It's certainly a challenging time to be looking for work. But you can boost your chances of getting an interview by using the internet to promote your personal brand to employers.
Blogs, Facebook and Twitter give you the tools you need to project the image of a proactive, passionate and enthusiastic up and coming professional that employers should be fighting over to get in their organisation.
How to build your personal brand
Facebook - It's no secret that employers now use Facebook to screen candidates. But before you rush off to lock your profile from prying eyes, Facebook can be used to your advantage. Update your public details to give employers a positive impression, such as information on your work experience, hobbies, interests and qualifications. In the 'About me' section write a positive, inspiring branding statement that reflects why employers should give you an interview. Replacing your profile photo of you wearing a traffic cone with one in which you look smart, responsible and sober is also a good idea.
LinkedIn - Your old school and university friends are a good starting point for building your professional network. In particular, connect with those who graduated in previous years and are already active in the workplace. You never know who'll be able to point you towards a job opening or can put in a good word for you. Join discussion groups related to the industries you're interested to get some insight into the hot topics and to ask astute questions - you never know who might have an opening for a proactive graduate.
Blogging - Blogs are great for expressing your passion and interest in the profession you'd like to get into. You can also use it as an online resume, with pages on your employment history and interests. There are plenty of sites where you can start a blog for free (e.g. Wordpress.com) which enable you to be up and blogging in minutes.
Twitter - Sharing links to your blog, reTweeting experts in your industry and posting links to relevant news stories will help to build your exposure amongst professionals in your targeted industry. Following experts in your field to get you an insight into the key trends and if they follow you back, you never know, it might lead to a job opportunity.
Whether you're a graduate, school leaver or have recently been made redundant, finding a job at the moment isn't going to be easy. But social media can give you a platform to demonstrate the enthusiasm, passion and proactive attitude that will tick all the right boxes with employers and push you further to the front of the queue.
BDA (Buckingham Design Associates) blog - real people giving real opinions, and a complete lack of agency waffle. BDA deliver an exciting blend of design and creative marketing for the Oxford, Milton Keynes, Northampton and London region.