If you’re a job seeker, you’re likely using LinkedIn to help you find your next position, but are you using it to its full capacity? Find Your Dream Job guest Orlando Haynes says visibility creates opportunity, so the more eyes you get your content in front of, the more connections you can make. Orlando suggests experimenting with text, audio, and video to gain attention. But don’t just share anything; share value. A great way to start is by taking an article written by someone else, adding your well-thought-out comments to it, and sharing that to get comfortable creating content for the platform.
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Find Your Dream Job, Episode 392:
How Content Creation Helps Your Job Search (and How to Do It), with Orlando Haynes
Airdate: March 29, 2023.
This is Find Your Dream Job, the podcast that helps you get hired, have the career you want, and make a difference in life.
I’m your host, Mac Prichard. I’m also the founder of Mac’s List. It’s a job board in the Pacific Northwest that helps you find a fulfilling career.
Every Wednesday, I talk to a different expert about the tools you need to get the work you want.
Find Your Dream Job is brought to you by TopResume. TopResume has helped more than 400,000 professionals land more interviews and get hired faster.
Get a free review of your resume today.
Go to macslist.org/topresume.
Writing articles for LinkedIn and other sites is one of the best ways to get the attention of employers.
But do you get writer’s block when you try to do this?
Orlando Haynes is here to talk about how content creation helps your job search and how to do it.
He joins us from Tampa, Florida.
Well, let’s get right into it, Orlando. What do you mean when you’re talking about content creation?
Yeah, great question. So, when you utilize the platform LinkedIn, it’s best that for job seekers; this is a time where we need to stand out. We’re in this digital space, so it’s definitely a time for you to stand out and leverage that platform. It’s a global platform, and so there’s multiple uses around content creation.
We can go through those steps from a newsletter, long form, short form text, audio, visual, creation. So, if you find a sweet spot where you’re comfortable in leveraging that platform, you can start to separate yourself as a job seeker.
Well, I want to go through each of those tactics individually. Before we get there, what would you say to someone who’s wondering how content creation is going to help with their job search? What kind of difference can it make?
Yeah, absolutely. The more eyeballs you get sent to your profile, the more opportunity it creates. I like to call it the VCO method. Visibility creates opportunity. So, in this sea of talent that we have that came through the Great Resignation, tons of layoffs that are happening, so you have a bigger pool of talent for employers to look through. But now, it’s time for you to separate.
So, really comes around personal branding. How do you do that? How do you separate yourself, other than just post and pray and hope they give you a call? And resting on your talents and just maybe your accolades. You have to do a little bit more to get noticed, and that’s where it comes to leveraging the platform.
Again, my go-to thing is more of the video content. But writing articles and things like that would definitely begin to separate you and kind of brand you in your space as a thought leader, and as, again, there’s more strategies around tagging certain companies, commenting on posts that they’ve done, the companies you want to partner with. So that they start to see you, consistently showing up, and then eyeballs are now turned to your profile to kind of see your history of work.
Tell us more about that, Orlando. What happens when an employer, particularly at a company that, perhaps, you’ve targeted in your search, reads your content?
Yeah, absolutely. So, with that, again, it’s the consistency that’s huge for content creation for job seekers. I had a great conversation with Sarah Johnson, and we talked about this exact topic a bit, and she did kind of share also there’s a balance. So, we’re not saying for job seekers to become full-time content creators on the platform. But what we’re saying is be strategic in staying in your lane and kind of in your zone of genius.
So, if you’re an engineer, speak to engineering things. If you’re a marketer, speak to marketing things. And then, so, when you comment, post, share an article from someone else, you’re sharing your thought leadership ideas. And again, that traction starts to build up. People will start to see, your personal brand will start to build, your network will start to grow, and it’s not so much about who you’re initially connected to.
So, if you’re familiar with the LinkedIn platform, the second and third connections, so, this third-level layer is two-level layers that can see what you’re doing and kind of say, hey, he or she may be a good fit for an opportunity on our HR management team because they have a strong background in management. But they’re sharing expert advice, their insight. And those are the things that kind of separate job seekers today.
So, you want to make sure that you’re consistent in doing that. But be strategic in keeping it, again, in your zone of genius.
In your experience, how much time does it take a job seeker in a typical week to create the kind of content that’s going to make a difference?
