5 Online Networking Tips To Make Recruiters Notice You

We’ve all heard the saying “It’s all about who you know”. In today’s competitive job market, that holds true more than ever. Even if you’re a great candidate, there’s a chance that your resume will get overlooked in the overflow of candidates applying through traditional means – so it’s time to try something different. Instead of sending your resume into a black hole and waiting to hear back, use online networking tips to find new opportunities.

For most, “networking” conjures images of making awkward small talk and exchanging business cards at work functions to get to know others within the industry. But it doesn’t have to be that way – networking is just about establishing a relationship. And with the increased use of social media in the professional world, networking has become easier than ever. With the click of a button, LinkedIn, Twitter, and even Facebook can become a goldmine of networking possibilities – and job opportunities.

The key to developing your network is to start now, not when you suddenly find yourself looking for work. Not sure where to start? Try some of these online networking tips:

1. Make sure others can find you

Include enough information in your profiles to tell your connections what they want to know – most importantly, who you are, what you do, and what you’re looking for. On LinkedIn, include each relevant job and a small description of your main responsibilities, your education, and some of your preferences and interests. Other sites, like Twitter, offer much less space, so highlight the obvious – what you’re looking to accomplish, your chosen field, and an interest or two.

2. Make connections – and start with the basics

Have a family friend, aunt, or even a third cousin that works in an industry you’re interested in? Connect with them. If they can in any way speak to characteristics about you that would be useful to an employer, or possibly put you in touch with a future employer, they’re worth connecting with. LinkedIn has unfortunately made it increasingly difficult to connect with individuals outside of your network without springing for a Premium account, but by using who you already know as a base, you may be able to swing some introductions. Look for individuals with a common interest to start, like current and past colleagues, individuals who you’ve met at industry events, and individuals who share your alma mater and background.

3. Join groups and follow topics relevant to your industry, position, and employer

Groups on LinkedIn are a great way to find new connections while developing your professional skills. Search for groups related to topics in your industry or surrounding topics you’d like to learn more about, and follow employers you’d like to keep in touch with. Alumni groups are also a great way to expand your network, so don’t forget to join those as well!

4. Start and contribute to conversations

It’s not enough to just be a member of a group, or follow a company – you need to engage the audience to get noticed. Comment on topics you’re interested in, “like” new ideas from other members, and offer your expertise to the group. Keep an eye on the conversations and make sure to respond to anyone who offers thoughts on your comments.

5. Make it personal

When you reach out to a new contact, make it personal. Comment on something you have in common, a particular thought from the person you found interesting, or a shared connection. The conversation should be focused around information sharing, not an end goal. A message that says “I’d like to work for your company” isn’t networking – but one that says “I’d love to hear more about your thoughts on [x]” is. 

6. Always respond, even if you’re not interested

Direct messages on any social media site can get annoying, so just have a quick response ready for the messages you’re not interested in. You may not be interested in a product or a role now, but a quick “no thanks” now can save you from a missed opportunity down the road from a rude reply (or no reply at all).



Remember, though, that networking is a two way street. It’s about building a relationship – not asking for a favor and ending communication. To truly build a network that will be of use when you’re looking for a job, you’ll need to maintain it. Devoting just 5-10 minutes to your network each day to contribute, reconnect, and share could cut weeks off of your job search. So what are you waiting for? Get out there, and start networking!


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