Get Your Resume Noticed with a Great Social Media Profile

By Laura DeCarlo

You can put your social media profiles to work for you to get requests for your resume. Ensure that your social networking profiles produce big rewards and don’t spoil your chances of landing the new job you want by following these suggestions:

  • Focus on workplace relevance. A social networking profile can be much longer than a resume, but a profile is neither a life history nor an employment application. The trick is the right selection of content.

  • Carefully plan your profile photo. The way you look can draw viewers to — or away from — you. Aim for including a professional headshot in which you are smiling, professional, well-groomed, and dressed in today’s styles.

  • Stay current with profile pages. Technology changes with the season, and the flow of new products never stops. You can stay current by periodically checking SocialMediaToday.com.

  • Display your profile widely. After you’ve sweated through the crafting of your perfect profile, link it with LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and other social networking sites.

  • Load up on keywords. After completing your profile (never leave it unfinished or you look like a quitter), review it for a healthy helping of search-engine friendly keywords that describe your qualifications that will help hiring honchos find you, maybe even before they post a job ad.

    Use the headline box to focus on your expertise, such as your most important keywords, instead of your current position. Example: Marketing Manager with 10 years of branding, advertising, and promotions expertise.

  • Evaluate the bells and whistles offered with the profile. Are you able to upload presentations you’ve written or professional video presentation you’ve made? If so, take advantage of these features to further demonstrate your value.

  • Entice with endorsements. Include recommendations from former managers, colleagues, customers, and vendors. Shy about asking? Start by offering to write recommendations for them — maybe they’ll return the favor.

  • Strike a balance. If you’re vulnerable to the pigeonholing trap — you’re changing careers or you qualify for multiple roles — watch what you say in your social networking documents. And take care not to look like a liar by allowing your profile to unmask a history that contradicts the one you present in a customized resume.

Your best strategy: Selectively show the breadth of your capabilities without coming across as a jack-of-all-trades but master of none. Except for small companies, employers prefer to hire a specialist for many of the best jobs. Balancing the appeal of your profile can be tricky, which is why you may want to consult an experienced professional resume writer for help with it.

After you make sure your profile looks good, it’s time to make it live and visible. But, don’t stop there. The next step is reaching out to your contacts to connect, seeing what groups they belong to, and joining them when they’re a fit for your job search. After you’re connected, give endorsements and recommendations (as relevant to the social site). Recipients will be more inclined to do the same for you when you start the process.