You know what, I think that’s kind of the elephant in the room, where they feel they need to constantly post, and it’s really about setting up what works for you. So, if it’s two to three times a week, just start there. You can start with even once a week. But again, make sure it’s value added. It’s not about so much the frequency in that time period, but it’s about the value you’re adding per time you show up. Each time you show up on the platform.
So, I would probably tell you from a time frame, depending on their level of activity, the content, it can take a month or two, three months before they start to get noticed. But the legwork and the consistency, again, helps. It will never ever hurt.
You mentioned consistency a few times now, Orlando. Why is it important to be consistent when creating content during a job search?
Yeah, great question. So, with that, I think, once you understand, too, the algorithm of any social media platform, and we’re talking about LinkedIn specifically; you show up once or twice, you kind of lose your momentum when you get started. Your first one or two posts will start to get legwork, but you’ll also need to build a network to get more views. But, again, it’s not so much how large your network is. Again, it’s the value.
But you post once, and then three weeks later, you post again, the algorithm will start to push down your content because it’s not showing up enough. In this way, you lose traction. And then internally, you start to lose steam and kind of confidence and be like, hey, this effort is not going to work for me, or this method is not going to work for me. But job seekers need to understand it’s not one silver bullet that’s gonna fix it. It’s added on to what you traditionally need to do when it comes to applying for jobs.
Still apply through the ATS, still fill out the application, still try to step up, you know, informational conversations with hiring managers or job seekers or other employees in that organization. But then, this is just an added tool. And again, start slow. So this way, you can manage it and stay consistent, so it’ll build your profile.
What about online platforms, Orlando? Do you recommend focusing only on LinkedIn? Or is there value in looking at other platforms, as well?
Absolutely, you know, TikTok is huge right now, as well as Instagram. But I think that’s specialized to a certain demographic. You know, the Gen Zs, the Gen Ys may not be on TikTok as much as the millennial group. So, that varies, but I would say where you’re most comfortable, understand that platform and put all of your efforts in that, versus trying to be a jack of trades of all, and then you fall short because then you start to break down your consistency because you’re saying, oh, I’m posting here, I’m posting here, and I’m not seeing anything, and then you quit all efforts.
So, I would say, for mid to senior-level professionals, and again, it could be a demographic thing, I see it more on LinkedIn because that’s really a global business platform. There’s no other platform like it. Right? Almost a billion users, if not more by now, that you can reach across the globe in a matter of seconds. So, I would say, start there because it’s set up for that.
Well, let’s talk about creating content. What are good sources to draw on for ideas for content that is gonna help you during your job search?
So what I’ve noticed is someone always follows someone who’s influencing them in some form or fashion, whether it’s personal or career-related. So if you have this, you know, mentor that you don’t have a relationship with but you’re following them from afar, I would say, there’s nothing wrong with kind of duplicating what they’re doing. Not saying stealing their style of content creation, but drawing information from a topic they may have talked about.
Again, in your zone of genius because you don’t want to step into a pool where you don’t have a strong depth of information because then you can’t consistently put out content of value on the long term. So you want to, again, stay in your zone of genius, but look for reference points. Any books you’ve read, any podcasts you’ve listened to, any conversations, any conferences you’ve attended. Those are great leverage tools to make notes, jot down ideas, and expand on that, and then post and build out.
What folks talk about now is a lot of content calendar, where you can build out several ideas, and just once a week post, you know, step one on executing this, step two on executing this, step three on going forward. So this way, you have a body of work that you’re building up, you don’t feel like you’re pressured to scramble and create something on the fly each week. Plan ahead. This way, you’re comfortable, you’re at ease, and you can, again, stay consistent.
Terrific. We’re gonna take a break, Orlando. So, stay with us. When we come back, Orlando Haynes will continue to share his advice on how content creation can help your job search and how to do it.
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Now, let’s get back to the show.
We’re back in the Mac’s List studio. I’m talking with Orlando Haynes.
He joins us from Tampa, Florida.
Now, Orlando, before the break, we were talking about how content creation can help your job search and how to do it, and you shared some ideas for where to look for content, drawing on your professional experience or your reading and other work that you’re doing in your professional space.
