How to Use Social Media Effectively in Your Job Search

Social media platforms are valuable tools for graduate job seekers, offering unique opportunities to connect with employers, showcase skills, and discover hidden job vacancies.
Jevitha Muthusamy
Editorial Writer
How to Use Social Media Effectively in Your Job Search

As a fresh graduate in Malaysia, you may have already heard that effectively harnessing the power of social media in your job search can significantly enhance your chances of success. However, this involves more than just creating and publishing a LinkedIn account and then sitting back and waiting! You’ll need to put in some work to maintain a strong and consistent online presence that sets you apart from the crowd.

Here are some tips on how you can get the most out of social media in your graduate job search, whether through LinkedIn or beyond!

Polish Your Online Presence

Before diving into the job search, take the time to review and optimise your social media profiles.

  • Curate platforms: Recruiters will run background checks of candidates on social media, so check your privacy settings to make sure you are only publicly searchable on your chosen platforms. You don’t want them to stumble on your personal Instagram or TikTok accounts, for example!   
  • Update your profiles: Ensure that your professional LinkedIn, Facebook, or Twitter profiles are up-to-date with relevant information. You may also want to do a quick timeline check and unpublish/delete any old content that may seem problematic or ill-informed. 
  • Have a professional profile picture: Use a high-quality, professional-looking photo across your social media profiles. Avoid using overly casual or inappropriate images.
  • Be consistent: Maintain consistent branding across platforms by using a consistent username or handle (if possible) and utilising a similar professional bio or personal summary.
  • Be a positive influence: If you are a social media influencer of any sort, make sure your public online brand is suitably appropriate for the jobs you plan to apply for. For example, if your online brand revolves around reviewing snacks or junk food, you may not want to apply for roles at health food or medical companies! 

Leverage LinkedIn's Power

LinkedIn is currently the most popular platform for professional networking and job searches. However, it only works if you are actively using it! You can maximise its potential with these strategies.

  • Build a compelling profile: Craft a comprehensive and engaging LinkedIn profile that highlights your skills, experiences, and achievements. Use relevant industry-specific keywords and phrases to further boost your visibility.
  • Connect strategically: Expand your professional network by connecting with university seniors and alumni, industry professionals, and recruiters you meet at career events. Personalise your connection requests to make a memorable impression.
  • Engage with content: Actively engage with current industry-related content, share insightful articles, and comment on relevant posts to establish yourself as a knowledgeable and engaged professional.
  • Take it offline: Ironically, one of the best uses of LinkedIn is to meet people offline. Use it to follow or chat with people in your network and find out if they will be attending any professional events near you. You can show up at those events to establish/deepen connections in-person and make sure you really stand out in your contacts’ minds!  

Follow Industry Experts and Companies

One of your key goals is to portray yourself as someone who’s up to date on the latest industry news and trends. You can do this by following industry experts, influencers, and companies.

  • Identify thought leaders: Seek out industry professionals who are active on social media and who share valuable insights in your desired field. Follow them to gain knowledge and stay informed.
  • Follow companies of interest: Follow companies you aspire to work for to stay informed about their business updates, job openings, and company culture.
  • Engage with their content: Interact with posts from companies and industry experts by leaving thoughtful comments, sharing related content, or asking questions. This kind of engagement can help you establish a presence and catch the attention of recruiters.

Showcase Your Skills and Projects

If your chosen field is one that requires showcasing past samples of work, social media platforms can provide an excellent opportunity to showcase your skills and highlight your past projects.

  • Create an online portfolio: If your field allows for it, create an online portfolio or website to showcase your past work, projects, and achievements. Include links to this portfolio in your social media profiles.
  • Share work-related content: Share samples of your work, such as design projects, articles, or presentations, to demonstrate your skills and expertise. Where possible, you can also write commentary to showcase your thought process. 
  • Use the right tool for the job: Not everything has to be published on the social media platform itself. You can also link your posts to other platforms like Instagram, Behance, or SlideShare to visually showcase your work.

Engage in Professional Groups and Discussions

Joining industry-specific groups and participating in relevant discussions can expand your network and increase your visibility. However, you will need to be a bit careful about this!

  • Join LinkedIn groups: Find and join LinkedIn groups relevant to your field of interest. Engage in discussions, share insights, and connect with professionals who share similar interests.
  • Participate in Twitter chats: Look for Twitter chats related to your industry and participate by sharing your thoughts, asking questions, and connecting with fellow participants.
  • Contribute to online forums: Participate in industry-specific online forums or discussion boards where professionals share knowledge and seek advice. This can help you establish yourself as an active and knowledgeable member of the community.
  • Know when to quit: However, remember that any sort of online discourse can veer into unexpected directions very quickly. It’s important to know when to disengage from any discussion and move on once it stops being productive.
  • Don’t start debates: If someone disagrees with you in a discussion, don’t get defensive or drawn into starting a public debate. That is never a good look. Simply thank the person politely for their opinion and move on.