I think most job seekers have gotten the word that they need to integrate social media into their search efforts, but I’m getting a bit alarmed at what some of them are Twittering.
“I’m eating a baloney sandwich.”
“I’m totally hungover from last night. Don’t even know the guy in my bed.”
“I hate my life. I hate looking for a job. “
Then, there are the bios: “A party kind of gal who loves Beanie Babies and eating raw cookie dough.”
Or, “Crazed man with a mission to break as many laws as possible.”
OK, enough. While there are plenty of tutorials about how to Twitter, I’m going to give tips specific to job hunters.
1. Fill out your bio. This is your chance to grab the attention of potential employers or other professionals. Don’t EVER leave it blank. If you don’t care who you are and what you have to offer, no one else will. Keep it professional. If you want to include a personal detail or two, keep it tame: “Cardinals baseball fan” or “avid skier.”
2. Post a professional photo. Don’t use photos that qualify you for the cover of Maxim or show you in your Captain Kirk outfit.
3. Provide a professional link. In your bio, provide more information on LinkedIn or another professionally focused site.
4. Be a valuable Tweeter. No employer cares what you had for lunch. Provide links to current industry news, or information on how to solve a problem – or how you solved a problem.
5. No whining. We all know the job market is tough and looking for work can be difficult. But employers want to get to know people who confront challenges and are energized by them. When you blame outside forces for your woes: “The economy sucks. My state sucks. My school sucks,” employers fear the bitching could extend to them if they employ you, so they move on.
6. Clean tweets, only. Don’t tweet – or retweet – anything profane, racist, sexist or anything you wouldn’t say to your grandmother.
7. No inanities. Employers don’t care if you’re going to bed, what you had for lunch or whether you are going shopping. If you can’t think of something valuable or interesting to tweet, don’t tweet at all.
8. Never use the word “desperate.” I’ve seen people say they’re “desperate” to find a job, either in their bio or their tweet, or both. Big mistake. Employers never hire “desperate” people.
9. Sound smart. Use proper punctuation, grammar and spelling. Using all lower case and lots of text acronyms makes you look and sound like an eighth grader.
10. Forget the personal health issues. You want employers to see you as robust, energetic and raring to go. If you tweet that you’ve got bunions, a urinary tract infection or a “weird rash on your leg,” they’ll move onto healthier prospects.
What are some other tips for job seekers on Twitter?