The last two decades have brought with them the internet bubble and ushered in the golden era of social media. These days, social media seems to have taken over everything, from advertising to news and even new product releases. Schools and employers are increasingly turning to social media to know more about potential students and employees in a bid to stay ahead of the curve.
When applied correctly, social media can be a powerful tool that can grow your person or brand, and make you stand out from the crowd. However, most people are only recently discovering the influence that social media wields in influencing some of the decisions that colleges and companies make in hiring.
Here’s 10 tips and tricks to help you win on both social media and your applications;
- BE AN INFLUENCER
You might wonder what the term ‘influencer’ means. In a nutshell, if you have a large following and people listen to your opinion. If you have 50,000 followers on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook, you can use these numbers to your benefit. Teens are making major money from social media platforms, and brands love working with such people. You can be paid good money to promote a brand and can do all this while you’re still studying as a student. PPCs, i.e., Pay per Clicks on an Instagram page, for example, can earn you a lot of money.
It’s easy to be swayed by all the vitriol and hate on social media, so you need to steer clear of any negativity that might hurt your brand. Remember, your page is a reflection of you and companies will judge you by their first impressions of you on your social media platforms.
- AVOID COMMENTARY ON CONTROVERSIAL MATTERS
Commentary doesn’t necessarily imply fiery issues only. You can still add your voice to the conversation, only be careful to lay all your cards correctly. The bare truth is that there is an ugly side of social media that most people know about. Politics can get very personal, and it is not a secret that tweets and Facebook posts have gotten lots of people in trouble. Be careful not to get carried away with the waves of emotion that are characteristic of social media debates.
- PROMOTE A TALENT OR YOUR STARTUP
Students are nowadays starting businesses in their dorm rooms (remember?) and promoting them through their pages. If you don’t have the big advertising budgets of Fortune 500 companies, don’t worry. Use your social media pages to promote and monetize your talents. It might start slow, but with time and likes, you will have created a buzz for yourself and might even start gaining traction in your career. There are artists who have made a name who have completely made a name for themselves simply by being visible and vibrant on social media. You can do your writing on a platform such as Medium or WordPress and share these on social media.
The beauty of being consistent with talent on social media is that your fans always grow with you too. Facebook provides a number of analytical tools that you can use to check your growth. Putting these achievements on your application will make you seem like a go-getter, and an admission’s officer chancing on your page will surely develop a liking for you.
- SHARING INFORMATIVE CONTENT
Social media is a great way to share information and educate others. If you are always on the internet and love news, current affairs and other pieces of information on current developments. Most web applications now provide share tools for different social media tools. Choose the information that you share carefully as you are building a brand and it’s quite easy to mess it all up and turn off an admission officer.
- FOLLOW YOUR COLLEGE ON ITS PAGES
Schools usually have their own social media handles and following them can be both a strategic and useful move. Interacting with your future schools might get you noticed and might get you new insights on what kind of school you’ll be attending. Those awkward questions that might come up when you are meeting with an admissions officer might be put to rest if you have some initial interaction with the school on social media.
- MAKE YOUR INFORMATION CONSISTENT
You have different names, faces, and personalities on your various platforms, which is quite fine. However, having contradictory information your pages gives the impression of someone who isn’t straightforward. Try to maintain consistency and see it work for you. Trust us, schools and employers do thorough research on applicants because they can’t risk missing a thing.
- YOUR PROFILE PICTURE MATTERS
While most folks tend to be liberal with this one it really does matter. Your ‘avatar’ is the very first online impression of you. Sounds cliché, you know, don’t judge a book by its cover, but it really does matter. There are tons of things we think could go wrong with this one, and just one picture may cost you that admission.
- CAREFUL WHO YOU FOLLOW, RETWEET OR WHO TAGS YOU
Retweets are not endorsements, right? Maybe, but they do matter. You need to be careful about what you post on your timeline because doing it enough times might get you labeled. Your timeline is literally your story, watch how you write it. Just scrolling down through someone’s timeline will give you a glimpse of their thoughts and personality.
- SHOWCASE OTHER INTERESTS
If you have other hobbies and interests, find pages that promote these and follow them. Join their discussions and find yourself being in the epicenter of the conversation.
- BUILD A NETWORK
Your social connections and networks, especially on sites like Linked In show on your page. Build these networks especially with positive influencers and build your mentions. Birds of a feather flock together, they say. Flock with eagles and get noticed. Your admissions officer may be thoroughly impressed with your connections.