If you want to build your personal brand, establish an online presence, and be in the right place at the right time for your job search, then you have to utilize social media. The big 3 social media sites are LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook. While LinkedIn is focused more fully on business, and Facebook leans toward the social, Twitter lands somewhere in the middle. Nearly 75 million people visited Twitter in January 2010.
Twitter relies on "tweets," which are posts of 140 characters or less. They're short, but frequent. Life moves fast on Twitter. But then, the world moves fast and this is a way to keep up. And yes, while some tweets are huge time-wasters (some of us don't want to know what someone else had for breakfast), there's quite a bit of useful information you can gain from following the right people. It's both a way to research and a way to network. You can follow companies, customers, suppliers, vendors, industry experts, and recruiters who post jobs–anyone who's going to be useful for you. You'll be able to keep up-to-the minute current. And then you can be useful yourself–pass along job leads, industry info, or the great book you just read. Any help or advice you can provide your contacts is a nice way to contribute.
You can ask questions, find people, and make contacts. Look for people to follow on www.twellow.com. You can search medical device, laboratory, surgical, diagnostics, clinical, molecular…you get the drift. You can search for any keywords that matter to you at search.twitter.com.
There are all kinds of ways to use Twitter for your job search. More and more companies are getting involved, and 75 million people means you ought to be able to find a job lead or two. You can put your elevator pitch in your bio, and provide links to your resume, LinkedIn page, or anything else that's cool about you. Check out my Top Twitter Tips for more tips on how to use Twitter for your job search.
The point is: Twitter is a fantastic networking tool. And networking is critical to the success of your job search and your long-term career.