Archive for Social network service

Market Your Social Media Skills in Your Job Search

In an economy gasping for breath, searching for a job can leave any individual feeling pretty winded. Finding a job has always been difficult, even more so now that so many are looking and so few are hiring. For college seniors who are graduating this month and still don’t have a job, the future can seem pretty bleak. But it doesn’t have to be.

Gen Y Graduates

"Sell your social media skills"

Sell your social media skills

20-something college grads searching for jobs have different skills to offer the professional world compared to even ten years ago before Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn were born. We live in a society today that communicates in an entirely new form.

Social media and social networking have redefined many aspects of our lives, especially the way we communicate with one another. While there are plenty of individuals out there ready to ridicule this phenomenon, most employers and business leaders recognize that social media is the future.

Using social media knowledge as leverage in your job search could be the answer to landing the your first professional gig.

Market Your Social Media Skills

Job seekers should market their social media knowledge during their job search. Many young people just starting out shy away from discussing their social media experience because they’re afraid potential employers will think they spent more time on Facebook then on their textbooks. But that could be a mistake.

Heyman Associates, an executive recruiting firm, interviewed a panel of senior agency and corporate agency executives just this month for their views on social media.  Jonathan Kopp, Global Director of Ketchum Digital, said at Ketchum having digital and social media fluency is an absolute requirement. When hiring, he said the agency looks at a candidate’s social graph – his or her level of exposure and reach across the social web. In the article, Kopp said he wants to bring people on board who are enthusiastic about the convergence of public relations and digital offerings.

So turn your social media smarts into a selling point. Express to potential employers that you are capable of social networking effectively, that you are comfortable communicating within the digital medium, and that you thrive in the fast pace of the online world. This is important even if you’re looking for a position outside of marketing and sales.

The New Personal Communication

Face-to-face communication continues to dwindle (sad to say). Digital communication is the new personal communication. We use email, Facebook, Twitter, and text messaging to communicate with one another. While this has drawbacks (becoming less adept at personal communication), digital communication is becoming the norm in business. Being able to express yourself, your needs, and your interests through online discourse is essential to professional success.

Social media is exploding as the new pipeline for companies to market to their customers and prospects.  So why shouldn’t job seekers leverage their social media skills in marketing themselves to prospective employers? Use your social media knowledge to your advantage. Demonstrate that you are capable of thriving within this new environment. Finding a job is always going to be difficult.  But during your search, be sure you are selling the skills that are marketable today.

Lauren Bailey writes regularly about education and finding the right schools.  She can be reached at blauren99 @gmail.com.

Pew Research Center Study Examines Online Activities in 2010

[tweetmeme]A new study Generations Online in 2010 offers a wealth of information about how people across all age groups are participating in online activities like social networking sites, playing games, instant messaging and blogging, which was of most interest to me.

Information Needs Differ

Writing blogs is only up slightly, by 4% since in the last two years, according to a study by the Pew Internet & American Life Project.  Only half as many people read blogs as visit social networking sites.  But this doesn’t bother me.  Why?  Because various online activities are filling different information needs. You may visit Facebook to post your vacation photos, or Twitter to follow trends, but you’ll visit a blog for information about a product or service.

Oh, and one other thing, the study doesn’t distinguish between blogs and websites.  If you ask someone if they read a blog regularly, they will give a very different answer than if you ask them if they read blogs and websites.  Because, dear readers, many blogs are masquerading as websites.  You are now on my website, which is actually blog technology.  Click on “blog” in the navigation bar and you will find my articles about social media, employee engagement and branding.  So I think a lot more people are reading blogs than the Pew research study reports.

We all read studies and then interpret the results so they support our points of view.  Be honest, don’t you?  That’s why I glommed on to the blogging stats so that I can make the point that a combined 77% of the demographic groups that consumer products companies most want to reach – ages 18 to 45 – are reading blogs.

Blogs as a CEO Platform

As I wrote in my article Blogging as the Centerpiece of a Company’s Social Media Strategy, companies are using blogs as a platform for the CEO to get out the company’s views on a variety of subjects and to disseminate information quickly during a crisis.  Blogs can be distributed with the click of a button to dozens of social media sites, including Facebook and Twitter.  That’s where the study says a majority of people are congregating online.  So, again, it’s information from a blog they’re reading, but studies can’t dig that deep.  A study can’t distinguish where the information is coming from.

So take a look at the study and come to your own conclusions that support your points of view!