Ch. 3: Social Networking

Social Networking

 

In Ch. 2: Networking with Job Boards we discussed how career portals are important to modern job seekers and recruiters.

We also discussed the differences between general and niche job boards, and how to use them to your advantage when searching for a new position. Each one of those job boards have their own positives and negatives.

The same can be said for Social Media or Social Network channels. While you should use a combination of the social networks — each one has its own benefits and drawbacks.

We will detail which social media you should use and why you should use it.

We will also detail why you should avoid certain social media networking in certain scenarios to ensure that you do everything in your power to maximize your efforts.

This chapter focuses on how professionals advance their careers with the rising influence of social networking.

Social networking has become increasingly more important for job hunting over the past decade; employers use Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn to search for talent and evaluate potential candidates.

Likewise, job seekers can use these networks to connect with professionals and like-minded individuals in their field.

Reaching out on these social network platforms can further the job seeker’s career goals and make landing the interview much easier than if they were to cold-apply for the position.

Finding a job is all about marketing yourself, your skills, and your labor.

The great thing about social media platforms or social media networks is that there are fewer platforms that offer a great opportunity for you to maximize your self-marketing skills.

In the competitive job search environment, any tool you can use to your advantage is critical to ensuring that your job search is easy and effective.

Those job seekers that ignore the importance of social media in this day and age are shooting themselves in the foot when it comes to visibility.

Social outlets allow you to control what people see and when they view your profile. This means that you can customize your profile to display or market yourself in certain ways.

That freedom cannot be necessarily translated to a resume, cover letter, or application. You can only hope that you are crafting those in such a way that get the point across how you’d like.

Social media networks don’t have those problems. They can be customized in way that portrays you as a talented, tech-savvy, modern professional.

Not only can you portray yourself as a talented and tech-savvy professional, but you can also highlight how you separate yourself as a qualified healthcare candidate in all facets of your life.

It's vital, when searching for a new position, to utilize these outlets to the best of your abilities, and this chapter covers how to leverage each of the big 3 social networks that you should be using in your job search efforts.

Honing these three social networks will enable you to be more successful in your job hunt — hone your social media or social network marketing skills.

 

Why You Should Consider Using Social Media To Network

There are plenty of fantastic reasons you should consider using social media to network with other healthcare or hospital professionals.

One of the main reasons that you should consider using social media to network is from a recent study by the Pew Research Center.

Their research showcases that Social Media usage among every demographic has been increasing steadily over the last several years.

In the last decade, social media use has risen by adults from 18% in 2008 to 69% in 2018 with at least one social network being used.

The trend isn’t just for young adults or teenagers either — a growing number of users can be seen across the board for any age demographic.

Pew Research Center reported that 88% of 18-29 year olds, 78% of 30-49 year olds, 64% of 50-64 year olds, and 37% of 65+ year olds used social media.

This research clearly indicates that social media isn’t just a “young trend”. It’s showing sustaining usage across all age demographics.

This indicates that social media will continually play an important role in our lives moving forward — if not increase in usage over time.

As a job seeker, it stands to reason that social media use will only increase or become a requirement in a successful job search moving forward.

Therefore, it’s important to become familiar with how to use social media in your job search.

Knowing how to effectively leverage the current social media networks will improve your job prospects over the foreseeable future.

Social media enables individuals to connect with others with far less restrictions or barriers than ever before.

For instance, if you wanted to connect with someone you didn’t know from a hospital you’re thinking of submitting an application to - you’d have to go to a networking event.

Then once you’re at that networking event, you have to hope that you find them or run into them at some point. You could spend hours at a networking event and never run into the individual you hope to.

Because they chose to not attend, or the networking event is so busy and chaotic that you couldn’t find them amongst the crowd.

The last thing you want is to have your networking efforts be in vain.

Or perhaps you have an existing connection that you could leverage to secure a relationship that could foster into an interview or potential consideration for a job.

Only to find out or realize that your existing connection cannot get you to network with the individual you need to for future consideration for a job.

Social media doesn’t have those restrictions. You can easily connect and network with an individual with as simple as one-click. In many cases, it’s as simple as a one-click connection and short message.

Social media also enables you to connect with other professionals or individuals without restrictions on proximity or distance.

In our example above, you’d have to be in local proximity to connect with others. That problem doesn’t exist in the social media realm.

On social media, you can connect with other healthcare professionals or hospital professionals from any distance with ease.

Social media allows job seekers to connect with other professionals and grow your network in ways that traditional networking pathways or connections cannot accomplish.

Social media allows you to leverage your existing connections in ways that hadn’t been previously available to working professions.

When you find something interesting, you can share it with individuals you’re already connected with.

If you haven’t gotten in touch with some of those professional connections or stayed up to date with them in a long time — social media can be used to leverage any networking opportunities or job search opportunities they might know about.

Professional connections are much more likely to share some details about a new job they know about or recommend you if they already have a connection with you.

Therefore, you should take advantage of that knowledge and use social media to leverage your existing connections and improve your job search prospects.

Another reason you should consider using social media during your job search or for social networking is to improve upon existing relationships.

The beautiful thing about social media is that the key focus is to eliminate barriers to communication. It has never been easier to interact with someone new, or connect with an old friend.

If you find that you haven’t communicated with somebody professionally in a long time, social media allows you to connect with them quickly and efficiently with no traditional barriers.

Social networking through social media is a great way for you to reconnect with individuals you haven’t heard from in a while, and improve upon those relationships that have become stale or been placed on the back-burner.

Another benefit and reason that you should consider using social media to enhance your social networking efforts is that you can identify leaders in individual employers, or leaders of organizations.

Social media networks allow you to identify the various leaders of organizations and then reach out to them with ease.

For instance, you can connect with leaders of your niche by finding a group on Facebook that is exclusively dedicated to C-level executives in the healthcare industry.

In addition, as we’ve mentioned in the past, you can easily reach out to some of the existing connections you’ve established and figure out if they know of someone who is a leader that you can get in touch with.

In the event that you don’t want to reach out to those leaders you still have the ability to share valuable content or insights to those leaders through your social network and social media platforms.

