Joining the website, i.e. Twitter, Google + and LinkedIn etc.. isn’t the hard part. The hard part is figuring out what to do once you’re on it.
I am not ashamed to say it’s taken me a little over two years to grasp Twitter, LinkedIn still being a work in progress. It’s a little terrifying to put yourself out on the Internet, especially on a platform where future employers are watching.
It used to take me hours to construct the perfect tweet, that I would then not send because I was too afraid that something would be wrong or someone might not understand the joke I had attempted to make. It was endless, I was a year in and had only sent 100 tweets.
After awhile, and some pushing from professors I started caring less about how frequently I was putting out content, and more about the quality of the content.
One of the most important things to find is your niche. What do you like to do? What are you good at? I just realized mine is Dating/Career (topic wise). It may seem like these two don’t go together, but they have more in common then you would think.
The next stop is to start connecting with people who are bigwigs in your area(s) of expertise (or at least the areas you want to be a leader in). You can do this by googling who is influential. For me it would be googling top 100 influential career blogs, and then finding the founders on LinkedIn and BeKnown.
Once you find the people you want to connect with it is important to send a personal message about why you would like to network with them. Keep it short and sweet: ” Hi, my name is Courtney and I’m interested in learning about career coaching. I would love to chat about how you got into the business if you have any free time.” Short and to the point, a lot of professionals aren’t going to have time to read some long-winded message about how much you idolize them. And please don’t feel offended if you don’t get a response back, just move on to the next one.
The point of networks like BeKnown, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google + is to magnify ones ability to network. So instead of sticking with your inner circle, why not take a leap out of it and find people who will help you get ahead? Just a suggestion.