Who Is Getting Jobs on Twitter?
Warning: This might lead you to realize the flaws in your current job searching strategy. If you want to cling to the mistakes you are making, stop reading. Think Twitter for Jobs.
According to twopcharts.com, 10 new Twitter accounts are opened every second. Currently there are reportedly 614 mio. Twitter users and the landmark 700 million number should be hit by September 30th this year, if the current trajectory holds.
On April 23rd, 2012, CNN informed that Facebook hit its 900th million user. [http://money.cnn.com/2012/04/23/technology/facebook-q1/index.htm]
The first Facebook user (Mark perhaps – who knows? – someone actually asked this question on Yahoo Answers!) was registered on (or about) February 2004. Twitter was founded July 2006.
The growth of these socially relevant services is phenomenal. If accounts would be compared to citizens, Facebook would rank the 3rd largest country in the world and Twitter the 4th.
What has this got to do with jobs and careers? Everything. Look at the title of this article “who is getting jobs on Twitter?”
Well the question is obvious. Everybody talks Facebook and has done so for years but the current buzz is definitely on Twitter. Just look at the growth trajectory. The question looms. Can you get a job via Twitter? Let’s look at this. Without a doubt, Twitter is a great and easy to use tool that allows quick and instant communication, status updates, sharing of information, intelligence, whereabouts etc. But can you get a job on Twitter (Not with the company!). Well sort of. Twitter can help you get a job and this is how. Twitter allows you to follow someone or be followed by someone. It allows you to network and through this, you can potentially be invited for job interviews, be recommended, be referenced or you can tweet of course that you are in the market looking. Through your followers i.e. those that follow you on Twitter, job opportunities can be passed. I am yet to see any reference to anyone actually being tweet-offered a job, exclusively via Twitter. I can’t rule out that this may have happened but the evidence, should it exist, would be scarce and remote.
Twitter is not a “get me a job” quick fix. To be truly efficient, you will need a multi-layered approach in your job hunt. This includes the usual in terms of networking, searching for jobs on-line/off-line, preparing applications, resumes and cover letters. The whole lot. The day may come, eventually, where you can tweet “I hereby apply for the job reference XYZ123456 as a Quality Controller. Please find my resume here http://www.linktomyresume.com” and expect to be hired based on this. Don’t laugh.
Using online tools, be it Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, LinkedIn etc. requires you to be known in Cyberspace. You need to have followers. You need credibility and trust. This is earned over time and does take time. Don’t expect a huge following over night. For most, building on-line networks is an ongoing process and one that requires solid focus and efforts. It can be very valuable and it is to most but plan to invest time and efforts in getting the right contacts following you and focus on who you chose to follow.
Your usage of social media tools should be steady and regular and for the long haul. Do not focus on media spurts only to your advantage and e.g. only at the points in time when you are job hunting. The thought process is the same as that of a blogger who tries to establish his/her online presence. Blog followers are appropriately skeptical and are in their due rights to be. According to http://www.adminesolutions.com/ there are 152 mio. blogs on the internet as per 31/5/2012. This does provide for choice alternatives by internet citizens and commands the blog owners to earn credibility and provide value to entice blog followers. Same analogy applies to other social media. Ask yourself: “why would someone be my Twitter follower?”. You don’t get followers by just having an account! Think brand management and brand marketing. In social media, you are “a product” and you will be judged by the value it yields. What value do you offer that will get followers to haunt you for tweet status updates and information?
Twitter is great but from a professional point of view your starting point ought to be LinkedIn. The key advance with LinkedIn is the quality of the community, the opportunity you have to profile yourself, to network with others e.g. via group associations and to apply for (or post) jobs available.
That said, do not make the mistake of putting all your eggs in one basket. Like on Facebook and Twitter, the number of LinkedIn accounts is in the millions [161 mio according to Wikipedia] and while that is a huge number, from a job sourcing and application point of view LinkedIn is still in its infancy. You need to cast your net wide and deep at the same time and keep in mind, that while technology solutions like social media, LinkedIn included of course, has gained and will continue to gain a lot of traction, very very many companies and hiring manages still base their hiring process on “old school” ways.
Take home points:
- Start building your professional social media presence. Invest in it, it takes time and lots of efforts
- Work with the job search engines as efficiently as you can.
- Work with your head hunters of choice
- Keep perfecting your resume and cover letters. Make them relevant. Generic tools do more harm than good.
- Maintain solid “old school” techniques
All combined will multiply by several factors your chances of landing your dream job of choice.