For instance, you might share an article that talks about how to more efficiently source talent in the healthcare industry, and your contributions will get noticed by those leaders.

That content contribution or share on the social media platform might get you recognized and lead to potential interviews or job opportunities.

There are so many fantastic reasons as to why you should use social media to improve your job prospects moving forward, and only increasing your efforts on each of the platforms will increase the chances that you develop stronger professional relationships.

 

Know The Most Popular Social Media Channels For Your Job Search

It’s important to know which social media platforms or social networks are key to ensuring a successful job search.

The last thing you want to do is spend a lot of time learning how to maximize your social networking on outdated social media platforms, when the return is limited or minimal.

To counter this fear and potential waste of time, we are going to detail some of the best social media networks that you should use for social networking — and let you know why you should use those platforms over others.

LinkedInLinkedIn is by far the most popular social media network dedicated exclusively to working professionals.

In contrast to other popular social media websites, LinkedIn’s sole focus is to connect professionals of every industry with other relevant professionals.

LinkedIn has roughly 500 million users, which falls in the middle of some of the other social network platforms on our list for you to know about and use in your social networking for your job search.

In addition, LinkedIn is a great platform for finding jobs, reading relevant news articles, reading relevant institution articles, and connecting with other like-minded industry groups.

On LinkedIn, you can add your work history experience, education, volunteer experience, skills, endorsements, reviews/recommendations, accomplishments, courses, honors, awards, certifications, languages, and any interests or company pages that you’d like to follow.

In addition, you can upload your resume and portfolio to showcase some of your work.

LinkedIn also allows you to express your career interests by letting them know if you’re open to work, currently looking, seek career advice, provide career advice, and access salary insights.

LinkedIn makes it easy to connect with other relevant professionals by letting them know how many points of contact separate you and the individual you’re seeking.

As we mentioned in Chapter 1: What Is Networking? everyone is essentially separated by one degree up to six.

And it only takes six degrees of separation before you can connect with everyone on the planet.

When you search for a professional, LinkedIn will tell you how many degrees of separation there are.

For instance, you can search for “Jane Doe” and their profile will appear in the search feed and indicate: “3rd - Healthcare Recruiter - (Place of Employment)”

This provides you with all the relevant information you need to know before reaching out them.

First it lets you know the degree of separation, what their role is, and their place of employment.

Another useful thing that LinkedIn will display is the number of shared connections. If you have any shared connections, you can reach out to your shared connection and ask for a recommendation or referral.

If the shared connection doesn’t get back to you in a timely manner, you can always name drop the shared connection when you connect with the individual you’re hoping to.

LinkedIn is also a great platform for individual job seekers to follow companies or teams.

LinkedIn is a great marketing and recruitment platform for companies, because they can share exciting news within the company to followers who are “Interested”.

This means that you can learn more about the individual company or employer if they actively post on their LinkedIn page.

Another great benefit of LinkedIn is that your connections can actively endorse or provide referrals or recommendations on individual skills.

Like referrals for an application, resume, or cover letter — referrals on your LinkedIn profile can go a long way.

For instance, hiring managers, recruiters, and employers can all search for professionals with certain skills. They might type in and search for the skill, “CPR”.

A list of professionals with that skill on their profile will be presented. At which point, those professionals can then go into each and review the number of endorsements that those professionals received.

Which looks more impressive, a healthcare professional with 20 CPR skill endorsements, or somebody with 0?

The more endorsements someone can get from their connections the better.

LinkedIn is great for individuals to connect and chat with other relevant professionals, and is key to effective social networking on your job search.

FacebookFacebook is the largest social media platform on the planet today.

By now, you’ve probably heard of the massive following and userbase on Facebook. If you haven’t, you most likely have been living under a rock or don’t know the exact stat.

Facebook currently has 2.23 billion active monthly users. This means that nearly a third of all the population on the Earth use it monthly.

Facebook is most often used for personal acquaintances and connections.

Users can share their own private messages, links, public posts, and profile details with friends and family. In addition, Facebook also allows individuals to message others without being friends.

This means that you can potentially reach out to individuals and let them know about you before sending a friend request.

The great thing about Facebook is that the entire social media network is more casual in nature. The platform is more focused on friends and family, than on professional relationships.

This is fantastic because many potential job connections come directly from friends and family members who hear of current openings, and are willing to share that information with you — or speak on your behalf and provide a recommendation.

One unique thing about Facebook is the power that Pages have. Business and individuals can start their own Pages around certain topics, certain businesses, or certain industries.

Facebook users can “Like” those pages and begin following them easily. Because of this, healthcare facilities, and hospitals are increasingly sharing their news and job openings on Pages to garner interest.

Those Pages can then advertise to the largest social media network today, and increase their potential job exposure and company exposure.

In addition, Facebook advertising is much more cost effective than other advertising platforms — due to the shear reach and ability to narrow down potential targets, demographics, occupations, and interest.

Many recruiters, hospitals, hiring managers, and employers are increasingly turning to Facebook to market their jobs and employment pages — which makes it increasingly important for job seekers to use if they wish to remain competitive in their job search.

The only concern that healthcare job seekers and hospital job seekers need to worry about is ensuring that their profile remains professional.

In many cases, companies and recruiters are now sending individual friend requests to do a profile review before they consider them for the job posting.

This is to ensure that there are no inappropriate photos, behavior, or beliefs on the individual’s profile — as that might indicate a future problem with team dynamics, or company culture.

If you are a job seeker, you will undoubtedly come across professional connection and professional networking opportunities on Facebook.

This means you should take steps to rigorously go through your profile and remove anything that might be unsavory for employers.

Facebook is a great platform for reaching the largest number of potential connections han any other social network today.

InstagramInstagram is owned by Facebook, and is popular for individuals who want to share their photos or short video clips.

Increasingly, companies and healthcare recruiters are using Instagram as a display advertising platform. With each new generation, individuals are more likely to respond to visual advertisements, more than text-based advertisements.

This means that healthcare recruiters and employers are actively targeting individuals with unique display ads to showcase the benefits of their facilities, or individual jobs.

For instance, an advertisement on Instagram might feature a Registered Nurse (RN) caring for a patient — and both of the individuals in the picture are smiling.

