The economy in still in a proverbial spin cycle, and the financial experts change their minds almost on a daily basis on when the job market will improve.  Unemployment and job creation has been, and will continue to be, a hot topic amongst our political leaders.It’s time for the American public to take matters into their own hands and become a bit more creative when looking for employment.

linkedin-tabbed-profileIt is no longer adequate to scan the help wanted ads in the Sunday paper or cruise the big job boards such as Monster and Career Builder. Landing that perfect job that will not only be professionally fulfilling, but also pay the bills, is ever increasingly based on who you know rather than what you know. The best opportunities are not often advertised where the masses can find them, yet circulated around smaller groups of professionals.

Social media has become ever increasingly popular with Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube and lesser know LinkedIn.  These sites, with the exception of LinkedIn, have in the past been fun, social get-to-know-you sites, while LinkedIn started and continues to be a professional networking site.

So how do you land a job by using social media?  First things first, create an account on each with an easy to remember and probably more importantly, easy to spell user name.  Keep this account as your professional account especially if you are like me and enjoy ranting about sports during the games as calling the second baseman a total screw up is not all that endearing to potential employers. Next, start following some job sites that are pertinent to your line of work on Twitter and Facebook, it could be technology based or maybe your in the medical field. Whatever your expertise, a simple search of Twitter will yield you these agencies to follow and every area has it’s own local agencies that post job opportunities in timelines.  Subscribe to companies whom have YouTube accounts that you may be interested in working for and make sure you do this on Facebook as well. Next, start utilizing your existing contacts to make new ones on LinkedIn by following people you know and asking for recommendations on who they know that might help in your job search.  On the LinkedIn site you can also ask your contacts to write a professional recommendations on your behalf that will be displayed on your profile.

screen-shot-2010-10-17-at-53424-pmNow that you have done all this leg work the key to success is follow up.  When you see jobs posted on Twitter that you may be interested in, make sure you apply to them right away or save the tweet as a favorite until you can properly apply.  Keep an eye on companies YouTube and Facebook pages in an effort to find positions they need filled as well as checking out those companies sites for open positions.  Nurture your LinkedIn contacts and make sure you ask them if they know others that are looking to hire new employees.

I will not lie to you, this takes some effort to set up and continue to keep tabs on, but the rewards can be significant.  With more and more people out of work the competition for those precious openings is stiff and the trick is to find the openings that not everyone else will.  I speak from personal experience as I came across this writing position with Techno Buffalo by way of their twitter feed. What it comes down to is dedication to innovative ways of finding positions that will fit your skill set and it is not always by filling out the traditional employment application.