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It’s no secret that recruiters are under pressure to bring the best candidates to the right companies.

Many users search on Google, Linkedin, and other social media sites to find the best talent. 

So, if you would like to be one of these ‘head-hunted’ individuals companies are desperate to hire, read on and find out how SEO could be affecting your career prospects.

1. Building Your Social Media Reputation

If you have a publically listed social media profile, bear in mind that it can be spotted by anyone. Your dream boss could see it and choose to offer you a high-profile job role or pass you by.

Make sure you ‘scrub up’ your past posting history by investing in a social media audit. You can conduct these checks online, and receive a list of ‘risque’ posts you can choose to keep or delete.

Look to all of your existing accounts and find ways to optimize your profile to tie in with your life ambitions. Just like the old saying goes,

‘Dress for the job you want, not the job you have.’

Make sure your LinkedIn and other networks ‘look the part’:

  • Update your profile information and optimize it for a recruiter’s eyes
  • Change your profile picture to a professional-looking image
  • Add connections associated with your dream position
  • Regularly contribute stories and comments to get noticed

Each social network will have it’s own best practices for optimizing profiles to attract the right following. However, your LinkedIn profile is the most crucial.

Message your existing contacts and get them to send you endorsements for your career skills. If you have any past managers or bosses in your network, approach them for a positive testimonial. Word of mouth referrals has a powerful influence on people.

Within the space of 24 hours of posting, you could potentially have these comments seen by thousands of LinkedIn users. Perhaps your skills are just the talents these connections need?

2. Making the Most of Google Search

Everyone has searched their name in Google and ranked each of the results on a scale of ‘one’ to ‘cringe’ on the embarrassing meter. There may be some results you can get removed or delete yourself. However, in the cases where that is not possible, you will have to do your best to push them down to decrease their impact.

Replace them with high-quality content instead.

3. Your Blog Should Act as Your ‘Shop Window’ Online 

If you haven’t done already, you will need to set up a personal website including a blog and portfolio of your best work.

You can use a subscription-based web builder with a basic, customizable template. Don’t worry if you have no design experience, you can get up-and-running fast.

If you have some cash to invest, hire a designer to make a logo, and a copywriter to help you write a stunning pitch.

Concentrate on setting up your About page to emphasize your best skills and career attributes. Aim to include around 800 words. Go into great detail about how you got to where you are today, your future ambitions, and the motivations that drive you.

When it comes to your portfolio section, aim to include around ten pieces, across a range of styles and disciplines. If you are a tad short on content, approach your friends and contacts to see if you can get some pro bono work.

Alternatively, create some pieces ‘on spec.‘  If you decide to offer out your skills for free, get testimonials and words of praise for your website.

"Blog" Spelled Out

4. Helping Others Can Bring You Great Rewards

Use keyword research planners to help you find the terms a recruiter or client would use to find a professional like you. Include these long-tail search queries into your homepage text and page titles. You can also use a keyword search to help you identify questions your clients and possible recruiters might ask you if you were invited to attend a meeting.

For example, if you are a web developer that has solved a particularly tricky problem with a site’s UX, write a blog post about it.  Anybody who is searching for that particular term could find your post and approach you in the future with an opportunity.

Take the time to seek out career-related forums and contribute useful answers to the queries people leave. Do your best to engage and start threads on the sites that draw the most interaction.

High authority forums carry some SEO clout. So, make sure you research and craft multi-paragraph responses. If you post a link to a related blog from your site, you can also draw in page views and boost your site’s traffic.

5. Regularly Updated Content Will Set You Apart

Developing a blogging content strategy will help bring in business and build your online influence. Follow thought leaders in your industry and search for inspiration on blog topics to cover within your posts.

Could you offer an intelligent response to an article, in writing? Can you uncover a different angle on the same subject matter?

You can batch-write a list of blog posts and schedule them to publish installments. Or, you can keep track of what’s going on in your industry and create content that could fit into the news cycle. The secret to getting blogging right is writing regularly, sharing across networks, and building backlinks from other trusted sites.

Find fellow bloggers and publications in your area and contribute guest blog posts in the hopes that you can attract a larger online following. Building a guest blogging relationship takes time and patience. Start by following the publication and getting a feel for their style, before sending off your article pitch.

If you want to use guest blogging as a career opportunity, get in the mind of an industry recruitment specialist and write a blog post about hiring talented people who work in your profession.

There is the chance a recruiter might read and share it on their broader network. Even the number of likes and reposts will count towards your name becoming known in the right circles.

In a world becoming increasingly reliant on an internet search, building a name and presenting yourself as the ideal candidate can land you your dream job role.

Pay careful attention to your brand and social media reputation and do your best to build strong bonds with your networks. Build up an online hub to showcase your work and employ SEO tactics to attract the right kinds of opportunities for your career.

Written By
Victoria Greene is a freelance writer and branding consultant who runs a blog called Victoriaecommerce. Here she shares tips with freelancers and startup owners looking for their next big opportunity.

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