This creates the impression that being a Registered Nurse is an enjoyable career, and that individuals in this career are truly making a difference on their patients.

As a healthcare RN job seeker, you might take note of this picture and be instantly interested in the facility that the ad is for.

In addition, Instagram is a great platform for job seekers to share some of their professional photos and designs.

If you are interested in a career in the healthcare industry focused around design, marketing, or programming — then you can share some of the portfolio pieces you have on Instagram and garner attention.

Job seekers can also connect with individual pages on Instagram and learn more about networking opportunities or individual jobs.

Instagram is a great platform for those job seekers who want to connect and network on a more informal basis, and share some of their portfolio pieces.

TwitterTwitter is for sending and receiving short messages commonly referred to as tweets.

Twitter at one point used to be the main competitor to Facebook, but those comparisons have since declined. Nonetheless, Twitter is still a very popular tool to use for social networking purposes as a job seeker.

Twitter is great for those job seekers who want to follow friends, colleagues, acquaintances, companies, leaders, or organizations in various industries.

One thing that separates Twitter from some of the other social network platforms on our list for job seekers to consider is that the default setting for all tweets on Twitter is to be public.

This means individuals don’t have to be connected, following, or have liked a profile/feed to see all the comments/tweets associated with that account.

This is the core reason that separates Twitter from other social network platforms because individuals don’t feel obligated to create an account or go through certain hoops in order to follow a feed or connect with other individuals.

Twitter is useful to job seekers because it only takes a simple click and message to connect with other potential professionals in your industry or job role.

Twitter is great for those job seekers who want to demonstrate their knowledge or share relevant information in an abbreviated format — because the structure of Twitter will only allow for so much information be shared at once.

Twitter profiles are much more condensed, and provide information on the user/page in a streamlined fashion compared to some of the other social networks on our list that have extensive profiles on their platform.

Twitter is great for those individuals who want to learn more about companies and quickly connect through brief interactions.

Google Plus (or Google+ — Google+ is a social network that was developed behind the geniuses at Google.

Google+ can easily be compared to Twitter because of the privacy settings on the individual user pages or company pages.

Every single post is able to viewed by a wider audience, similar to how Twitter allows tweets to be viewed publicly. One thing that separates Google+ from Twitter is the fact that you can privatize posts in certain groups called circles.

Circles allow you to limit who can view or gain access to individual posts. An easy way to understand it is how Groups operate on Facebook.

On Facebook, Groups make it so that you can only view posts or content featured within that group if you’re a member.

It works the same way for Google+ circles.

One thing that separates Google+ from the other social media networks we’ve mentioned above is the fact that it is all tied into your Google account.

If you log into Google to watch YouTube TV, YouTube videos, Google Search, or use Gmail — everything is connected to your one Google account.

This means that if anybody searches for your profile on any one of those platforms, they can then find your Google+ account — which makes having it updated is critical to your job search.

Essentially your Google+ account is marketing tool that you can use when attempting to establish networking opportunities.

If someone forgot to save your email as a Contact in Gmail, and had to search for your profile or email because they couldn’t remember it, they will ultimately come across your profile.

Which would look better: a profile that was completely bare, or a profile that had detailed stats about your work history, skills, and education experience?

Obviously the correct answer is the profile that has been filled out and updated with current information.

Even if you don’t use a Google account as your primary email account, it helps to have a Google+ account regardless.

Perhaps someone needs to do a search for a Registered Nurse, but come across your profile as a CNA.

After reviewing your profile, they can then see that you have extensive nursing experience and would be perfect for the role they were considering — even if you weren’t the one they were looking for.

Having a Google+ account is essential for your job search, and social networking activities.

Blogging — Blogging is a great way for you to share some of your opinions on lengthy subjects, and share your excitement for topics that interest you.

In addition, blogging allows you to share article-length commentaries on topics that can gain a following.

When you have a large following for some of the articles or commentary that you write, you increase your exposure.

The more exposure you have on topics that interest you, the more you can potentially attract individuals who want to network with you professionally — or offer you job opportunities.

Blogs are incredibly useful for showcasing your interest in a certain industry or topic to potential employers or recruiters because you can demonstrate that you’re truly interested in a subject — you’re not just talking the talk, you’re also walking the walk.

For instance, if a healthcare recruiter asks you why you are so passionate about the healthcare industry and you begin to elaborate on your passion behind it — you can also highlight that one of your passions is writing about the healthcare industry and all the benefits of the healthcare industry as a career.

Some of the best blogging platforms are individual websites you develop, or you can use pre-made blogging platforms like Tumblr, Blogger, or Wordpress.

These premade platforms allow you to just create an account and begin blogging right away. You can also purchase additional packages that can elevate your blogging to the next level if you desire, but it’s not necessary.

If you decide to start blogging, your blog doesn’t have to exclusively focus on healthcare topics.

Employers, hiring managers, and recruiters are also interested in the topics that are interesting you — because they provide some key insight into how you think, what you’re passionate about, and what your personality might be like.

In other words, blogging is a great way for you to share more of your personality and gather a potential following based on the topics that you write about and how much you share them with others.

Blogging is a great way for you to create improve your social networking outreach easily, by gathering interest from the potential readers that visit your blog and learn more about some of the topics that you’re interested in.

 

Which Social Media Network Should Be Used

Now that we’ve covered which Social Media platforms or networks you should use in your social networking efforts, we’re also going to cover when you should use them for certain scenarios.

Each of the social media networks we’ve highlighted above will help improve your job search prospects, and improve your networking opportunities drastically — but knowing when to use them will help improve your social networking effectiveness to new levels.

LinkedIn — You should use LinkedIn when your goal is to find professional connections exclusively.

LinkedIn should be used when you are trying to keep your personal and professional life completely separate when you’re attempting to network with other professionals.

As we mentioned above, LinkedIn is great for highlighting your skills and experience — so you should use LinkedIn when you want to submit your profile as a Resume or Cover Letter, and learn more about other networking or job opportunities through a professional platform.

Facebook — You should use Facebook when you don’t mind a more informal relationship with potential connections.

