Once upon a time, we thought there wasn’t much we could accomplish in 140 characters. Twitter proved us wrong. Now, savvy job seekers are using the micro-blogging platform to rise above the competition for coveted positions. Here’s how.
Create a unique Twitter handle.
You can certainly use your name as your Twitter handle, but if your value can be better expressed through description, get creative. There’s a 15-character limit, but you still can draw a vivid word picture with those parameters. Consider @ValueIntoWords, the Twitter handle for a master resume writer. Or @bizshrink, the handle for a leadership psychologist. Start brainstorming your perfect handle – just remember to keep it professional.
Make the most of your bio space.
You’ve got a whopping 160 characters for your Twitter bio, so you’ve got to be clear and concise. Emphasize your experience, relevant interests, and the value you add to your industry. Don’t forget to add a real, professional-looking photo of yourself. People want to connect with a real person, not a spambot or a jokester.
Follow the leaders.
If you’re looking for work in a particular industry, it makes sense to follow individuals and companies associated with that industry. That’s the beauty of Twitter – you’ve got an all-access pass to everyone with whom you care to connect, people with whom it might be difficult to secure a meeting in real life. On Twitter, you’ve got their ear. Plus, you can follow companies’ job-related Twitter handles to keep tabs on the latest openings rather than searching the companies’ websites.
Share the love.
In the Twitterverse, sharing the love is known as retweeting (RT). And while people may appreciate a RT, you’ve got to take it a step further to get noticed by the leaders in your industry. You can do this by crafting a tailored retweet, adding your own quick commentary to the original content. The idea is to add value and a personal touch, not to just parrot others’ words back to them.
Create your own content.
Staying current with the latest trends and news in your industry is important, but what’s even more valuable is if you’ve got something of your own to say. Share blog posts you’ve written, or craft short, practical tips in your area of expertise to position yourself as a thought leader in your industry. Offer help to others by answering a question, voting in a poll, or adding your opinion when solicited. You want to give people a good reason to follow you.
You’re looking for a job, but you do have other interests, don’t you? Don’t fall into the trap of making your Twitter feed all work, all the time. Showcase your personality and style, talk to people about your interests, and be genuine. Not only will you come across as a real person, you may even make critical contacts that you might not have found had you simply stuck to the traditional job seekers’ script.
You can’t say everything on Twitter, but you do have the space to make a lasting impression on potential employers. What will your Twitter say about you?