This week, Allie Hunt from The Muse stopped by #bufferchat to share her insights about how to use social media while making career changes. We talked all about how to establish your social brand before and during a job search, tips for making meaningful connections on social media, and so much more!

Catch our weekly Twitter chat, #bufferchat, at TWO times every Wednesday for valuable industry insights and networking with nearly 400 other smart marketers and community managers. Same topic, same place, just at different times – feel free to join in to whichever chat time works best for you!

For our community in Asia and Australia (or anyone in other timezones that like this time the best!): 4 pm AEST (Sydney time, UTC+10)

For our community in North/South America, Europe and Africa (or others!): 9 am PT (California time)

*p.s. we’d love to learn more about you, our community! Would you be up for filling out this quick 1-2 minute survey? It will help us make sure we’re focusing on the right topics in #bufferchat and in our community projects. 🙂 Thank you!

Bufferchat: Making Career Changes on June 15, 2016

This week’s stats:
1st Bufferchat: 90 participants; 487 tweets; reach of 313,119
2nd Bufferchat: 326 participants; 2,160 tweets; reach of 1,868,775

Q1: During a career change or job search, what are some tips for establishing your social brand?

From Allie:

  • Real talk – your social presence IS your personal brand, & employers use it as a research tool… personally & professionally.
  • Don’t underestimate the power of social media as a tool to boost your career. Show off all that knowledge, skill set, & drive.
  • Jump into social conversations in areas that interest you professionally! It’s a great way to network & show your expertise.

From the community:

  • “Always good to build your authority & influence in your new/desired role by sharing relevant content & connecting w/ others.” @NicoleMSumner
  • “Curate an open and transparent personal brand that showcases your personality and valuable qualities. Be authentic.” @KatLoughrey
  • “Consistency across platforms. Same domain name, headshots, & logos for Twitter/LinkedIn/IG/etc. Makes you easier to find!” @GeoffTBlosat
  • “Stay positive, employers look to social media to get a sense of who you are. The more positivity the better.” @carey_casile
  • “Be attentive & active! The perfect time to do some social media spring cleaning/maintenance is when you’re on the job hunt.” @sola_eclipses

See all the great answers to question 1 here!

Q2: How has social media impacted the job search process?

From Allie:

  • Wait. How HASN’T it? 🙂
  • A little stat for you all – 92% of companies are using social media for hiring (& we’re not only talking about LinkedIn).
  • Thought I’d share these *super helpful tips on making social media part of your #jobsearch strategy:

From the community:

  • “Companies can learn so much more about you without even interacting with you. #SoMe has allowed resumes to become ‘alive’.” @Troy_Sandidge
  • “The internet is powerful and has opened up jobs and paths for me I wouldn’t have otherwise found. Not just social, BTW.” @ReginaWalton
  • “I find social media makes it easier for a candidate to learn how their desired org treats its customers & prospects.” @jacobhenenberg
  • #Socialmedia has leveled the playing field and allows more access to everyone. Think about how you want to stand out.” @ronniecharrier
  • “Social media has made more information available than ever before, more ways to showcase your work, more ways to network.” @SparkTheAgency

See all the great answers to question 2 here!

Q3: What are best practices for using social media to make meaningful connections during a job search?

From Allie:

  • Be authentic, always. Put some real thought into every tweet, LinkedIn message, blog post – it’ll go a long way.
  • Oh, also! Here are even more tips on how to use social media to boost your career:

From the community:

  • “Be an authentic human being; be proactive and start conversations with industry experts and show that you know your stuff!” @danielleirogers
  • “I use Twitter to follow-up after meeting people IRL. Having only 140 characters helps keep it sharp and informal!” @CKishazy
  • “Participate in chats like this, find industry experts and ask questions, set yourself apart as an industry expert too!” @laura_bauman
  • “Try niche channels. I want to get into tech so I joined @WomenWhoCode DC team on @SlackHQ.” @cahmusicluvr
  • “When reaching out to someone, don’t do it because you need something – be genuine and establish a relationship.” @anniebearvu

See all the great answers to question 3 here!