Facebook is great to use when you are looking to find other like-minded individuals in groups or communities that are passionate about the things you’re interested in, or are attempting to achieve the same goal like find a job in the healthcare industry.

Once again you have to remember that you need to be careful with your Facebook account, as any unsavory content, photos, or posts that are on your profile might automatically disqualify you from future consideration for any potential position if the employer or recruiter deems it as inappropriate.

Instagram — Instagram is great for those individuals who want to share some of the designs, photos, or professional work that relates to a relevant job in the healthcare industry.

Instagram is like Facebook in that it is much more informal than some of the other options on our list.

You need to carefully review your profile before you use it in your social networking efforts to ensure that it works for you and not against you.

Twitter — Twitter is a great tool to use when you want to quickly reach out and connect with others through a small message or one-click follow.

Twitter can be used both informally and formally, as many professional contacts like how easy it is to connect with individuals and quickly form a dialogue with them.

Even though tweets on the platform are public, Twitter does allow for private messages that can only be seen by the intended recipient.

Twitter is really useful for social networking when you use a prior tweet or update they provided to their followers, as you can mention that tweet when you contact them.

For instance, you can reach out to them after they send out a public tweet that says something like, “Looking for Physicians in NJ for a long term contract.” You can then tag the tweet when you begin connecting with them so they have some reference as to why you’re connecting with them.

Google+ — Google Plus should be used when you want to have recruiters, employers, or hiring managers find your profile on the largest search and video networks.

Google+ is also a great tool to use when you want to connect with teams and keep the conversations exclusive to members of those teams or businesses.

Blogging — Blogging is a great tool to use when you want to share some lengthy articles about your passions or interests both informally and formally.

You can write very formal and detailed blogs about things that interest you, or you can write blogs that are very informal in nature and showcase a little bit of your personality.

If you want to demonstrate your passion for the topic or share a little bit more about yourself — then you should consider using blogging platforms.

 

Use A Mixed Approach

As we’ve mentioned throughout this chapter, you want to use the social networks that will ultimately maximize your chances of improving your networking connections and securing a job.

It’s imperative that you take a mixed approach when you begin reaching out to secure connections in your social networking efforts.

Some platforms are more beneficial than others, and some platforms will ultimately achieve more than others.

While this might be true, that doesn’t mean you should exclude one social media network or another. You need to use a mixed approach.

Using a mixed approach means that you should implement efforts across all the platforms we’ve mentioned.

While it might seem like a waste of time to put time and effort into something that ultimately doesn’t have positive results, it might pay off more than some of the more popular methods we’ve mentioned above.

In addition, taking a mixed approach also means that you shouldn’t just focus your communications or networking outreach to one exclusive platform.

Even though we’ve mentioned that LinkedIn is the most popular platform for professional-only communication and networking, that doesn’t mean that you should be hesitant to reach out to professionals on other platforms like Google+ or Facebook.

If you limit your communication to one platform, you are limiting the potential communication messages that could’ve been well received on other platforms.

For instance, if you only message professionals on LinkedIn, they might never see your message because they never check LinkedIn often.

Whereas you never message somebody on Facebook because you’re worried that it’s too informal, and yet the healthcare professional checks Facebook several times a day.

If you reach out to somebody on one platform and don’t hear back from them in a reasonable timeframe, you should also consider reaching out to them on a different platform.

It’s important not to get discouraged in the event that they don’t reply to your messages or networking activities.

We’ve all been in a scenario where we’re drowning in emails, messages, or connection requests and don’t see the notifications as they pop up.

If somebody doesn’t reply or respond to your social networking activities within a few hours, give it some time. You don’t want to seem annoying or incessantly bug them hoping to get a response.

You want to follow-up within a reasonable time, but not to the point where it can be annoying.

Taking a mixed approach in your strategic networking activities will not only improve the results of your networking activities, but also increase the chances that you will ultimately get a job.

 

Using Social Networking To Find A Job

Now that we’ve covered why you should consider using social media to improve your networking, and which social media platform you should consider using — we’re going to discuss how you can use these platforms to find a job.

It’s no surprise that social media platforms play a crucial role in finding a job. Today, many recruiters look at Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn to find valuable candidates.

  • Linkedin: 94%
  • Facebook: 65%
  • Twitter: 55%

Think about the three platforms as an intensive professional projection of your life.

Twitter should be designed like your online business card, with a captivating headline and links to more information.

Your Facebook is your personality profile that shows your personal and professional side.

And your LinkedIn should be treated as your online cover letter and resume — the most professional of the three.

Using this trifecta will increase your visibility and chances of landing a great job, in addition to the other social media networks we’ve outlined above.

 

Facebook

Many of us think of Facebook as a platform to find and connect with friends, but it can be a very powerful professional networking tool as well.

Employers use this network to find great talent and to feel out their potential candidates, so it's imperative that you maintain your profile.

Here are a few things you can do to optimize your Facebook for the job search and networking activities you can participate in to increase your job prospects:

 

Facebook Privacy Settings

Don’t underestimate Facebook, but be sure to clean it up.

The crazy thing about the internet is that once something is posted online, it can always be found later — even if it’s deleted.

That’s why it’s important to ensure that you take all steps to safeguard your private information through the Facebook Privacy Settings, so you can limit who has access to your information at any given time.

The first thing you want to do before networking through Facebook is to clean and purge your profile of unwanted photos, status updates, news feed posts, and articles.

So, get those party pictures off of there.

To do so, you can either permanently delete your risque photos, or simply change your privacy settings to prevent people from seeing them unless they meet certain standards such as “Only Friends can View”.

To change and view your current Facebook Privacy Settings, click the lock icon in the top right corner. To make the feature more accessible moving forward, Facebook has recently changed the icon to text that states, “Account Settings”.

This should make it easier for you to find in the top right corner, so you don’t have to click ten different icons to find what you’re looking for.

 

FB Privacy

 

Click on "Who can see my stuff?" to customize your settings so that potential employers cannot see anything they may deem compromising:

 

FB Privacy - Social Networking
Potential employers count as "Public" under Facebook's settings, so set your profile so that they can only see the good side of you.

