When you apply for a job, it’s one thing to say that you’re an expert in a certain area, but how can you show employers it’s true? Build an online presence. How do you do that? Read on.
Stop and think
There are a number of tips in this article, but you shouldn’t just dive willy-nilly into all of them. Take the time to think about which ones will work for you. Make sure you can realistically maintain them. The first thing is to decide where you want to start building your reputation.
Set up a blog where you can post news and tips about your industry or speciality. Post well-thought out pieces regularly and make sure you include a link in your application.
You should also think carefully about which platform to set up your blog on. Options include WordPress.com, WordPress.org, Blogger, Tumblr, and TypePad. The questions you should be asking yourself are how simple you want the process to be, how much you want to be able to edit the look of the blog and whether you are willing to pay for functionality.
Publish your content on other sites
If you don’t want to build and maintain a whole blog, think about writing pieces on sites like Linkedin (94% of employers use Linkedin to vet candidates, according to a Jobvite survey) or Medium. These sites are easy to use and there are ready-made communities waiting for you. Even if you start your own blog, these sites can be a great place to share your posts for more reach.
If long-form isn’t for you, then maybe Twitter is. Follow and engage with other users in your field. Make sure you are adding something relevant to the conversation and, again, don’t forget to put the link in your application.
If you decide to produce a blog or long-form content on another site, it’s still great to get involved on Twitter alongside that. You can also promote your other content to your followers.
Forget about Facebook. Whether you have a profile or not is irrelevant, that is a place for your private life.
The easiest way to show you know what you’re talking about? Answer questions about it. Make a Quora profile and search for relevant questions to show off your smarts. Take the time to write a solid answer that is really helpful to the asker.
Now that we have some ideas about which sites to use, here are some tips on how to go about things.
Don’t be half-assed
If you are going to do any of these things, do them properly. Post regularly, spell-check, proofread, upload a photo and write a proper bio.
Find a niche and stick to it. You should also be consistent about how frequently you publish content. Even if you’re going on holiday, prepare some content in advance, so that you don’t leave a gap.
Show the real you
Don’t start writing about something you couldn’t care less about just because you think it will look good. You will need genuine enthusiasm to write well and maintain regularity. Pick an aspect of your work that interests you and don’t be too stiff – show some personality when you post.
Don’t show everything about yourself, though. Keep drunken pics from happy hour and cute cats private. Concentrate on posting relevant content that will position you as a strong candidate.
Give and take
There’s no point just throwing content out there and expecting it to be lapped up. You need to become part of a community and take the time to engage with what others are doing. Like, share, comment.
These tips should get you started on building an online presence that you can be proud of when a potential employer comes looking, the rest is down to you.
Featured Image: Flickr.com
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