Social media provides you the opportunity to participate in constructive and intriguing conversation, but it can also be your downfall. Both in person and online, your comments and dialogue are part of your personal brand. Within seconds you can damage your reputation simply by posting an ill-prepared or off-hand comment.
Jobvite’s 2014 Social Recruiting Survey revealed that 55% of recruiters have reconsidered candidates based on their social media profiles. Of those instances, 61% resulted in a negative reconsideration of the candidate.
When making comments on any platform, be thoughtful in what you have to say, and how you deliver that message. You may disagree profusely with someone’s comment, but if you portray a negative or contradictory message, you could hurt your reputation.
Make careful choices with your words to deliver your opinion in the proper context. For example, if someone posts a negative comment or something I disagree with, I might write, “My professional opinion as an authority in executive management is …”
You can see that I don’t overtly criticize or judge the other person’s opinion or get into an argument. Of course you should never use profanity or anything less than professional language. It’s okay to sometimes be on the edge, but don’t tumble over it.
You not only want to be agreeable in your comments, you want to entice engagement. You can capture a reader’s attention by asking thought-provoking and engaging questions that advance the conversation.
Something as simple as adding, “Your thoughts?” to the end of a post can stimulate a conversation, potentially exploding it into a dialogue between many people – each of them with their own networks that are now mingling and discovering each other and you. That is the power of social media.
Writing, reading and responding to social media comments can be very time consuming.
There are only 24 hours in a day, so manage your time accordingly. If you are in career transition, networking should be how you spend the majority of your time.
Make the most of each platform’s unique culture and audience activity, to maximize your exposure. Many experts have chimed in on the “perfect” time to post to LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and Google+, from simple charts to more in-depth science. Ultimately you need to test and analyze what works best for your unique audience.
In essence, posting comments is a major component of your personal brand – don’t damage it.
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