This is a guest post by Cherralle Alexander of My Daily Cake blog. See more information about the Author after the post.

Companies are relying more heavily on social networking sites to recruit talent. Recruiters are checking social media profiles to gain more knowledge and insight about a candidate and they are using this to make hiring decisions.

Although you may consider this your private life, this is in the public domain and it will be considered in the recruiting process.

You can use this in your favour by keeping a ‘clean’ profile online and showcasing your skills and talent.

However, any questionable activity on social media can negatively impact your chances of even getting so far as landing the interview. Here are 4 tips to maintain your brand on social media.

How to maintain your brand on social media

1. Avoid posting pictures which are considered racy

Do not post any pictures on your social media profile that you would not want a future or current employer to see. The reality is that pictures which are too ‘controversial or racy’ can be off-putting for recruiters. Maintain a ‘clean’ profile.

2. Did you tweet that?

Rather keep any controversial opinions that you have to yourself or position them in a constructive way.

Sharing content that is provocative in your industry is one thing and may be considered thought leadership, however avoid topics that are divisive (politics, religion, etc.), can be potentially offensive to someone accessing your profile, keeping in mind that 70% of employers have advised that they have not hired someone based on what they found online.

3. Avoid any form of negative commentary

Steer clear of making any negative comments about your boss or colleagues as this will come back to haunt you. These types of comments will depict you as someone who does not address issues constructively but who would rather share them online.

In general avoid complaining online,  as you will come across as someone reactive in dealing with issues.

4. Do use social media to show your knowledge and skills

Social media is an excellent way to showcase your personal and professional interests and to reflect your well-rounded personality. This will complement your CV, and shows some of your personality to a potential employer.

Over and above this, networking sites such as LinkedIn is an excellent way to join professional communities where you can connect with others in your industry to share and gather insights.

Lastly, add value to the communities you are a part of. Your competence, skills and personality can shine through on social media if you use it to positively.

Do you have any unique ways you use social media to enhance your career?

Cheralle is a wife and mom of two, living and working in Johannesburg. She works full time and she enjoys the fulfillment it brings to her life. Visit her blog at My Daily Cake, where she mainly covers parenting and career topics for women. Do not forget to also connect with her on Instagram and Twitter.

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