Almost everyone is on social media nowadays, but just because you use social media for fun, doesn’t mean you’re an expert and know how to use social media while on the job. In other words, personal social media experience doesn’t equate to professional experience, and your resume needs to highlight that professional experience more than anything. Or, at the very least, it needs to address how your personal experiences can inform the job at hand. The question stands: How do you go about doing that?
As with any resume, you need to show why you’re a good fit for the job, what you’ll bring to the company, and why your social media experience makes you stand out from the enormous crowd. Let’s take a look at how you can highlight your social media experience on your resume in a professional and selling manner.
You need to clean up your social media presence before you can start tailoring your resume. This means getting rid of photos that show you drinking, smoking and the like. Photos of nudity should also be removed. You should also be editing your profiles to make sure everything is grammatically correct.
Now is also the opportunity to post interesting updates; while a potential employer doesn’t want to read about your bar hopping last night, they do want to see you sharing interesting news stories and posting good content that shares your passions and starts discussions.
While you always have the option of not including a link to one of your social media profiles —
particularly if it’s used for solely personal purposes — just keep in mind that unless you have very strict privacy settings, chances are your future employer can still find it on their own by Googling you.
The resume starts with your ‘objective.’ Rather than using this space as a place to talk about your career objectives, discuss your objectives for the job you’re applying to and how that will benefit the company as a whole, namely their bottom line.
For example, you could stress how you’ll increase their website click-through rate through social media campaigns, as you have done in the past for other businesses similar to theirs. Generally speaking, your ‘objective’ is your chance to succinctly say why you’re a great fit for the company and how your experience is relevant to the position.
Next, have a section on your resume that lists all of your relevant social media profiles, from Facebook and Twitter to LinkedIn and Google+, with the specific hyper-linked URL. This would also be the place to reference any blogs you contribute to, as long as they’re either pertinent to the industry you’ll be working in, or to highlight your stellar writing and social media skills.
Anyone can call themselves a “social media guru,” but can you back it up with facts? Even if you’ve never done social media as a “job,” you can make your experience with social media work to your advantage. For example, if a tweet you posted about a TV show got retweeted thousands of times, mention that.
Focus on social media-related work you’ve done, wherever possible, whether it is freelance or otherwise. For example, if you’ve blogged extensively about gardening for a company like Safer Brand, you can provide links to some of your articles and provide specific numbers on how many clicks these posts brought to the company’s website.
Your resume is also an opportunity to highlight other facets of your social media experience. Be specific regarding your experiences and be sure to stress the important factors that will make you stand out like if you’ve done PPC campaigns, have SEO experience, etc. These facts should be incorporated into the descriptions of each job or experience you’ve had.
Lastly, include a section for your skills. This is where you’d discuss your knowledge of such things as HTML, Flash, Tumblr, Blogspot, Dreamweaver, etc. While your educational background is important too — and should be included — skills and experience with things like this are especially pertinent if they’re required for the job you’re applying to.
No matter what job you’re applying to, you should write a cover letter tailored to that particular gig, but that’s not the only way to go beyond the resume when applying to social media-related gigs — particularly in the field of marketing, PR and creative services.
Social media itself lends itself to creativity; as such, think outside the box and find different ways to land that dream gig. Would a Vine video attract the attention of HR? Or perhaps a Pinterest board that highlights different social media campaigns you’ve worked on? Think outside the box — and the resume — when selling yourself on social media, and you’ll show just how much of an asset you truly are to the company.