Twitter played a huge part in getting me my first job in the public relations industry.
With dissertation hand in looming and end of year exam revision cramming underway, I thought I’d share some tips on how you can use social media to help to find you a job too.
1 – Follow people you are interested in
It is well worth investing time following PR agencies, PR professionals, in-house teams, industry bodies … as many people as you can! Use Twitter lists to easily categorise the accounts that you’re following and ensure you’re checking in on a regular basis to see what they are talking about.
2 – Get yourself heard
Twitter (and other social media channels) give you a perfect opportunity to speak to people directly. Your email for work experience might get lost among hundreds of others, but a well thought out tweet could mean you’re speaking directly to the CEO or MD.
Have they asked for ideas or advice? Share some. Have they posted a blog? Thank them for sharing and explain what you found interesting. Read something you think they might like? Share it with them. It doesn’t have to be much, but it might mean when you do apply for a job, they will already have a positive image of you.
3 – Live tweet events
If you’re at an industry event, live tweet. Quotes from speakers, key themes, photos, people you’ve met … there’s always something that you can be talking about. Use and follow the event hashtag (if there is one) and make sure you research and follow any relevant accounts beforehand (keynote speakers, panellists, businesses etc.)
Make sure you engage with other people tweeting about the event too – you never know who might be there. And, if you were planning on attending an event but couldn’t, follow the hashtag anyway and join in the conversations where you can.
4 – Don’t be afraid to ask
If you’ve built up a bit of a relationship with someone, don’t be afraid to ask them for advice. I found that PR professionals were more than willing to share their thoughts on my blog posts when asked, recommend books to read or people to follow, or even to let me know of any jobs coming up.
5 – Demonstrate your skills
It can be hard as a newly graduated PR student – everyone is looking for experience, but you haven’t got any yet. Think again!
- You could start a blog and share your thoughts and ideas, demonstrating how you keep up to date with the industry’s trends.
- If you’re particularly interested in design, share some of your posters and graphics on social media.
- Or, perhaps you know a family member or friend with a small business or are part of a local community group. Why not offer them support in social media management in return for being able to use it in your portfolio.
There are so many ways to demonstrate your skills.