5 Social Media Job Search Mistakes to Avoid in 2012

Social Media Job Search Mistakes

The technique of using social media and social networking sites to aid in the job search process is gaining momentum.

There are many avenues available for people today to aid and supplement their hunt for a new job.

The traditional methods generally consisted of individually applying to companies featured in job adverts in newspapers or magazines. Some test their personal connections inside companies and are referred by active employees for suitable openings.

The modern technique used by most people is to upload their CV to online job search portals.

There is no doubt, however, that using social media to find a new job is becoming one of the primary job searching methods.

See Also: Social Media Job Search Statistics [Infographic]

Below, 5 common mistakes and errors that should be avoided while exploring jobs via social media sites are detailed:

LinkedIn Job Search Mistake #1: Anonymous Recommendations

It’s a common practice on LinkedIn for one member to recommend another member and praise his or her skills in the relevant field of work. It’s a good way to increase the value of one’s resume in front of a prospective employer.

However, of late, it has been observed that some users endorse other members without even knowing each other. Many people have not hesitated to request recommendations from unknown people. This is a very unprofessional way to add value to someone’s profile and it reflects very poorly on the person requesting it.

How can some unknown person write a glowing report about someone’s professional skills, attitude and communication skills without ever having met that person or worked with him or her? Needless to say this unethical tactic is best avoided.

LinkedIn Job Search Mistake #2: Unprofessional Photos

Utmost care must be taken when posting profile photographs on professional networking site like LinkedIn.

Many candidates commit the cardinal sin of posting a personal photograph of themselves which, putting it mildly, is a silly thing to do. While the picture of a person in the middle of a party or having a good time on the beach with booze looks really cool on social networking sites, the same photo almost invariably puts off a potential recruiter. It sends the impression that the person might not be very serious or focused on his or her career.

There is no need to provide someone a readymade, if not entirely avoidable, reason not to consider your application. Posting a photograph of yourself attired in formal or business casual clothes is the correct, not to mention safe, way forward.

It’s certainly one less reason for rejection.

LinkedIn Job Search Mistake #3: Not Joining Groups

Many people are not aware of the power of LinkedIn’s search engine.

Many groups have been created within LinkedIn that cater to very specific skill sets. These groups are especially beneficial for people with niche skill sets. It allows them to join groups related to their industry and network effectively with people of the same profession.

Many times it has opened doors of opportunity hitherto hidden from them. There is everything to gain and certainly nothing to lose by making use of the LinkedIn search and group features.

Twitter Job Search Mistake #1: Underestimating the Professional Value

Many people are under the impression that Twitter is just a place to “tweet” or chat harmlessly with friends and follow the personal lives of celebrities.

Well, Twitter’s tentacles extend even into the professional fields. Twitter can greatly help someone’s job hunt by providing a tool to effectively network with people possessing similar or complimentary skill sets.

It’s a great tool to gain knowledge regarding job openings in companies.

Including your biographical and professional data in Twitter can indeed prove to be a masterstroke.

Twitter Job Search Mistake #2: Not Using Hashtags

Last but not the least; prospective job seekers should use the hashtag or # symbol to properly categorize their tweets.

Hashtags have the power of highlighting or playing up certain keywords that the user might deem relevant. By using hashtags in Twitter, users may discover previously unexplored opportunities.

Candidates should use social media and social networking sites very carefully since they are constantly evolving and have not yet reached the accuracy and efficiency of the older job search methods.

A final word of caution: candidates must refrain from disclosing too much personal information on these sites.

Canny use of professional networking tools like LinkedIn and even social networking sites like Twitter can help a job seeker in ways not often thought of.

It’s best to use these tips along with traditional job searching methods such as employment web sites and personal contacts.

About Alyssa Clarke

Alyssa Clarke is a freelance blogger who is passionate about writing. She frequently writes on SEO, marketing and social media related topics. Her favorite sites are Gizmowatch and Bornrich, which she also happens to work for. She is a social media addict and can be actively found on twitter @alyssagclarke.

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