What about forms of content? In the first segment, you gave us a few examples of what you might do and the form your content could take. Can you give us some more examples of the kinds of content you could create, drawing on the ideas you shared earlier?
Absolutely, Mac. So, there’s several kinds. I think there’s about six that I kind of talk about. You have the, again, the long-form content, where it’s just strictly text. Short-form context but with a static post. So, you can draw on a picture, you know, put a picture in there, add your content, your verbiage, your insight to it.
Then there’s also the LinkedIn audio feature. If you’re feeling more confident in your ability to kind of host an event. So, now you become the center of attention at that point when you’re hosting an event on your own. And then you have, obviously, LinkedIn Live to do that, as well. And then just a video. So that can be an organic video from the platform itself using your mobile device, or you upload a video.
My go-to preference that I don’t see too many job seekers doing if at all, is posting a video sharing your insights. But, again, start small. If you, again, want to just share your text on an article that you’ve seen, great way. Newsletters are really having a surge in showing your thought leadership aptitude there in that space. More folks are able to read versus listen to a video at work.
So, you think about the audience you’re touching. But, if you’re looking to really stand out, the more video content would get about four to five times X times noticeable, if that’s the word, I’m kind of throwing it together. But, with visibility, again, visibility creates opportunity. So, the more video you do, the more eyeballs will be seeing. But, again, I want to share with the job seekers and your listeners, it’s about the content and the value you’re sharing on the platform.
So, pay attention to what you’re sharing and the medium. Whether it’s video, text, an image, or an audio clip, it matters. But it’s the idea and the content that you’re putting out there that’s gonna make all the difference. Is that right, Orlando?
Absolutely, so think of it this way, YouTube and folks who are kind of in this content creation space, the big thing now on the YouTube platform is not long-form video. It’s the Shorts. So that’s a minute of content that’s being utilized. And so, they’re pouring their efforts on people staying on the platform creating Shorts, short-form videos, again, a minute or less.
LinkedIn does the same. If you’re on, again, a LinkedIn Newsletter, they love that. And then they also love video. So, again, the more people stay on the platform, the better; they’ll push your content to the top visibility. There’s all kinds of things behind the scenes. You have a short time before ten percent of your network sees it before the content starts to get pushed down.
So, be selective in what you’re doing. Again, if you’re brand new to it, start with text, it’s easier you’re behind the scenes and just sharing your content. Now, we share for folks who are fearful. I’ve never had a negative impact on anything I’ve shared on LinkedIn. For the most part, ninety-eight percent of the folks, ninety-nine percent of the folks will support what you put out as long as it’s value.
Earlier, you mentioned doing comments on people’s posts, and I bring that up because the idea of creating a video or audio clip might seem overwhelming to somebody who hasn’t done it before. But, when you comment on someone else’s LinkedIn article or a post or a video that they’re sharing, that has value, too. Doesn’t it, Orlando?
Tremendous value, Mac, tremendous. And that’s probably the first step. You said it correctly. That’s probably the first step, again. But it’s also the value and what you bring. So, it’s not just liking it and saying, hey, great article, great post, I like it, I love it. Think about two or three sentences that you can add from a different perspective or insight or add-on to what he or she, the originator of the post, added.
Because, again, people want to see what you know. You’ll be surprised how many people want to hear your story or your understanding of a specific topic. So, share something insightful.
Again, there’s been articles that come out in a report that talks about all of the different mediums and avenues to break down on content creation on LinkedIn, and what actually draws the most type of visual and eyeballs to your profile, and sharing true, again, true information on a basic comment versus just sending an emoji or just saying, great job, great post, really adds value. Adds content.
And tag people. Tag someone that maybe shares your viewpoint or you think they should see the article or whatever it is first. You start tagging people as well. That will create eyeballs, again, to your profile.
Tell us more about why it matters, what difference it can make if you leave a two or three-sentence comment versus two or three words. Why does that matter, Orlando?
It shows that you took the time to consume the content and that you truly digested what was shared on the platform. Because anyone can go down and just click, you know, the like button or the thumbs up, the heart emoji, the hand claps, the crying, the laughing emojis there, or the interest emoji. Anyone can go down and just do that.
