With social media embedded in society, people have an increased interest in learning how to work with it or how to use it for business. This applies not only to new graduates, but also seasoned marketing professionals who haven’t used social media as a business tool. Talent acquisition professionals and recruiters also seem to be together curious about how to tap into the social networks to attract candidates.

Keeping that in mind, I put together some steps to help you get started in social media or social recruiting.

First thing’s first

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I firmly believe that social media is a tool to create relationships. It’s a two-way street where one provides value to the community to get something in return. As in any relationship, the more you put into it, the more you’ll get out of it.

So if you are starting a relationship, let’s make sure you put your best foot forward. Since we are talking about using social media for business, make sure you look good on the professional network, LinkedIn. Update your LinkedIn profile following all the best practices. Pay close attention to:

  • Photo
  • Customized URL
  • Headline
  • Summary
  • Experience

Here is an infographic and a cheat sheet for you to build the perfect LinkedIn profile.

Recruiters, note that you have special LinkedIn profile guidelines.

Step 1: Read some key books

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It’s a good idea to understand how transformational social media has been and what makes it tick. Here are a couple recommendations:

Recruiters, check out some stats in this infographic: “How Recruiters and Job Seekers Use Social Media.”

Step 2: Subscribe to the following blogs and read them on a daily basis

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By constantly referring to social media blogs you’ll learn about strategies for the different social networks, the challenges and tips on how to overcome them, as well as case studies.

You may also like these handy lists of social media experts for you to follow:

Recruiters, here are a couple of social recruiting blogs to add to the above list – focus on their social media categories.

Learn by doing. Ready to get your hands dirty? Let’s go!

Step 3: Think of something you are passionate about.

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It could be your profession or it could be a hobby or interest (like sports or fashion).

Step 4: Listen.

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See what others are saying about your passion on Twitter, blogs, Facebook, Instagram, etc.

Step 5: Learn about blogs and SEO

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Step 6: Write about your passion

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  • If you like to write, you can start your own blog.
  • If you are just okay with writing, you can publish your content on Medium or LinkedIn Pulse (if your passion is related to your profession).
  • If you don’t like to write, you can curate content. Find content that’s interesting to your target group, package it well and share it on your chosen social channels.

Hint 1: Even if you love to write, you should be curating relevant content and sharing it on your social channels. It’s very important that you share third-party content.

Hint 2: Create a content calendar. This way, you know exactly what to share and when. It will also help you get organized for creating content. What you DO NOT want to do is start with a consistent flow of content and stop or not post regularly.

Bonus! Canva is a free and easy tool for you to create graphics for your blogs or social media content posts.

Step 7: Decide on social channels

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You can start with one and work up to more. Make sure to research who you should connect with (or follow).

Hint: Think of your passion and the people that may be interested in the content you will write about – which social channel is your target group using? Start there!

LinkedIn

On LinkedIn, you’ll build your personal brand.

Recruiters, here are steps to building your recruiter brand on LinkedIn.

Twitter:

Make sure you understand Twitter business etiquette. It’s a conversation, so engage with other users and retweet a lot.

Recruiters, here is a handy infographic.

Facebook

If your content is about business, and even if it’s not, you may not want to blast it to your family and friends. It’s a good idea to create a Facebook page and invite your network to ‘Like’ it.

Hint: You can have a Facebook page for a person (e.g. Mari Smith)

Want to dive a bit deeper? Go through the free tutorials provided by Facebook and get certified.

Recruiters, here are three Facebook hacks every recruiter should know. Also, if your company has a Facebook Careers page, you may want to read these tips.

Instagram

Smart photos and graphics along with hashtags are key for using Instagram for business.

Recruiters, this is a handy recruiter’s guide to Instagram.

YouTube

If you are into videos, I would advise that you learn about YouTube. Just like with Facebook pages, you may want to create a YouTube Channel to host your videos.

Recruiters, here is what you should know when it comes to using video to attract talent.”

Snapchat

The newest kid on the block – if you have no clue what it is, you need to read “What’s the Point of Snapchat and How It Works.” If you are on Snapchat and are wondering how to use it for business, check out this guide. Entrepreneur also has also a good article about it.  This infographic has insights on why brands should be on Snapchat.

Recruiters, here is a recruiter’s guide to Snapchat, as well as a list of recruitment pros on Snapchat.

Pinterest

Think images! People pin images, so your content needs to have compelling images in order to be successful on Pinterest.

Recruiters: Here is some food for thought regarding recruiters on Pinterest.

Step 8: Test

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Once you start you need to test the best way to share your content on the different social channels.

Important! Make sure to share not only your content, but also share other relevant content that may be interesting to your fans and followers. The rule is that for every self-promoting status update, you should have five third-party posts.

Step 9: Analyze

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So you are posting content and testing different formats, but how do you know if things are working? Check the social network analytics!  Each social network offers ways for you to check out the results of your work, such as which posts are more engaging, which posts reached a greater number of people, etc.

Make sure to take a deep dive into those stats every three months. It’s the only way you’ll learn what to improve with your strategy.

Step 10: Have fun!

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This process should be fun, so make the most out of it.

Finally, I wanted to leave you with a handy Social Media Glossary and a Beginner’s Guide to Social Media – I hope you find them helpful! And recruiters, you can also refer to “Effective Social Media Tactics for Recruiters.”

If you have questions or comments, I’d love to connect – leave us a comment and let’s start the conversation.