6 Ways To Start Using Social Media In 2013

Putting your head in the sand when it comes to social media is no longer an option. Whether you want to communicate with your customers, or make contacts to find a new job, or network with others, you need to have a social media profile. Here are some tips on doing so:

Sign up with LinkedIn

If you are new to social media, or you are inexperienced with it,  you should set up a LinkedIn profile first. LinkedIn is a career-related site where millions of people connect with past and present co-workers, look for new employers, or just network with people in their field.  Did you know that many recruiters use LinkedIn as a place to find people to hire, and employers check out job applicants to see their work backgrounds? That is why it is crucial to have a LinkedIn profile, and one that accurately reflects your career. You can start by putting your resume into LinkedIn, and then expanding on it by listing your job skills, and getting others to recommend and endorse your work.

Have several places people can find you

Many people use Facebook for personal connections, LinkedIn for work-related ones, and Twitter as a mix of personal and professional.  Pinterest is also an up-and-coming social media site, as is Google Plus. You don’t have to sign up for all of these places, but try to pick two to get your feet wet with. As previously noted, LinkedIn is a must for professional use. As for the other social media sites, if you are not sure which ones to use, ask your friends what they use.  Facebook is the most popular personal site, but you may find that your friends are at other locations as well.

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Talk about yourself – but not too much

The idea behind social media is to be well, social. This means talking about yourself, and sharing details about your life. But be careful. If you haven’t used social media before, you may not be aware of this truism – anything you say can and will be used against you. And not only that, but it is very easy to get a reputation as a boor if you talk too much about yourself.

Follow interesting people

You can read what celebrities have to say on social media by checking out their Twitter or Facebook feeds. But keeping up with the Kardashians is not the only thing you can use social media for. Look for people in your field that you want to learn from. Career coach experts say you should look for people who are excellent at using social media, so you can learn from them.

Make an effort to spend time on social media

What often happens with neophytes with social media is that they set up a profile in LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and the like, and never do anything with it. Don’t let that happen to you. Instead, make a point of spending at least an hour or two a week working on your social media skills, reading others’ comments to see what is going on, finding new friends, and doing your own commenting. Good luck.

Don’t forget about Facebook or Google Plus

Both of these sites may have job and company information that could help you find your next employer. You could also meet people who can help you search for a job.

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