Social media has opened up a whole new world of information for digital marketing recruiters and employers to see “beyond the resume” into candidates’ personalities, creativity, networks and digital literacy.
This insight is especially helpful for evaluating marketers, for whom social media has become a staple tool. From Twitter to LinkedIn, checking someone’s social accounts is not a replacement for proper vetting and evaluation, but it can give you some useful insights that are difficult to get otherwise. Here are just a few ways you can use a candidate’s social media presence to determine if they’d be a good fit for your organization.
The ability to understand and use social networks is a key skill for marketers at every level, and their social presence reflects their competency.
It’s hard to imagine a comprehensive modern marketing strategy that doesn’t involve social in some way. It’s something all marketers need to consider and take advantage of, even in seemingly unrelated fields like direct mail or analytics. And of course social needs to be constantly top-of-mind for anyone involved in digital marketing strategy and execution.
The ability to understand and use social networks is a key skill for marketers at every level, and their social presence reflects their competency. For instance, a candidate who accurately tags photos, makes clever use of hashtags and consistently engages their network displays a great control and understanding of how to make the most of social capabilities. On the other hand, someone with incomplete profiles, poorly formatted posts and low activity probably wouldn’t know how to effectively leverage social media in marketing.
How They’ll Represent Their Brand
A brand is largely defined by its employees. When you encounter a rude waiter, an extremely friendly cashier, or frustrating customer service representatives, your experience is associated with their employer. That association exists out of work, too. Your social media marketers’ interactions online, professional or otherwise, reflect back on to you, and that’s something every digital marketing recruiter has to keep in mind when searching for candidates.
Knowing that, it’s important to hire people who will be good stewards of your brand anywhere their voice can be heard publicly, including on social media.
It’s one thing to have strong opinions and voice them on social media, even if they involve touchy subjects like politics. After all, the purpose of most social networks is to provide people with a way to express themselves; especially on personal accounts intended for interaction with friends and family.
What someone says online reflects upon themselves, and that reflects on who employs them.
But some people use social media as an outlet to be vulgar, immature, offensive,or threatening with their posts and pictures, which is usually unacceptable in almost any public situation. What someone says online reflects upon themselves, and that reflects on who employs them.
How Well They Protect Information
Social networks have made us more connected, and that comes with some risks. It’s never been easier for someone to use publicly available information to make you a victim of a crime like identity theft or burglary. Anyone with digital awareness and a sense of risk management knows to be very careful with the information they make widely available online, both through being selective with the information they share and modifying their account settings to conceal it from strangers.
Cyber security is a huge issue for individuals and companies alike, especially considering all the sensitive data involved with digital marketing. But even in today’s day and age many people fail to take even basic precautions to conceal important information on their social accounts.
And if someone isn’t a good guardian of their own personal information, they may be less responsible with your security, too.
Use Caution when Browsing Candidates’ Social Accounts
Social media recruiting can give you unique insights and information you wouldn’t get otherwise, but it comes with a couple of risks.
- The first of these is legal: looking at someone’s personal information may make you aware of their “protected traits,” characteristics that are protected from hiring discrimination such as age, gender and race. You may not lawfully make any employment decisions based on this information, and could be liable for a lawsuit if you are suspected of doing so.
- The second is more practical: you risk overlooking a good candidate based on a relatively minor aspect of their social presence. Without knowing more about the individual, it’s easy to take something out of context, especially from interactions they’d typically consider private. Don’t dismiss someone just because a few facets of their social history bother you a little.