates, and business partners. You can use LinkedIn to not only connect with other professionals, but to build positive relationships with them. For connections that you know well, like former classmates and colleagues, periodically reach out to them to see how they are doing. Building and keeping positive relationships with these people can really help advance your future career. One of these contacts may need to hire someone with your skills one day!
Post Content Relevant to Your Industry
Regardless of what industry you work in, there is content online that is relevant to you and your career. By sharing relevant content on your social media accounts like Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook, you create a professional brand for yourself within your industry. If you are a scientist, share science-related content to your social media accounts. If you are in marketing, share content related to marketing. If you are a graphic designer, share content related to that.
This helps establish you as an expert in your field. When applying for jobs, always include links to these social media accounts on your resume. Employers will be impressed that you take the time and do the work to stay up-to-date in your field. If you are currently a student, and do not have previous experience to show off, sharing relevant content can help you immensely. It will show employers that even though you may not have experience, you know your craft well.
Maintain a Professional Image on Social Media
If done right, social media can help you advance your career by highlighting your knowledge, professionalism, and experience. If done wrong, social media can severely hurt your career. We have all heard the stories of people who were fired or did not get a job because of something they posted on social media. Don’t be that person! Assume that everything you post on social media is visible to anyone and everyone. When posting or sharing content, ask yourself the following questions:
- What would a potential employer think of this post?
- Does this post reflect positively or negatively on me?
- Are there any negative consequences that could come from me posting this?
- Will this content help advance my career?
- Would I be okay if my mom saw me post this?
Answering these questions before you post something will give you guidance on whether you should post or share the specific content. Always think before you post. When in doubt, don’t do it!
By using these tips and guidelines, you can definitely advance your career with social media. Your social media profiles are who you are to the world, make sure they represent you as the positive, knowledgeable, and experienced professional that you are!
Meet our Author!
By Jennifer Cruse| Senior Social Media Strategist
Jennifer attended West Virginia University and earned both a Bachelor of Science in Public Relations and a Master of Science in Integrated Marketing Communications. She began working for a group of colleges before graduating with her Master’s. In this role, Jennifer helped manage all marketing activities. This included more traditional marketing like TV and radio, and also modern marketing like social media and digital ad campaigns. Jennifer is experienced in creating high-level strategies and operational tactics. She believes marketing is both an art and a science, because it takes an artist to create and a scientist to measure the results. Jennifer is super excited to be in her current role as Senior Social Strategist at Sutherland! When not working, Jennifer enjoys spending time with her two sons. Playing outside, swimming, and basketball are some of their favorite things to do! She also enjoys reading about all things science and technology!