Can social media help you get hired faster? YES, if you use it the right way.
Laura Gainor did. In March, Laura Gainor saw a job posting on Twitter for a position at Comet Branding in Milwaukee, WI. Based on the ad, Gainor launched a social media campaign, which landed her the gig in less than 30 days.
Gainor identified the company, did her research, and launched her campaign based on what she learned about the organization. She used all elements of social media to make her pitch as to why she was the best candidate for the role – and it worked.
Recruiter Todd Nilson (Twitter Handle: @talentline411) regularly posts job openings on Twitter. When asked if it works, he said (via Twitter), “So far so good. I get some kind people RTing [retweeting] me. Slightly better luck from LinkedIn updates, though.”
Probably because Nilson has an extensive LinkedIn network. As do I. Because my connections are connections I know personally, I am very comfortable in referring them to others. However, I’ve got to be asked in the right way.
For example, one recruiter emailed me via LinkedIn asking for more information about a candidate. Unfortunately, I had no idea who she was talking about. So, I picked up the phone. It turned out this candidate was a third-degree connection. That meant that the candidate was not directly connected to me (first degree), but rather connected to one of my direct connections.
The recruiter and I talked and she provided me with more specific details of the job, including: salary, location (city), position title, requirements, and a brief job description. This enabled me to forward her email, along with my recommendation about her company, and provide more details about the gig to MY connection. This enabled him to forward more information to his connection – the candidate. This strategy helped my recruiter friend not only get referrals from me for the gig, but also more candidates from my direct connection.
The job was filled.
If you’re in job search mode, it pays to pick up the phone, especially if you are the direct connection to the person posting the job. If you aren’t, you can certainly email your direct connection to get more details.
Personally, all the people in my LinkedIn network are people I actually know and can refer with confidence. I recommend this strategy to those wishing to beef up their LinkedIn connections.
If someone wishes to connect with you and you have no idea who they are, you can either ignore the request or simply pick up the phone and find out more. If, after you connect, you feel this person would be a great addition to your network, add him or her.
In addition, whether you’re an employer, recruiter or candidate, it’s important to have a detailed LinkedIn profile that communicates YOU, your brand, and your personality. Go beyond the standard data. See my LinkedIn profile here:
Note the story AND the recommendations. Build your profile accordingly.
Also, don’t forget about the in-person connection. Pick up the phone. Set up a meeting. According to CareerXRoads 2010 Source of Hire Study: Referrals make up 26.7% of all external hires. (Translation: Networking!)