Basics of Twitter for Social Recruiting

In general, Social Recruiting is usually tied down to Facebook and LinkedIn. Yes, a few of us are aware about Twitter but we fail to find out the best way to use this micro-blogging site for recruitment. I always come across many recruiters who are not sure of  the ‘Why & How’ of using this 140 character tool. Normally recruiters hear that Twitter is a great tool without having any idea how to use it.

Twitter does not have a ready-made profile database like LinkedIn or provide a marketing interface like Facebook. Twitter is more of an engagement and sharing tool, which also helps users discover new connections in their areas of interest. I have tried putting together an easy five step process which will help you use Twitter to engage candidates.

Step 1: Make yourself “Twitter-able”

Twitter is structured around  ‘following people’ and having  ‘followers’. Unlike Facebook or LinkedIn, it does not offer a two-way connection with just one click. You can choose to ‘follow’ someone and get their updates on your Twitter Timeline. However, the person you’re following can either choose to follow you back or ignore you.

It is vital that you dress-up your profile in order to get attention. I’ve seen enough people with ‘egg-on-their-face’, with no or very little information on their Twitter bio and who tweet irrelevant messages once in a while. Please make sure that you create a decent first impression.

Step 2: Search and Build your contacts

Once you sign up, you can import your email and other social contacts to Twitter and connect with them. It is important that you find relevant people in your industry / domain / technology through tools such as followerwonk.com or by using search.twitter.com.

You will definitely learn about the ‘Who’s Who’ on Twitter from various areas of life. If you come across anyone you know, wait and say “Hi”. Twitter is all about conversations which turn into engagements in social life.

Step:3 Sharing and Engagement

You can use Twitter for your personal use and/or for a professional purpose. You have to be concise enough to put across your thoughts or information in 140 characters. You can start sharing relevant topics, thoughts, ideas, news, reports etc. pertaining to your areas of expertise / domain / technology. These tweets can go viral, getting you attention from prospective candidates within the same circles who are also active on Twitter.

Once you are introduced to new people, start meaningful conversations with them. This will lead to more introductions and interactions and connect you to a bigger talent pool. Remember not to be too narrow-sighted; the interactions you have are not just for industry conversations. Don’t be robotic, be human!

Step:4 Add your candidates

Have you noticed that LinkedIn has integrated Twitter accounts? This gives you an easy way to reach your target candidates. Additionally, you can see if candidates whom you speak to on a daily basis can be added to Twitter. This way, you can still keep in touch with them even if they are not selected.

You can keep candidates on your radar, monitor what they’re tweeting about and engage them in various discussions. This will earn you retweets (aka leads) from their networks, thereby increasing your reach. So keep the conversations going…

Step:5 Expand your reach 

Twitter has some great features such as the #(hashtag) and the RT (Retweet) which can help you discover new contacts / connections. When tweeting about jobs, using hashtags will expand your search efforts. For instance, you can use the hashtags #jobs #job #<technology> etc. to connect with people who are looking for jobs by using those same hashtags.

Additionally, keep an eye on Retweets from your network – a retweet provides an insight to people you are not yet connected with, and whom you can start following and further engage.

You can also connect your Twitter account to your Facebook and LinkedIn accounts. However, make sure that you filter your tweets to other networks.

Twitter is not designed for recruiters nor is it a straight-forward recruitment / sourcing tool. You need to be diligent enough to use this network to engage and discover new connections within your areas of interest. It requires continuous involvement and persistent effort.

Once you build your network, Twitter is a great tool to broadcast jobs and get introduced to leads through proactive engagement. It is a necessary part of your social recruiting strategy. Don’t expect candidates to find you, instead you go get them! Be proactive.

Featured Image by shawncampbell

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