If you’re reading this, you’re likely viewing it on a Web page or in an email newsletter. And you’re probably looking for a new job, right?
Good. You’ll likely benefit from the following two ways to use the Internet to get hired faster …
1) Try LinkedIn
LinkedIn (www.linkedin.com) is one of my favorite job search and research Web sites. It’s free to join and you can make a huge number of networking contacts using it.
Once you join LinkedIn, type in the names of the 10 companies you would like to work for and see if any of your contacts work there or know people there (or know people who know people there!). Then email or call them to ask for referrals.
Also, search for people with interests, educations and experience that are similar to yours. What do they do? Where do they work? This will give you an idea of who is hiring people like you.
Finally, download the LinkedIn JobsInsider (www.linkedin.com/static?key=jobsinsider_download) if you’re searching on sites like Monster, or Zip Recruiter. The JobsInsider toolbar shows people in your LinkedIn network you can contact at a hiring company — it’s a great way to cut through the clutter and get noticed at larger employers.
Here are two more excellent ways to use LinkedIn, according to Liz Ryan, CEO and founder of WorldWIT (www.worldwit.org).
First, use LinkedIn to find headhunters. “They are well-connected and, like real estate agents, seldom shun a phone call from out of the blue, although it may take them a while to call you back,” says Ryan.
Even if headhunters are not able to help you find a job right away, they can still be a rich source of advice.
“In 10 minutes on the phone with a headhunter, you can learn enough to target some companies, drop others from your list entirely, and save yourself hours or weeks of trouble,” advises Ryan.
Second, use LinkedIn to expand the network of people you already know, and let them know that you are job hunting.
“Get back in touch with friends of your parents, your friends’ parents and older siblings, the lady you babysat for in high school, anyone you interned for during college, the McKinsey VP who sang in choir at church all those years with your mom — get it? Then enroll them in supporting your job search,” says Ryan.
2) Write a Blog
If you build a blog, will recruiters and employers come calling with job offers?
Possibly, according to executive recruiter Harry Joiner, who writes an influential blog of his own at www.marketingheadhunter.com.
(A blog, short for “weblog,” is simply a Web-based journal where you can post comments on any topic you choose.)
“Blogs are most useful in establishing your credibility among self-referencing networks of people, like trade associations, for example. Those networks can lead to job opportunities,” says Joiner.
Every good blog needs a clear editorial focus. Who is your target reader? What do they like? What do they fear? What are their top three daily frustrations? These are questions you must answer before creating a blog.
Important: How will your blog help readers in their daily struggle? There must be a concrete takeaway from every posting you write, and a great way to stay focused is to think of your blog as a cookie jar, according to Joiner.
“All that busy readers want is a tasty diversion that is also nutritious. Tell them something they didn’t already know. Or give them a new way to apply something they do know. And remember that there are about 9 million blogs online, so don’t expect people to read yours just because it’s free,” says Joiner.
While you can’t expect job offers to pour in overnight, writing a blog can be an effective way to promote yourself and your career over the long haul. Because the more visible you are in your industry, the less you have to look for opportunities — they will tend to find you.
Now, go out and make your own luck!
Kevin Donlin is President of Guaranteed Resumes. Since 1996, he and his team have provided resumes, cover letters and job search help to clients in all 50 states. Author of “51 Ways to Find a Job Fast — Guaranteed,” Kevin has been interviewed by USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, CBS Radio and many others. As a reader of this publication, you can get a Free Job Search Kit ($25.00 value) at the Guaranteed Resumes Web site — www.gresumes.com