Four Tips for Students on Twitter
As you know, faithful readers, I'm fascinated by Twitter. A current student, and a colleague of mine, Scott Tsuchiyama (staff member at the UM Career Center), and I were discussing Twitter last week and he shared with me a blog post that he wrote for the Career Center. He shared with me this post to share with you!
Twitter is a free service that allows you to publish 140-character messages, also known as "tweets." These messages show up on your Twitter profile page, and to other Twitter users that have chosen to subscribe to your messages (your "followers").
The concept of Twitter and its usefulness can be difficult to understand at first; Influential Marketing Blog even created "The 5 Stages of Twitter Acceptance" with that in mind. Here's a rundown of a few ways students can use Twitter to aid in their job search:
Follow the Leaders. Twitter can give you access to the thoughts of some of the most influential people in your field -- actively seek out and 'follow' those people! Interested in information architecture? Follow @louisrosenfeld and (former SI faculty member) @morville. @librarythingtim is Tim Spalding, the founder of LibraryThing. Use a service like WeFollow to look up key individuals that are interested in the same things you are.
Brand Yourself. If you're using Twitter, there's a good chance you have a presence in other places online as well. Fill out your bio with information relevant to your professional interests, and add yourself to the aforementioned WeFollow with some good keywords. Make sure you include a link to your LinkedIn profile, professional blog, or digital portfolio. It's important to maintain a consistent image across all these resources, and will go a long way toward helping you present yourself as a professional in your field.
Job Postings. While Twitter is not a job posting site, there are some people out there who go out of their way to post job opportunities through their account. Check out @sfmobilejobs for Mobile Web and Digital Media positions in Silicon Valley, Seattle, LA and NYC. @StartUpHire lists positions with venture capital-backed start ups. Here's a list of Twitter profiles with job postings by state. There are even companies on Twitter that post open positions, including @attjobs (AT&T), @mtvnetworksjobs (MTV Networks), and @TRCareers (Thomson Reuters).
Add Value. Most people who question the value of Twitter see it as a simple 'status update' platform where people talk about what they ate for lunch. While that does work for some, the vast majority of us do not lead very interesting lives (or have the wit to make our lives seem funny).
It's extremely important to add value if you're going to use Twitter. As blogger Adam Lisagor says, "I don’t mind if you tweet that you’re eating a sandwich as long as you say how it tastes." So say something interesting or thought provoking. Ask a question. Provide a link to a great resource. And don't do this.
The Career Center
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515 E. Jefferson St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48109
Posted by kkowatch at April 15, 2009 10:19 AM