 

Don't let anything compromising slip through the cracks, as it may cost you a job offer in the future. If you add a potential employer as a friend, make sure you change their specific privacy settings using the "Custom" tabs.

Click on "See More Settings" in order to explore the full settings panel and customize how people view your profile:

 

FB Privacy 3 - Social Networking

 

Facebook has plenty of custom settings that you can implement on your profile.

Facebook offers you a handful of different features that can truly customize what individuals can search for and view — so take advantage of this powerful feature.

 

Build Your Network

Go through your Facebook friend’s list and note the ones you can use as professional connection.

Also, find those friends that can help you get a job you want; think of people that know you, and can vouch for your skills. Also look for those that can be a “foot-in-the-door” for a prospective job.

If you notice that one of your friends currently works in a healthcare facility or hospital that you might want to work in — consider reaching out to them and gauge whether or not they are truly passionate about working at that place of employment.

In addition, when you reach out to these Facebook friends, you can ask them about whether or not they would be willing to recommend you to some of their human resource co-workers for potential positions that might become available soon.

It’s always helpful when you have a friend who is willing to speak positively on your behalf to a potential employer.

Completing your profile on Facebook is not as important as it is on LinkedIn, since you're not displaying your entire work history and skills for the world to see.

Since Facebook is geared more toward the community, not job seekers, it is more difficult to find the right people and the right connections.

However, it's definitely still possible to find the right connections, if you know where to look.

Search for groups that are relevant to your industry:

FB Groups - Social Networking

Post relevant, useful, and interesting content to the groups you join, and become a member of the community to get to know some of the insiders.

A lot of professionals take to these groups to discuss problems or new developments in the industry. Facebook groups is a great place to meet like-minded individuals who may be able to get your foot in the door.

Another thing you can do on Facebook is create lists that help separate your friends into relevant and useful lists.

For instance, go through your friends and pick your best references; these are all the people who like you and can endorse your abilities and character.

When you make a list, categorize those people into a new friend’s list on Facebook. You can do this by clicking on the “friends” drop down box and click on “add to another list”, then go to “new list”, and make a professional or work list.

When you post status updates or relevant job inquiries, you can filter by who can see the content; this is where your new “professional list” will come in handy.

When you go to post the status, click on the “friend” drop-down again, and pick who can see your status.

Don’t be nervous when asking people to help you. Most people like feeling that someone regards them highly enough to ask them for help.

Contact them to let them know you are searching for a job. Be specific about what you are looking for, highlighting the skills you have in that specific field.

Figure out what you want before you start asking around. Don’t send out generic statements like: “let me know if you hear about any jobs”.

There are far too many low-level jobs out there, and if your contact doesn’t know specifically what you’re looking for, they might send you a link to a McDonald's job.

One thing you want to ensure that you do is to ask them about potentially being a connection or reference before you automatically assume they are willing.

Affirm their willingness to help and prepare them for future calls from potential employers.

Don’t keep your references in the blind; let them know where you are in the process.

Keeping the reference in the loop will help you maintain your network, instead of, letting them feel used. Finally, let them know how it’s going, and thank them for their help.

 

Fill Out Profile with Professional History

Facebook lets you post your work history and education, so you can market your profile professionally. While you don’t have to fill out your profile like you would on LinkedIn, the more you fill — the more it will help you in the long run.

Post relevant work accomplishments, related news, and updates on your job search, along with the stuff that makes you human.

It’s okay to post dog pics, family photos, and pics from your trip skiing; just remember to keep it classy.

Even though Facebook is a more informal platform centered around friends and family members, you still have to remember that you are also using it as a tool to potentially secure future networking opportunities and ultimately a job.

People like to help others, so use Facebook to show your personality.

If you can connect with a potential employer on a human level, you increase your chances of landing a job.

Facebook’s search bar is a great tool for finding potential employers; you can search for employers or find people you may know that work there.

This way you can connect and contact people that can potentially get your foot in the door for a company you want to work for.

 

Weak Ties vs. Strong Ties

Acquaintances can reveal more opportunities than best friends. Also, acquaintances interact in different worlds than yours, so they may know of other opportunities that your close friends don’t.

Sometimes your weakest ties are your strongest assets to find a new opportunity. Don’t be afraid to reach out to people you don’t regularly speak to.

 

Groups and Discussions

Facebook is great for the groups and discussion areas we’ve mentioned on various company pages or interest pages.

You want to utilize these groups and discussion boards as a way to interact with other professionals and connect.

One way to ensure that you find more groups and discussion boards to participate in is to find at least twelve and actively follow them.

Once you begin following them, actively participate in some of the conversations that are ongoing.

 

Fan Pages

Another thing you should take the time to participate in on Facebook is Fan Pages. Fan pages are a great way for individuals to find things that they are passionate about, and connect with others on those platforms.

There are fan pages for virtually everything. If you can’t find any fan pages about healthcare topics that you’re interested in, you should consider starting one.

If you’re passionate about something, then you can guarantee that at least several others are passionate about the same thing.

When you participate on or run a fan page about a healthcare industry topic that you’re passionate about, you can increase your exposure to others who might know about potential networking events or job openings.

 

Audience Insights Tool

One really cool feature that comes included with Facebook pages is the Audience Insights tool.

This tool allows admins of the page to gather more information about their audience.

In the Facebook Page dropdown menu, you can learn more about the demographics, likes, and behaviors of your audience member.

This allows you to narrow down your potential search efforts or networking connection efforts when you’re searching for individuals to potentially connect with.

While other social network platforms or social media platforms on our list have similar tools, most of them don’t even come close to the level of insight or offer as many features as Facebook Audience Insights provides.

 

Twitter

Twitter should be used like a business card; it should be what people see to gather contact info and links to more information — like your portfolio, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

Like a business card, space on Twitter is limited, so don’t overcrowd your profile with useless tweets.

Use Twitter to showcase your professional profile. Make sure your profile has a good headline, instead of just writing “editor.”

If you want, you can make separate accounts for your personal and professional life; that way, you can use your professional Twitter to keep up with your professional network.

Follow people and institutions that relate to the field you want to work in.

