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  • July 1, 2015

The Candidate Guide: How to Fix Your Social Media Persona

This blog was originally posted on LinkedIn 

You know it: social hiring is very hot right now. Recruiters are 24/7 present on social media networks, constantly on the lookout for potential new talents. Your offline presence is strong, but it does not reflect your online appearance. So, if you’re analyzed based on your online persona appearance, why leave it unpolished? Here’s 5 tips to upgrade and fix your online social image for a better recruiting exposure and higher chances to land your dream job.

 1. Google yourself to know yourself

 Photo Credit: powerofthought.org

Did you know that 48% of recruiters use Google or other search engines to check out candidates’ profiles and background? A simple search can reveal a lot. If you have more than one or two social media accounts on different platforms, now’s the best time to create consistency. This means updating old personal info, adding experience and education references, removing embarrassing photos from your high-school days or even deleting inactive and long-forgotten profiles on Hi5 or MySpace. Align your profiles to a professional standard and “sell” your image as a well-rounded brand.

 2. Private vs. Public – what is good for you?

Your social media presence is conditioned by one major factor: the privacy setting. Keeping your profiles permanently closed to the public eye can sometimes be damaging to your personal brand. On the other hand, having some sense of privacy – even on a social media profile – is comfortable. When it comes to being visible to the recruiting market, it is best to know your social platform privacy settings. For example, keeping your Instagram profile on private is okay, while doing the same on LinkedIn is not good for you. If you’re going to polish up your image at least make it visible.

3. Who you connect to is who you are

  Photo Credit: www.careergirlnetwork.com

We tend to connect with a certain type of people, mostly the ones that resemble us. Apart from your childhood friends or high-school colleagues, you should connect to quality industry players too. This goes for all social media platforms and it represents a powerful and free means of networking. Take a look at what other people are posting in your area of expertise and expand your horizons. Hit Like on the career pages of the companies you would like to work for, join LinkedIn groups of professionals or follow your industry peers on Twitter. Networking is everything!

4. Sharing is caring for your image

We all love memes and funny cat videos -- and what’s watching them without the joy of sharing them to our friends, all 500 of them, more or less. Now, there’s nothing wrong with doing so, but it might get over the top the moment when you get tagged in 10 pictures in a row while dancing crazy on a bar table at 3 am, on a working day. Unfortunately, recruiters will judge you based on what they see and what you post. So, do yourself a favor and untag yourself from embarrassing photos. Also, if you want to shape up a professional looking image, create, post and share insightful information in your field of expertise. By doing us you will increase your credibility and showcase your know-how. Sharing is caring, after all, so do it wisely.

5. Stay active and vibrant

    Photo Credit: www.adweek.com

Having a ton of social media accounts means absolutely nothing if you visit them once in a blue moon. Building a strong social media presence implies being constantly active. This translates by posting regularly and also contributing to relevant topics where your industry expertise is relevant. A strong dose of engagement will make a big difference and recruiters will see it first. Be creative, active and always stay on top of conversations.

Social media matters and first impressions are everything. Watch what you post on your social accounts because recruiters are also looking. Learn to manage your accounts and give them that professional touch. Put yourself in the shoes of a recruiter and examine your online presence. If you like what you see, you’re on the right track. If not, start shaping it up based on the above tips.

About the Author:

Passionate about turning simple ideas into creative stories. Truly in love with storytelling, Ramona Costea has been active in the media writing and publishing business for over 8 years. She is now a Copywriter for Oracle’s Global Recruiting department, where she continues to experiment with social media and improve content strategy. Her specialties include content writing, online marketing, employer branding and social media.

Connect with her on LinkedIn and Twitter.

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