Job searching with social media – Day 1

For the past few months I have been looking for a new job, as well as working on updating my CV and all the other things that come with it. Up until yesterday I was unable to utilise social media in my job search, as I was on a contract pending renewal and I didn’t want to alert my previous employer, a company that heavily utilises Twitter, that I was looking elsewhere.

Now my situation has changed and I am now officially back on the job market and have entered full jobhunt mode. This means I can now use Twitter, Google+, Facebook and all other social networks to help me find a new and, hopefully, fulfilling role, in addition to the job searching I am already undertaking.

Katherine, also known as @TheSourceress, was asking me yesterday if I was thinking about blogging about my social media job searching and whilst I initially didn’t plan on doing so, I have since realised that it can only be advantageous, both from the point of view in finding a job for myself and also showing others that it can or cannot be done. I figure that surely there’ll be a point when everyone is bored enough of my updates to actually help find me a job and constant exposure means that it stays in people’s minds.

My skills and a quick list of previous jobs can be found in my previous post.

So what exactly do I have to start with?

  • A Twitter account with currently 996 followers – @carocat
  • The active #rdg hashtag with what I estimate around 40 people reading it on a daily basis – #rdg
  • A Google+ profile with 113 people in my circles – Cat Fu
  • A Facebook profile with 135 friends – Cat Fu
  • A tumblr blog with 740 followers – carocat on tumblr
  • This blog, receiving around 100-150 views a day currently though it’s not properly optimised these days – carocat.co.uk

Whilst those numbers are admittedly more than the average social media user [insert stuff on how I’ve been on each of those platforms for many years, yadda yadda], that isn’t it. Each one of those profiles and sites is followed by people with an incredibly large reach and I have the potential to gain exposure much beyond just my social circles.

I used to also have a LinkedIn profile, but deactivated that last year. Depending on how the next couple of months will go I might reactivate and repopulate it.

Let’s just take a look at the posts and tweets I have made yesterday and the response I have gotten:

  • Tweet: I #needanewjob in the Reading area. Customer service and copywriting primarily. Native German. Will take any full time job. Help me. #rdg [Link] – This tweet was retweeted by sixteen people.
  • Google+ post with more details [Link] – This was shared by three people.
  • Facebook post, again with more details. – This was seen by at least ten people based on the comments and private messages I received.
  • Blog post: Help me find a new job – This post has so far had 69 views.
  • Tweet for the blogpost [auto tweeting]: Help me find a new jobhttp://wp.me/p1ETs-13y [Link] – This was retweeted by four people.

For now I am discounting Facebook as a valuable tool for finding a new job, but my status update earlier hopefully achieved its aim in alerting friends that I am looking for a job.

Google+ isn’t so widely adopted, but the three people that shared my post have a combined 444 people in their circles.

Let’s break down Twitter, my main social network.

The first tweet was made at 4.30pm:

  • It included the #rdg hashtag, which has a lot of daily readers/viewers. As I said above, I estimate about 40 if not more. Seeing my tweet was retweeted over several hours this means it was probably seen by most and it is also currently the top tweet for that hashtag search.
  • It was retweeted by sixteen accounts.
  • Combining the followers of the seventeen accounts plus my own brings a whopping 12599 followers. Excluding bots, inactive accounts and overlapping will still leave several thousand.
  • Out of those accounts it was retweeted by six people I know or have met, one recruitment feed, one recruiter and five people generally active on the #rdg hashtag.
  • Six of the accounts that retweeted that don’t follow me. They make up 5689 of the followers.
  • I also received several direct messages as a result with people asking for more information.

The second tweet was made at 8.44pm:

  • It was an auto tweet from my blog, just like this post will be automatically tweeted.
  • It was retweeted by four accounts.
  • Combining the followers of the four accounts plus my own brings 2387 followers. Excluding bots and inactive accounts that still leaves about a thousand.
  • Out of the accounts it was retweeted by two people I have met or know, one regular #rdg hashtag follower and one follower of another account.
  • One of those accounts didn’t follow me though follows me now.
  • With this tweet there wasn’t much information and the lack of clickthroughs shows that it probably isn’t worth it tweeting something with such little info. As such I have modified the tweet that will accompany this blogpost to include more than just the title of the post: “This is officially my first day of unemployment. Please help me find a new job! Job searching with social media: [LINK]”

I think blogging about my job search will mostly help me and it will help me by giving me something to focus on. It by no means will be the main job searching I’ll do, but it’s something to keep me occupied and hopefully something that will yield results. With a newly updated CV, as well as plenty of motivation I am ready to kickstart this search and hopefully soon find something.

If you think you have a job I would be interested in, please contact me.

Additionally I will be grateful for any tips you may have on finding work.

6 Comments

  1. Posted September 30, 2011 at 11:45 am | Permalink

    Whilst social networks are great, used daily by myself and many connections I still feel that hunting for a job via them is somewhat limited to find a permanent position. It does have the potential to do so, but you need to be in luck with who your followers are and the chances of them knowing a job available in your industry you work in.

