Social media is a platform that encompasses online communication channels that individuals use for interaction and collaboration. Moreover, it allows individuals to express their ideas by engaging in conversation with one another (Ellison, 2007). The networking websites that are popularly used include Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, Reddit and Wikipedia. The use of social media has grown rapidly, and people still wonder how it fits in their daily activities. Some people are active on a personal level; however, others have also realized that social media can be very useful on a professional level. Therefore, it is important to understand that, no matter your current level of using social media platform, it can be beneficial to you both personally and professionally.
Besides, social media allows individuals to create relationships and community channels. Regarding the personal life, the platform is a way to engage with families, friend and other people from various locations (Ellison, 2007). The social media platform allows people to use statuses, videos and pictures to share news about their lives. For people who live distant from one another, the platform plays a critical role in ensuring that the parties involved feel like they are close to each other. Social media has scrapped out the need for long-distance phone calls and plane tickets since the platform brings people together. Individuals derive best benefits of social networking by getting updated on new information around the world since most may not have the opportunity to do that. It is now possible to keep in touch with people through family groups and make the most of the leisure time by being connected with the fast moving world. The most commonly used social media platform for such scenario is Facebook. It has improved the social outreach but according to the various research, the use of social media has drastically reduced the social skills of most teens and adolescents. They have developed addiction due to the continuous use of social media hence affecting their sleep and level of functioning.
On the other hand, Individuals are required to show a work-safe image when it comes to the use of social platforms. The personal use of social media influences an individual’s professional life. Precisely, employers do not only take a professional skill set of a person as a requirement for employment, but they also consider the hobbies and passion of the potential employee. Social media has made people’s lives transparent. It has also become a culture for many companies to learn about the personal life of an individual before hiring him or her. Therefore, people should be careful by not posting inappropriate content on their social media accounts. It will allow the potential employers to admire their personality and interest and confirm them as best fit for the job.
Job seekers can also benefit through social media and especially through the use of LinkedIn, which is the world’s largest professional network. It is through such sites that hiring managers find candidates who can fit in their company’s culture. The LinkedIn allows a person to build his/her profile that makes him/her outstanding from the million people who use the site (Carson, 2014). If your social media image and biography is impressive, then the chances of you being hired are high. Your peers and employers will research about you and determine your fitness from the way you present yourself. It is significant to avoid the overused terms and use keywords that people can easily find you for the various business connections available (Roller, 2015). Moreover, when using Twitter, which is also an essential tool for networking, it is ideal if your Twitter profile is public and the information you tweet are interesting.
Similarly, the social media websites such as Google+, Instagram, Twitter and Facebook has been used as channels to expand businesses. Individuals are encouraged to use the various social media channels to expand their businesses since they offer diverse options to share information, and they have different categories of users. When using Facebook, you can share your information through messages, status updates, videos and photos (Roller, 2015). The most important thing about Facebook is interaction. If people post questions or opinions on your fan page, it is important to respond. The more you involve yourself in interaction by responding to the questions posted on your page, the more likely people will talk about your business outside. Moreover, the more useful information you give to your supporters the more they will want to engage with you.
Twitter provides the same importance as Facebook; however, it gives a person a chance to use hashtag to find like-minded people (Carson, 2014). For example, if you are tweeting about Crips selling, you can hashtag your tweet as #Crips selling and it will be put in any searches that have ‘Crips selling’ Hashtags helps other people know you and also you can discover people who discuss the same topic. On a further note, Instagram plays the same role as other social media channels. The only difference is that it is more important to retail business owners since they can use the platform to show off their new arrivals.
In conclusion, the use of social media can benefit both your personal and professional needs provided you manage and balance them appropriately. However, we have numerous options to choose when using the social media platform and it is important to find what works best for us. It is hard to determine the right and wrong way to use the sites since each and everyone has different taste and preferences. However, it is important to keep in mind that the people we are connected with may sometimes feel different. Ultimately, it is important to note that the personal and professional social sites accounts are not isolated. A person who is connected to you via a professional account can still reach your personal site. For one to balance between professionalism and authenticity, it is advisable to develop multiple social media accounts and each should reflect the persona you wish. Before you post information, you should consider your personal branding and ensure that anything you share is appropriate for your bosses, coworkers, and friends and family to view.
Carson, P. L. (2014, March 10). Why social media is important for your personal and professional life. Retrieved from https://blog.udemy.com/why-social-media-is-important/
Ellison, N. B. (2007). Social network sites: Definition, history, and scholarship. Journal of Computer‐Mediated Communication, 13(1), 210-230.
Roller, C. (2015, July 5). Personal vs. professional social media. Retrieved from http://socialmediacertificate.net/2015/07/personal-vs-professional-social-media/
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