Twitter will help you by giving you relevant searches with “who to follow”. You can use shout-outs to correspond with people “out of your league” to share insights and start up a potential dialogue.

Find mentors and send private messages to them as we’ve mentioned above.

Reach out to people in your field, and let them know you are searching.

Make sure to reach out to them a few times, because most people won’t respond to people message out of nowhere.

Talk about things they’ve done, said, or posted that you agree with or that touched you in some way. Assume they will participate in the conversation — you might be surprised.

 

Good Content

Be sure to have good, relevant content on your Twitter. Tweet insights and posts that are interesting and relevant to the field.

Tweet other people’s insights and articles — this could start a dialogue.

The more interesting your content is the more likely you are to attract followers and maybe get a job.

Use shortened URLs to publish your articles and portfolios. So that they don’t take up space and are easily discovered.

As we mentioned above with Facebook, you want to be careful of your activity on Twitter.

If you make it seem as if you are an outstanding citizen, but retweet, favorite, or like various offensive tweets that others are posting — your claims will be called into question.

You want to be careful with some of the things you share on Twitter, just like any other social media platform.

We can nearly guarantee that your activities on social media platforms will be reviewed before a potential offer is extended — and that applies to your favorited tweets or retweets.

It’s even easier to browse through your Twitter history than other social media platforms we’ve mentioned, because everything is public unless it is a direct message as we’ve stated above.

Like your Facebook purge, you also want to conduct a Twitter purge and remove anything that might be deemed as compromising in the eyes of an employer or recruiter.

In the event that you’re not sure, it’s best to just remove it.

Many of the things that you share on Twitter might seem innocent enough to you, but you should leave no room for interpretation.

It should all be positive, otherwise you will be automatically disqualified from future consideration.

 

Use Twitter To Find Job Openings

Many Companies Tweet about openings they have, so stay up to date with the industry and professions.

Follow the leaders and companies, and when they post job openings, use a shout out to get noticed.

Another important thing to do is to follow recruiters for various industries.

Often times healthcare recruiters will tweet something along the lines of, “I have a client seeking experienced RN with 5 years of experience in Maryland.”

 

Use Hashtags To Improve Your Search

One thing that separates Twitter from some of the other social media platforms we’ve covered is that the use of hashtags is critical to success on the platform.

When individuals attach hashtags to their posts, they can instantly target other individuals who have used that hashtag, or group similar posts in one relevant hashtag.

For instance, using our recruiter example tweet above, it might fully read as: “I have a client seeking an experienced RN with 5 years of experience in Maryland #RN #registerednurse #maryland #job”.

Individuals who use hashtags can target their tweets to certain audiences who frequently visit or use those hashtags.

There are tools that you can use to find relevant hashtags for your content, to effectively maximize your hashtag efforts.

The last thing you want to do is to use irrelevant hashtags on your tweets, as it is generally considered spam and will hurt your job search and networking efforts.

Once again you have to remember that you only have a limited number of characters that you can put into each tweet — so you don’t want to put twenty hashtags that are irrelevant.

Choose 3 to 5 relevant hashtags and include them.

One way to find those relevant hashtags we mentioned above is to use a tool known as Hashtagify. Hashtagify is a tool that will provide you with helpful insights to be used on Twitter.

A quick glance at Hashtagify and you can find the related hashtags you should consider using, the popularity of those hashtags, top influencers that you could potentially connect with regarding that hashtag, the popularity trend of that hashtag, and much more.

In addition, we’ve put together a helpful guide for you to review while you’re searching for relevant hashtags to use in your job search: 10 Best Hashtags for Your Job search.

Take the time to review that and maximize the hashtags you use for your job search efforts.

 

Use Retweets To Your Benefit

Another thing you should maximize on Twitter is to use the Retweet function. Retweeting something is when you take an existing tweet, and share it to your own followers.

When someone retweets something, it alerts the original Twitter user that the post was shared.

When someone sees that their tweet was retweeted, it could potentially start a conversation that otherwise wouldn’t have been initiated.

Everyone likes when their posts or content can get shared to new mediums or to new followers, cause it helps grow their own influencer network.

Often times, individuals that you retweet will often reach out to you and thank you for retweeting something — which solves half the problem of initiating contact with them because they will reach out to you first.

In addition, when someone thanks you for the retweet, you’re also gaining additional exposure to their followers.

In other words, from one simple click or tap to retweet something you like, you could potentially increase your networking circle within a heartbeat.

When it’s that easy, there is literally no reason for you not to make an effort. There are plenty of benefits that can be gained from this simple action.

If you decide to retweet, make sure you add some substance to the conversation. When you add substance to the topic of conversation, the original poster is much more likely to respond to you and give you some additional exposure.

If you don’t have anything to add to the conversation, you should consider posing a direct question — as you can almost guarantee that if you have the question, others will also have a similar question.

In nearly all scenarios, people enjoy getting questions related to their expertise — cause it lets them know that their opinion or answer is valued.

When someone feels like their contribution or knowledge is valued, they are much more likely to respond positively to your question.

 

LinkedIn

LinkedIn is your online cover letter and resume. As we mentioned previously your profile should be strictly professional and highlight your qualities and skills.

Recruiters use LinkedIn as a landing page to search for candidates that best match what companies are looking for.

The unique thing about LinkedIn is that there are plenty of tools behind the scenes that help employers and recruiters find the best talent for available positions.

Employers, hiring managers, and recruiters use algorithms on LinkedIn to best match your profile to a fitting position.

LinkedIn is great, because if you sculpt your profile correctly, recruiters will be able to match you to a position they might have available.

A profile that gets recruiters interested lessens your need to search for various positions.

If you use the correct keywords and have a good network, you can give yourself the best visibility to recruiters, and the best chance of getting an interview.

To help guide you on how you can craft a better LinkedIn profile, we’ve broken down your LinkedIn profile guide into several different sections.

 

Make A Great Headline

A good headline should be a strong statement that tells the viewer about yourself. A headline is your tagline and your pitch; you are trying to sell yourself with it, and you have one line.

For instance, you want it to clearly state who you are and why you should stand out amongst other individuals with your similar experience or background.

