Why social media could be your secret weapon to scoring that next job

It’s not common to think that social media and job searching go perfectly hand in hand. In fact, many people keep their accounts private “just in case.” While we agree that you shouldn’t be posting your fourth time doing a shot-ski to Instagram for the world to see, if you’re smart about how you use social media, it could help you score your next job.

It’s not common to think that social media and job searching go perfectly hand in hand. In fact, many people keep their accounts private “just in case.” While we agree that you shouldn’t be posting your fourth time doing a shot-ski to Instagram for the world to see, if you’re smart about how you use social media, it could help you score your next job.

1. Use it to do some digging on a company that interests you

The most obvious way to use social media? Do some hard research on the company and people who work there who you can’t find on Glassdoor. On LinkedIn alone, you’ll find useful information on the organization and who works there. Beyond that, take a look at the company’s social media presence. Watch relevant Facebook live videos and Instagram stories, and check out tweets that you could find useful.

This type of research can help prepare you for an interview. Imagine saying, “I saw you had X person in your speaker series last week on Facebook live, and I loved what she had to say.” Beyond that, it could help you find the right person to contact about job opportunities.

2. Reach out to a contact (if the opportunity feels right)

You may be able to find someone’s contact information through social media, but why not reach out on social media? Seems weird, right? Depending on your industry, consider taking a shot at saying hello to someone through a Facebook message or Instagram comment. Though the opportunity doesn’t always feel natural, try it when it does.

3. Let the world know you’re looking

This little trick only works if you don’t currently have a job (since you don’t want to publicly say you’re looking for new opportunities in plain sight of your employer). But if you’re on the hunt with no strings attached, post and tweet that you’re on the market. It makes you more visible to recruiters through keyword searches on social and it notifies your entire network that you’re looking. An old coworker or acquaintance could see your post and connect you with someone he or she knows.

4. Make the most out of that bio

Hey, you want that job, right? Don’t just utilize your posts or tweets for the job search — use your bio, too. Hyperlink your resume or portfolio for recruiters, hiring managers and potential employers to see so they can check out your credentials on the spot. Highlight work that you’ve done and make it clear you’re on the hunt for that next big break.

5. Update your name and social handles to be easy to find on Google search

While our teenage selves were quick to change our social media handles to exclude our last names (for safety!), we’re adults who want to be seen — by the right people, of course. Make sure your full name is clearly displayed on your social media accounts so you can be found.

This post was originally published on Swirled.com.