Social media accounts are the new “first impression”. Many employers conduct online
searches to screen potential candidates, so it’s more important than ever to ensure your accounts are
sending the right message about your personal brand.
Social media is highly utilized in today’s society, especially to learn about potential candidates or to get a
better sense of someone’s unique personal brand. There are three big mistakes people make when it
comes to social media, and all of them will send the wrong message to employers.
1. Lack of Photos
First things first, you should always have a profile photo on your accounts. Having an image of
YOURSELF, not a random object or generic logo, is the first step towards creating a winning
profile. While this may seem insignificant, it’s important that viewers are able to quickly put a
face to the name. Additionally, the absence of a profile photo is usually a warning sign for fake
or dangerous accounts. You don’t want employers left wondering, but rather knowing they’ve
found the right person.
Another thing to keep in mind is the amount of photos on your account. Searchers want to see
you using social media, especially within the last few months, to help them assess who you are
as a person. If you haven’t posted in a while, but are constantly liking photos, then it can appear
as though you’re hiding your personal life, even if you aren’t.
2. Inappropriate Content
Posting inappropriate content will absolutely impact your personal brand, and not in a good
way. The smallest “hint of offense” can easily send the wrong message for a first time viewer.
Similarly, one bad apple spoils the bunch. Even if your social media account is filled with great
content, a single negative or degrading post can put your personal brand in jeopardy.
3. A Non-Existent or Poorly Written Bio
Each account calls this section something different, but essentially your bio is the “about”
portion of your profile. If you were on Instagram, then it would be the top section surrounding
your icon photo. Since it’s the first thing people see and read, use it as an written elevator
speech. Your profile should highlight personal things of importance, previous achievements and
any organizations or affiliations. Depending on your industry, it’s a great way to market your
creativity or out-of-the-box thinking.
Now that you know how to create a winning social media profile, spend a few minutes updating your
own. Remember, your personal brand starts on the computer screen. It’s just as important to update
your social media profiles, similar to how you would your resume.