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Social media: free tools and advertising for career growth

Just like a product or a business, you need to develop a personal brand and a powerful circle of influence in order to propel your career forward.

According to some recent studies while both sexes still use social networking sites in huge numbers, women are the ones holding down the fort.

It's no shock that men and women act differently online, just as they do in everyday life. The Web is an extremely social medium, and Web 2.0 is all about being social. Traditionally, men are the early adopters of new technologies. But when it comes to social media, women are at the forefront. While the trends indicate both sexes are using social media in huge numbers, our findings show that women far outpace the men.

Women's behavior online is more relationship-driven. They spend more time on social networks building relationships, communicating with friends, and making new friends.

Social media tools are becoming mandatory for career success. They are free advertising and give corporate professionals, like you, the ability to connect directly with hiring managers, entrepreneurs and recruiters, instead of applying for jobs through job boards, which are black holes. The digital assets — blog, podcast, and social networking profiles — are your online identity and how people discover and connect with you. You have the ability to leverage social media tools and networks in order to present a positive image, be recognized as an expert in your field or industry and to be recruited for a position that aligns with your talents and passion.

Some areas of focus:

It depends on your individual goals

You can’t leverage social media for career success unless you know where you stand today and what you want to accomplish professionally. This includes taking a good look at your life, what your current responsibilities are, the amount of resources you currently have and your career position. When it comes to your career, you need to decide what you are looking for and wanting to achieve. These decisions will impact how you use tools to communicate what you do, who you serve, and how you want to be positioned relative to everyone else, along with your goals and mission.

The power of a personal brand

Social media tools require multimedia and written components for profiles. So you need your own personal brand before you start building their profiles. You need to assess what your strengths are and what you are passionate about. Extremely important that you come across as authentic and genuine and relate to people with a high degree of transparency.

Selecting the appropriate social media networks

Social media tools should be selected carefully based on: first, the volume of the social network is an important qualification because you want to market yourself where a lot of people are already searching for people that have your expertise: Social networks like Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and others, have millions of users that can share your resume, profile, blog entries and more. This allows your brand to go viral and that exposure can help you land a job without applying. Second, the credibility of social networks helps you consider only the tools that have successful individuals you want to network with to help your career. Relevancy of the social network, as it ties in to your career and industry is the most important requirements.

Building a strong online network

Think about building relationships first and career second. That can be accomplished by generating quality content, either: written, audio, video or all three. It also requires that you become a resource, a go-to person or a valuable contributor to your community. To do this, you need to be committed, confident and passionate about what you do or you’ll end up giving up.

Marketing your brand

Marketing your brand for career success is the hardest part of the process because it takes time and sustained efforts. (We are all guilty of not doing enough or not doing it consistently enough). Just having social networking profiles isn’t enough. There are many routes you can take to market your brand, such as being a member of a special interest group, becoming a leader in that group and speaking to organizations. Then there’s commenting on blogs in your industry, guest posting on other sites, join forums and much more. Regardless of the way you get your name out there, you need to ensure it’s consistent with your brand.

Monitor your reputation

Whether you choose to use free or fee-based reputation monitoring tools, you need to keep your pulse on what people are saying about you all the time. One of the simplest and easiest ways to track something on the way, your reputation or otherwise, is to use Google Alerts.


 

Comments

  • Stacy Williams 4 years ago

    These are great tips. As a new business owner, I've heard all about social networking but i was not sure if it was right for me. thank you for this great advice!

  • Cindy Ratzlaff | Brand New Brand You 4 years ago

    Excellent advice. Every college student should be thinking about their personal brand as they prepare to create resumes. And, every person downsized by the economy needs to think clearly about their personal brand and develop a strategy to convey that brand in a Google search dominated world. Thank you for the clear, concise advice.

  • Karmen Reed 4 years ago

    Great reminder to pay attention to "who we are" out there in the big wide world of online relationships Francine!

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