Q4: How can you use social media to break into a new industry when changing careers?

From Allie:

  • Networking is a BIG part of changing careers. & social is a great networking tool. Ask for informational interviews & advice.
  • Another v important thing? Use social media to LEARN. About new industries, leaders, skills. SO much knowledge to tap into.

From the community:

  • “Be ready to join the conversation. Talk about what’s happening in the news and engage yourself with a new industry.” @whatitisjaackie
  • can be used as a CAREER research tool & by following industry leaders on to stay relevant.” @ChrisThames29
  • “You can use industry hashtags to join communities and conversations, making a voice for yourself in that area.” @kathryndlewis
  • “Be super observant! Start building a new network and find out what you need to do to get into that industry.” @Yolande_MT
  • “Learn, learn, learn all you can from orgs and leaders on social. Be a sponge – ask questions and engage.” @GailMarieCole

See all the great answers to question 4 here!

Q5: What can you do if you discover a company you love but find they’re not hiring?

From Allie:

  • Stay connected w them! Let them know you’re interested, & continue to engage w them on social (your hustle will be noticed).

From the community:

  • “Start engaging with them!! Building a quality relationship can open more doors in the future!” @RCPatchett
  • “Companies are always hiring, that’s what a CEO told me recently, they may not advertise, so you need to knock.” @abelekene
  • “Connect and engage with them on social.. become a #brandadvocate — they’ll take notice.” @socialeyze
  • “Never be discouraged, connect with them and show them your value & your passion. They might not now they needed you yet.” @Geomk
  • “Reach out anyway. Put yourself out there so they know who you are (and let them know some of your skills).” @Heysarao

See all the great answers to question 5 here!

Q6: What are great online resources for discovering new career possibilities?

From Allie:

From the community: 

See all the great answers to question 6 here!

Q7: Have you ever made a big career change? If so, what advice would you share with others?

From Allie:

  • We know making a big career change can be scary, but you deserve to have a career you love (so go for it!).
  • In the spirit of today’s awesome #bufferchat – we’ve rounded up 10 seriously fantastic companies #hiring this month:

From the community:

  • “Yes! Last month I quit my job, moved to new city for a new company. My advice: follow your gut, prioritize team + experience.” @SuhailaSKB
  • “Yes & my best advice is: Don’t be afraid to explore new things! You may find new passions along the way, don’t ignore them.” @Typ0Queen
  • “Spend lot of time on understanding new domain, do not afraid to experiment, connect with new peers & read a lot.” @s4socialmedia
  • “Don’t be afraid. Everyone started at some point and it’s never too late. get out there and make a good name for yourself!” @kjaymiller
  • “Your happiness is worth the time, change, growth it may take!!” @heidilauren
  • “Yes. Always be a scholar to your profession because there is always someone that is smarter than you. Always ask Q’s.” @whatitisjaackie
  • “Yes! Be helpful, serve, ask, give, learn. Don’t be a show-off, rather a show-how.” @Yolande_MT

See all the great answers to question 7 here!

Thank you so much to Allie for sharing all of her awesome insights, and to everyone who participated in this chat!

Catch #bufferchat each Wednesday at 9 am PST, 12 pm EST, 5 pm BST (GMT+1)  **OR** at 4 pm AEST (Sydney time, UTC+10). Join our Slack community with over 2,000 members to continue these awesome conversations all week long!

Do you have any comments or answers to these questions? Leave your thoughts in the comments! We’d love to hear from you!

Image sources: UnSplash

Looking for a better way to share on social media?

Schedule, publish & analyze your posts across the top social networks, all in one place.

Start a 14-Day Free Trial
Written by Arielle Tannenbaum

Community Strategist at Buffer. In addition to her love of community building, Arielle also loves vegetables, cooking, practicing yoga, meditating, living mindfully, and exploring the connections between health and happiness!