While it has been close to two years since I opened a Twitter account, it has been about a year since I have been active on Twitter. I love Twitter! It is the fastest, most effective way I have found to browse information that interests me and connect with other professionals. Twitter has been an instrumental resource in elevating my passion and understanding of my profession to a whole new level. Thank you Twitter!
I must say, however, that one of the most difficult things for me to grasp about Twitter was the #hashtag. Trying to figure out what #FF means is a day I will not forget. I was so confused, but once I learned the concept and how to effectively use hashtags, I was off to the races. In my work, I have found two major areas in which hashtags have helped the most.
(1) Network and learn what is happening in your profession: Along with dozens of other attendees of the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) National Conference last week, I tweeted what I learned from speakers and colleagues throughout the event using the #NACE11 hashtag. Twitter and the hashtag brought the conference to those who could not attend the event, and I found great use in the hashtag search in learning what others were hearing. This hashtag alone strengthened my connection with fellow Tweeters and those not attending. My grade for the #NACE11 hashtag is an A+!
(2) Join others in chats on the jobsearch: Some of the best trending hashtags for job seekers include: #career, #jobsearch, #jobseeker, #resume, #coverletters and the list goes on and on. However, you can also find the best job search discussions with hashtags for professional chats. Some of my favorite chats to follow include: #internchat, #tchat, #hfchat and #careerchat.
Using hashtags to get connected to conversations and information also helps you identify key people and organizations to follow. Professional activity with Twitter and the use of hashtags can have a positive domino effect in your professional development and increase your business network. Try it—you’ll like it. Trust me!