7 Social Networks
The key to networking, of course, is to find people you can network with. Fortunately, for those of us who are terminally shy the Internet has made it possible to network from our computer keyboard and avoid those awkward mixers. There are many of online networking sites. All of the sites are based on the “six degrees of separation” principle which recognizes the actor Kevin Bacon as the center of humanity. Each site has slight variations on how you build and grow your network. The following are the leading sites for job hunters who want to e-network their way to success.
Linkedin.com From a head-hunter’s standpoint, LinkedIn has it all. From a job-hunter’s standpoint LinkedIn represents an opportunity of a lifetime to establish a powerful network of influential colleagues and friends Linkedin.com is my favorite. You can open a linked in account for free. It works by first requiring you to set up your on-line profile and then invite your friends to join your network. After people join they ask their friends and colleagues to join. For job-hunters this is a treasure trove of leads.
Classmates is the grand daddy of online community-based networking. Using Classmates is closer to traditional networking because it’s based on your alumni. At Classmates you can join a network of people you went to school with [high school, college or university] as well as military, industry or company alumni. The challenge with using it to source contacts is that you need to search by state. On the other hand if you want to reach out to people you went to school with to reconnect then Classmates is the way to go.
ExecuNet – If you’re in the 100k or more salary range then this networking venue is for you. ExecuNet was founded 18 years ago as the premier networking site on the internet. ExecuNet still holds that title. They make it easy for senior-level professionals to connect directly with business decision-makers, executive recruiters, and their peers. Not only do they have a web site full of information and advice YOU CAN NOT find anywhere else, they also host 5-STAR speakers and authors. Of course I’m biased because founder Dave Opton wrote the Foreword for Guerrilla Marketing for Job Hunters. It was either him or Trump and with Dave you’re more likely to hear “You’re Hired!”
Here are other online networking sites which all have unique benefits too numerous to mention here. You should choose at least two on-line networking sites and be as aggressive [staying within the rules of the site] and as creative with it as you can.
Ryze – is a classic. Easy to use and robust. It’s for connecting online and in person because it also has a real life networking component maybe even in your town. The best of both worlds really.
Spoke - great tool for connecting with the Fortune 1000 in particular and sales people of all types. Sales people by-the-way are great resources for job hunters – they’re naturally helpful and often talkative. They boast over 30 million people and 900,000 companies.
MySpace – the Groups Home page clusters people by interests. The site also has a career space.
Heartless Bitches – this site is just for the women. Seriously though. Need career advice and an opportunity to hobnob with some of the most intellectually stimulating and informed women on the planet ? Then this site is for you.
Your network will grow as quickly as you can recruit members who can then recruit other members. Your ability to e-Network your way to a new job grows exponentially as your network develops – a social pyramid scheme so-to-speak. For all the latest on social networking you should read what else? The Social Networking Web Log- which just happens to be loaded with tips on reaching inside the companies you want.
Social networking sites where designed to help people with common interests connect. However several sites like FaceBook MySpace Friendster Blogger Flickr and YouTube have become popular “adjunct referencing” tools for recruiters lately, so I’d check them all out and see if your potential employer is going to find anything embarrassing about you. If they do there’s a new service [thankfully] which deals with this called Naymz.
Quintessential Careers. Ok. Quintessential Careers isn’t a social network .. But it should be... At least for college grads. There’s an encyclopedia’s worth of advice here.