Here are several really good LinkedIn headlines that you should use as an example when you begin crafting your LinkedIn headline:

 

Great LinkedIn Headline Examples:

Registered Nurse / Pediatric Nurse with experience in Critical Care

Partnership Manager & Customer Relationship Manager

Human Resource Manager & HR Strategist with experience in lowering HR expenses and increasing staff retention

In these LinkedIn headlines, the role is clearly stated and your expertise is highlighted.

The required format for LinkedIn’s headline is: [Job Title] at [Company]. In the event that you don’t have a current company, the job title or skills will be displayed in your headline.

Fortunately, your LinkedIn headline can be up to 120 characters.

This means that you want to take advantage of all that real estate.

If your current position or previous position fill up the entire headline, then you want to also include relevant skills.

For instance, if you’re a healthcare business analyst currently seeing new opportunities, then your LinkedIn headline should be similar to this:

Healthcare Business Analyst experienced in strategic planning, budget management, cost analysis, and program evaluation

This LinkedIn headline details what your title is, and what you’re experienced in. It’s important to remember that your headline is like a short sentence that will provide enough information to potential employers or recruiters.

In addition, our example headline is 119 characters, just shy of 120 characters you want to strive for.

A good headline is the first thing a recruiter or employer sees, so make it a good one; it’s your brand.

Brand yourself in a way that sets you apart from the crowd, but at the same time, shows the viewer you are human.

Tell them what you plan to deliver; make the statement memorable. Another good example is:

• “Professional designer looking to make an overworked art director’s job easier.”

The best way to make a headline is to take what you are good at or what you do, and sell it to an employer.

 

Bad LinkedIn Headlines To Avoid:

Just to showcase some bad examples and what you should avoid in your LinkedIn profile, here are some bad ones. We will break down why they are bad for each.

Unemployed

The simplest way to describe this poor headline that you should avoid is that it doesn’t help anybody. Yes, you are unemployed — otherwise you wouldn’t be seeking new opportunities.

But what skills do you have? What do you have previous experience in? What are you passionate about? What’s your education background? What are you looking to pursue?

Jack of All Trades/Skills

This is a poor headline because you’re overstating your skills. Even though you might think you’re really talented and can do everything, it sounds like you’re not an expert in something.

A lot of people can be good in several things, but employers and hiring managers are looking to hire experts or professionals who are exceptional at a few things.

Don’t just state that you’re a jack of all trades.

For instance, instead of saying “Jack of all trades in marketing”, let’s use a marketing professional example: “Senior Marketer with experience in Print Advertising, Digital Marketing, Digital Growth, and Client Marketing.”

Between these two examples, it’s very clear which stands out more and demonstrates your experience in all facets of marketing.

With the second example, you will also appear in more searches.

Employers, hiring managers, and recruiters will find your profile when they enter in the individual terms: “Senior Marketer”, “Print Advertising”, “Digital Marketing”, “Digital Growth”, and “Client Marketing”.

Whereas with the first example, you wouldn’t appear in any searches based off your headline because nobody types in, “Jack of all trades”.

Multi-Skilled Healthcare Professional

This is another bad LinkedIn headline because it doesn’t provide enough detail.

The healthcare industry has hundreds of potential career opportunities or healthcare jobs for healthcare professionals.

This makes it difficult for hiring managers or recruiters to discern what skills you truly have as a healthcare professional.

Multi-skilled might mean that you are CPR and Safety certified, or it could mean that you’re a Licensed and Practicing Doctor.

As you can see, the two are very different — and you need to clearly state that in your LinkedIn headline to effectively expand your social networking opportunities.

 

Your LinkedIn Headline Should Make It Easy To Find Networking Opportunities:

Your LinkedIn headline should make it easy for you to find additional social networking opportunities.

You don’t want to be forced to work harder than you need to.

Take advantage of your LinkedIn headline to solve the needs faced by employers, hiring managers, and recruiters as they try and solve their staffing needs.

An employer has a need, so figure out what that need is.

Do this by telling them how you can meet it in your headline. Remember that the best way to improve your networking efforts is to maximize your LinkedIn profile and have it work for you in your job search and networking efforts.

When you have a solid LinkedIn headline, you can appear in more searches through the use of the strategic keywords included in your LinkedIn headline.

As we mentioned earlier, employers and recruiters can get matched to you through the search results based upon your profile keywords.

You also want to indicate that you can create new opportunities for future employers instead of simply including things like “I am currently unemployed” or “Student” in your headline.

 

Create A Detailed Profile

The next thing that you need to do to increase your social networking and find additional healthcare job opportunities is to create a detailed LinkedIn profile.

A detailed profile helps your visibility on Google and within the platform.

For instance, if you search for your name on Google and you have a very detailed LinkedIn profile, there is a high probability that your LinkedIn profile will appear as the top result.

It will most likely appear over the top result compared to your other social media profiles or accounts.

If somebody else has your same name, then the more detailed your profile is — the higher you will be ranked amongst those with a similar name.

This profile should include important keywords so the algorithms can match you based on the relevancy of your keywords.

Be sure to form it like a resume and include employment (current to past), education, industry, and websites you have (portfolios, blogs, etc.).

Include a detailed professional summary that highlights experiences and skills.

Speak to your accomplishments, and what you have done for previous employers with the skills you possess.

Keep your summary professional, but don't be afraid to talk yourself up. List as many skills that you know or are acquainted with.

Employers, hiring managers, and recruiters are much more likely to connect with or network with someone for future opportunities if they have at least a basic understanding of some advanced concepts — versus having to train someone completely new on a topic they know absolutely nothing about.

To get the best results, ensure that yours is at, or at least close to, 100%:

 

LinkedIn - Social Networking

 

You can ensure that your profile is incredibly strong by using the LinkedIn Profile Strength feature.

The Profile Strength feature is a great tool to help guide you along on which features or sections are missing from your LinkedIn profile in case you lose track of what else you should add.

Customize your URL so it’s easily shareable and add personality to your profile.

A good URL makes it easier for you to link your site to resumes and job boards.

Customized LinkedIn URLs are great so you don't have a messy looking link that shows you took no effort.

