So you're a salesperson looking for job, and you've joined Twitter and LinkedIn, posted your resume and tweeted some sharp, pithy remarks about your career and your skills. You've also made sure your LinkedIn profile has a smart, professional picture, and details your experience. You've even done what so few people do and asked for a few good recommendations from previous bosses and colleagues.
And then you sit back and wait.
Now what? The fact is, being present on social networks and getting the basics done simply isn't enough. There are some tricks and tips that you really have to know if you're going to see some actual results.
1. Start Early
By the time your job hunt starts, you should already have followers and an established street creed. Don't wait till you are looking for a job -- start a Twitter account now, and post often. Follow companies you want to work with, follow your peers. Answer questions, post sales tips. "Establish yourself as an expert that is adding value to other people on Twitter," said Jeremy Ulmer, a sales coach with almost 10,000 twitter followers.
2. Don't Talk About Yourself
The big problem with salespeople on social media is that they're concentrating so much on selling themselves as a job candidate that when potential employers look them up, they don't see a subject matter expert with many connections. They just see a salesperson. "I see salespeople misusing it the worst," said Jeanine Tanner "J.T." O'Donnell, founder of Boston-based career website, Careerealism.com, and a self confessed Twitter junkie. "In social media, you don't talk about yourself." Possibly, just don't talk much at all. Lindsey Pollack, a career expert and consultant, said she uses Twitter like a news feed. "Connect with people separately based on what you've learned about them."
3. Don't Be Pushy
Don't follow a recruiter and ask for a job straightaway. Keep the job requests offline, and one-on-one, said O'Donnell. Twitter is not your job-search tool, it's your branding tool. O'Donnell said that it only takes one meaningful tweet to make a lasting impression. "If it doesn't have the ability to dramatically alter the way someone thinks about something, leave it out."
1. There's an App for That
LinkedIn was made for job-seekers. The networking site has paid upgrades where if you apply for a job through LinkedIn, your application goes to the top of the recruiter's list. "If you're in sales, it shows that you're invested in your job search," said Pollack, who is also a paid spokeswoman for LinkedIn. There are also the Amazon app that can show the books you've read recently -- add the books that pertain to sales and negotiation and show, instead of telling, that you're well read and knowledgeable.
2. Throw Away that Business Card
Look up the exact person at the exact company at the exact position you want -- and then proceed to take their job away. "See how they do it, and copy them," said Pollack. "If they did it, you can too."
As a salesperson, your biggest asset is your Rolodex, or in the case of LinkedIn, your connections. Connect with everybody you can who you consider a client, a business partner or a colleague. "Employers are looking to see what clients you will bring to the table, so make sure there are plenty," said O'Donnell.
3. Group Up
The best thing about LinkedIn is the groups. Lewis Howes, a former football player in the NCAA, credits social media for helping him find a job when he was seriously injured and couldn't play football any more. His new role? LinkedIn pro. Howes, who has written two books about LinkedIn, is a big believer in groups: both creating them and joining them. If you join a group and lead a discussion, your name pops up on the home pages of all the group members. Then when you've established yourself, email people personally and ask for a job, or some help.
Write to Shareen Pathak
Related: Using Social Media in a Job Search