But when you’ve actually read, processed, and then, have an idea or opinion on that content that was shared, that shows someone, oh wow, they’re interested. I have someone that I can maybe connect to. You now start to build out also your network because you’ll start to see these folks that share your ideas and values, and viewpoints. And you’ll be surprised. They’ll start to look to you over time to see what you’re going to say.
And then, you can actually build content from that. Seeing what other people’s comments are, have an idea from what someone posted, or what someone shared in the comments, and build off of that. So new relationships can be built; that’s when opportunities can come your way, job opportunities, conversations. You never know. It could be something that’s fueling your entrepreneurial spirit, that what you said five minutes ago, a day ago, spawned a new relationship.
So, you’re doing a job search. You’ve got goals. They’re companies organizations where you’re interested in working. There are employers you want to connect with. How do you take these strategic goals, Orlando, and apply them to the content creation and engagement that you’re doing on the LinkedIn platform? So that when you do comment or share content, it’s helping you get to that job search goal. How do you see people do that?
One of the coolest ways is really going on the employer’s page and seeing what they’re sharing. Whether, again, it’s an article or a video. Whatever is showing what’s going on inside their organization, you know, what project or widget they sell and commenting on it. Right? If you had a personal experience with their services or product, share that in the comment.
Again, people will start to look at that. The first folks that may see it would be the HR team or the recruiting team, for sure. And there’s nothing wrong with saying, hey, would love to talk to someone about, you know, opportunities further in the organization. I’ve been a fan of your product, personally used it, and then kind of leave it there. Don’t be too aggressive with that. But, again, share your comments and thoughts on the company page.
And, plus, you can see who the leaders are. You see leaders that are active on the platform comment on what they’re sharing, too. So, it’s all about the level of activity. But again, Mac, earlier, we talked about consistency. That’s where it really starts to separate you, is the consistency and value.
And what happens when you get the attention of the HR team at a company, perhaps, that’s on your target list or an employer you hope to have, perhaps, an informational interview with? Does that increase the likelihood that you’re going to accomplish those goals?
It does. So, I would say expectations, thinking if you get the hiring manager to like or reach back out to you doesn’t mean you’re going to get a job or an interview right off the back. But it does open a door for discussion of some sort.
So, again, it’s also building your network because he or she may know someone in the competitor company that’d say, hey, we don’t have anything for an IT cyber security manager. But, X, Y, Z, person knows. I like your background. I’ll have no problem sharing your information. Here’s who the point of contact is. Let me reach out to them first to make sure it’s okay, so forth, and so on.
So, again, the goal is to add value first. It’s almost like the reverse of WIIFM. What’s in it for me? Don’t take that approach. Take the approach of serving. Serving by sharing value, serving by sharing insight, and what comes of that is you’ll have an authentic relationship, network building process that can expand.
Again, that may be in the target job you’re looking for or company, but it can lead to something else. So, if you have a list of five organizations, you target company A, but they may know somebody in company C that gets you the opportunity.
Well, it’s been a terrific conversation, Orlando. Now, tell us, what’s next for you?
Yeah, absolutely, Mac. So, definitely excited about growing the CareerTALKS Podcast that you can find each week on LinkedIn, I do LinkedIn lives with all career experts in the field. Also on the Apple, Spotify, Podcasts, as well as YouTube.
And then, super excited about continuing to grow the audience and support around the Career Accelerator Planner that my partner Kareen Turner and I recently launched. So, that’s a cool deal. It’s the first of its kind to where job seekers are able to document and track their wins, their projects, and value in corporate America. So it helps them in their career transitions, conversations around promotions, merit increases, salary negotiations. So, no more forgetting what you leave on the table. It’s all about sharing and owning your worth.
Well, terrific. I know listeners can learn more about the Career Accelerator Planner by visiting the website careeracceleratorplanner.com, and you also invite listeners to connect with you on LinkedIn, and as always, I hope they’ll mention that they heard you on Find Your Dream Job when they reach out to you there.
Now, Orlando, given all the great advice you’ve shared today, what’s the one thing you want a listener to remember about how content creation can help your job search and how to do it?
Yeah, Mac, so that’s a great question. I would tell you, it’s a quote that most of us probably know. “You don’t have to be great to get started, but you do have to get started to be great.”
So, it’s about taking immediate massive action. Just get started. Don’t worry about it being perfect. Don’t worry about being pretty. Just get started.
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