    Luckily I work within the website industry and many friends do too. I lost my job August 2010 and didn’t secure something properly until December however by initially tweeting out that I had lost my job I gained a response from a friend saying he had a 5 week contract job I could do at his company.

    That was quite a bit of luck, I just went straight into the job without even an interview and started working their straight away. After those weeks passed I was on the hunt again for a permanent position and I really had to rely on the job websites such as Reed and Monster. Had a few interviews and even one seemed really promising, however still didn’t get the job.

    I work for a advertising agency and we actually require copywriters quite regularly so will definately keep you in mind. I think the best thing to do is stick to the job boards and maybe try and do freelance copywriting. I’ve discovered that websites like http://www.peopleperhour.com are great to find copywriting and translation work. This could be right up your street until you find something permanent.

    Best of luck with finding something good.

    Tim

  2. Posted September 30, 2011 at 1:07 pm | Permalink

    Social Job Hunting is not a bad idea, and has worked well for me in the past – especially this year.
    But you’re not really embracing it.

    Instead of being “Social Job Hunting” it’s, job hunting via Twitter and Google+.
    It’s very much a subset, especially Google+ (you’re as well posting on mySpace right now – but that will change)

    I’m not saying it’s impossible, but you’ve already set limits on yourself to use a subset of your existing parameters, and that’s not benefitial to anyone.

    The reality is, that Recruiters are:
    1) Not technically savvy
    2) Sales people
    3) Not interested in working in a way that suits anyone but them.
    4) Want people and information to be delivered to them (/wave LinkedIn)

    That’s not me generalising or saying bad things about recruiters, it’s sadly just the way their industry works. It’s a sales lead industry, and that works by aiming for critical mass on a treid-and-tested platform (e.g Job Boards). While many recruitment firms have embraced Social Media, it is purely as a way of broadcasting their roles directly to you, therefore negating the Job Board work at their end. You still need to go to them.

    If I can give a little stat that I think you may find handy:

    I no longer send out my CV. I haven’t in 3 years. My CV is on my website, and anyone that wants it can go and get it. I’ll gladly send you the direct link, but not the actual CV. Out of the literally thousands of recruiters that call/e-mail/linkedin in the last 3 years, my CV has been downloaded less than 25 times; and my contact form used once.

    It’s honestly way too much time and effort for them. Again, not in a bad way. Recruiters don’t want to know “you”. They want your CV in a word format so that it’s scanned and put into a database that pulls out certain words that automattically add you to a mailling list. No recuiter is ever going to sit and read a blog post about the type of job you want or this social recruitment experiment. No recruiter is ever going to fill out your contact form.

    The reality is, if you really want a job rather than just testing out something cool (which is absolutely fine), you need to embrace change in the same way that sales people do: go with the path of least resistence. Right now, that’s LinkedIn. Twitter is really just a place where geeks post pictures of lolCats.

  3. Posted October 3, 2011 at 10:30 pm | Permalink

    Hi Tim, it’s something I’m definitely only doing in addition to all the other job searching I’m doing. I’ve had some promising actual replies to my tweets and the subsequent retweets and I’m curious to see how they’ll pan out in the coming weeks.

    People per hour is a great site. Someone else recommended it to me a while back and I should really look into it more now that I have the time to do so!

    Thanks!

  4. Posted October 3, 2011 at 11:15 pm | Permalink

    Hi Kevinjohn, thanks for the comment.

    Twitter is really just a place where geeks post pictures of lolCats

    See, I disagree with that statement. I have made many connections on Twitter not only through Tweetups, but also people I have met through it over the years.

    I think what I was mainly aiming for is people I know and their networks to see if they have any jobs going in their companies and perhaps would put in recommendations for me. The response so far has been quite good actually, surprisingly.

    Though that being said I did have two recruiters contact me with specific roles which was unexpected.

    LinkedIn is something I’ve had before, but I pretty much closed it down now. I don’t like all my past job history to be so easily accessible on the internet. Despite my blog and Twitter account I am actually a private person!

    We shall see what happens. :)

  5. Posted October 4, 2011 at 10:50 am | Permalink

    I can totally understand that you, and many other twitter users/lovers, disagree on my lolcats comments (which was partial tongue and cheek); but the idea that it’s not true based on your experiences with people you’ve met doesn’t really pan out.

    It’s a specific example (you) against the abstract (#HashtagsUsedByKidsToPromoteJustinBieber and lolcat pics).

    The reality is, in order to get anything out of twitter, you have to invest quite a bit of time into it. In essence, it’s the ultimate MMO. That’s never going to work for recruitment, because the risk is higher but reward is the same as more traditional or accepted methods.

    Hope the job search goes well :)

  6. Posted October 4, 2011 at 10:58 am | Permalink

    True, but that’s just Twitter en masse. I have a huge, local network of the people I was planning to target rather than recruiters not known by me/others. And to be fair I’ve invested a LOT of time in Twitter in over four years.

    So far it’s going ok I suppose, it’s early days I guess!


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