If you’re not sure how you go about creating a custom LinkedIn Public Profile URL, LinkedIn has created a helpful guide for you to follow to make it easy.

Consider a good headshot; make sure it’s professional and of good quality.

Don’t make a bad first impression with a blurry picture — or with one of you holding a beer.

Some people choose to have a more casual photo, but that doesn’t mean everyone will respond to it or appreciate your “casual” nature.

It’s important to remember that LinkedIn is viewed as the professional social media platform, and your headshot/profile picture should reflect that.

To add images, log in, click "Edit Profile", and then click the following icon to upload:

 

LinkedIn 2 - Social Networking

 

You want to create not only a profile that conveys how qualified you are for the position, but one that is easy to digest and visually appealing. When building your profile, aim for an end result like this:

 

LinkedIn 3 - Social Networking

Linkedin.com

 

Completing your profile is the first step to success, when it comes to marketing your resume on LinkedIn.

In the example picture above, the LinkedIn profile has relevant experience, education, connections, relevant endorsements for skills, and portfolio media/links that help speak to your experience and credentials.

If you want people to take you seriously, then you should take your job search seriously.

A great profile shows that you not only took the time to impress whoever comes to it, but that you're also dedicated to finding the right position.

The more attention to detail you put in your LinkedIn profile, the more it will pay off in the long run.

The beauty of LinkedIn is that it isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. So you won’t be wasting your time for spending a decent amount of time attempting to spruce up your profile.

 

Start Networking On LinkedIn

First, you want to start off connecting with anyone and everyone you already know who's on LinkedIn.

To do so, hover over the icon in the top right of the menu and select either "People You May Know" or an option to invite your contacts:

 

LinkedIn 4 - Social Networking

 

Clicking on "People You May Know" or "See all" will take you to the full suggested connections page; here, you can add people that LinkedIn believes you may already know.

Take some time to add as many connections as you can amongst peers, college professors, former or current employers, and friends.

When you add connections that you might know, LinkedIn’s algorithm will also recommend contacts for you to potentially connect and network with because you both have similar connections.

This is also extremely helpful for figuring out who you could potentially connect and network with — and will save you some time in the long run.

 

LinkedIn 5 - Social Networking

Linkedin.com

 

Another thing you can do is to directly search for individuals based upon their title or place of employment.

You can then view the search results and narrow down the potential connections you want to connect with based on their job title and place of employment.

If you've already built a decent following or friend list on other social networks, it's a good idea to share your profile there too to gain more connections.

Each social media account that you share your LinkedIn profile on could potentially offer you new connections that you hadn’t reached out to before — and it only takes a few seconds.

Search your prospective employer and see connections you may have that link you together.

If you can’t find direct connections, you can find connections of connections — remember that your weak ties might be some of your best chances to connect with new individuals more so than your strong connections.

Connect with people who work in the industry you want to step into. Even if you don’t know them, don’t be afraid to reach out.

Find out what you have in common and make an introduction — who better to become visible to than the people that might give you a job.

Include resume keywords and skills in your profile, so companies can pick them up when searching for candidates.

 

Participate and Promote Your Profile

After you've built your initial following within your current network of friends, family, and colleagues, it's time to search for employers and leaders in your industry, or the industry you want to get involved in.

If you're eyeing a certain position with a specific company, try to find people who already work there to connect with.

Use the top search bar to find employers and connect directly with them, further exposing your profile to the industry.

 

LinkedIn 6 - Social Networking

 

Use the search filter to find people, jobs, companies, or groups that are relevant to your job search.

Finding groups within your field and posting relevant content can be your biggest assets when finding like-minded individuals that you want to connect with.

 

LinkedIn 7 - Social Networking

 

If used properly, LinkedIn can serve as a great platform for job seekers to find companies and professionals that align with their goals and interests.

It's important to stay active on LinkedIn, and engage with your connections. Participate in endorsing people — sharing articles and insights.

Post interesting resources for people to read and engage with.

Staying connected will help you be visible and gain rapport amongst connections.

 

Participate In LinkedIn Groups

Similar to Facebook Groups we mentioned above, LinkedIn also has groups and networks that you should participate in.

When you participate in LinkedIn Groups, you can find other like-minded individuals who are passionate what you’re passionate about.

In addition, you can find other like-minded individuals who know of any potential networking efforts or available jobs with ease.

To find Groups that might be of interest to you, go to the top of the LinkedIn search bar and type in the search term that you want to find a group for.

In our example, we’ll walk you through how to join a Registered Nurse LinkedIn Group.

• In the search bar, search “registered nurse”.

 

Registered Nurse LinkedIn Group Search - HospitalCareers

 

• Click on the “more” dropdown tab, next to People, Jobs, Content.

 

Registered Nurse LinkedIn Group Search 2 - HospitalCareers

 

• A list of groups will display based on exact or similar terms to the search phrase you entered.

 

Registered Nurse LinkedIn Group Search 3 - HospitalCareers

 

• Click on the group that you’re interested in.

 

Registered Nurse LinkedIn Group Search 4 - HospitalCareers

 

• The Group Page will pull up alerting you to the number of members in the group, the Admins who monitor the group, and a little bit more information about the group.

 

Registered Nurse LinkedIn Group Search 45- HospitalCareers

 

• Click on “Ask To Join” in the top right. When you ask to join in the top right, one of the page admins will review your request and either accept or decline your request.

Once you’re in the group, you should actively participate in the discussions and engage in meaningful interactions with other members.

The more you engage and interact with individuals within the group, the easier it will be to potentially form new connections and learn about new job opportunities.

When you learn about new job opportunities through the LinkedIn group, you’ll separate yourself from other candidates who aren’t actively participating in these connection and networking opportunities.

 

Summary

Social Media is a strong tool to use in building connections and discovering resources to help you land a job you want.

You can use the social media trifecta of Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn along with the other important social media channels or networks we’ve mentioned to build your online presence, build and maintain your network, and increase your chances of finding a job you might actually want to work at.

If done correctly, you can use the social media platforms to complement all aspects of your personality; creating a well-rounded picture of who you are as a person while also showing what you bring to the table professionally.

 

Next: Ch. 4: Networking at Conventions and Job Fairs