I will admit to being a bit of a newbie on Twitter, as I don’t have a ton of followers yet, but there are several things I have learned using this social media tool that I believe will help jobseekers and employees alike. Here are 10 practical tips to help you get more out of Twitter.
1) Get a real picture and write a real bio, even my slightly out of focus picture is far, far better than the twitter egg or some silly picture that makes no sense. While a little whimsy in your bio can be cute, don’t go too far – be professional, and think keywords.
2) Don’t judge a potential follower by their profession (within reason of course), but by their tweets and bio. Are they positive, in no way trying to take advantage of someone (i.e. buy 10,000 followers), avoiding constant cussing, racial slurs and bizarre remarks in their tweets, not overly political or religious, and can you speak their language at least enough to understand their tweets? Likewise, just because someone follows you doesn’t mean you have to follow them back.
3) Please don’t spam people by trying to sell them something via Twitter, especially when you are not connected.
4) Don’t engage in arguments and any other negative conversations (on any social media), it just makes you look bad to your workplace or potential employers that might hire you.
5) Use Twitter to link with people you might not be able to contact easily via LinkedIn – if they follow you back, you can invite them to connect with you on LinkedIn as well.
6) Don’t run your Twitter feed on your phone, as just like your Facebook feed it will take up too much of your precious free time, instead visit Twitter directly a few times a week.
7) Do post information about your area of expertise, whether you create the content yourself or share it from another source (retweet). Think work expertise specifically, and try to post at least a couple of times a week so you look active.
8) Avoid over-sharing, no one needs to know where you are 24/7, or that you really, really, really like hot dogs with sauerkraut.
9) Use hashtags # to learn and connect with others. Hashtags are essentially a subject area, like #JobSearch, where you can learn lots of great tips for a job search. You can also use hashtags in your own posts to help promote yourself to other followers.
10) Use Twitter to follow company’s you might want to target for employment, as most large and some medium-sized organizations have a career-related Twitter feed that posts jobs available regularly.
Be positive and professional in your posts and in those you follow and you will see your Twitter grow with quality connections and be seen as a knowledgeable and qualified in your field.