Why every student should be on Twitter

Summary:Twitter isn't just about friends, family and colleagues. Not only does Twitter almost guarantee a response from people, it could also land you a job.

A lot of students turn their nose up at Twitter still, and it baffles me.

As a user I am naturally more inclined to be positive about the service. Not necessarily. It's like Marmite. You either love it, or you don't. But those who have not tried it are more likely to respond negatively to it, especially when one might not realise the potential that Twitter offers.

Twitter is an odd 'social network'; if indeed it can be called as such. It is all about communication on mass -- talking to celebrities, friends, colleagues and prospective employers, along with keeping up to date with streams of information provided by others.

And the Generation Y do nothing better than communicating. The two should go together seemingly perfectly, one would think.

But so many of my student colleagues avoid Twitter because it's either "another thing to do", or "I don't see what I can get out of it".

What many forget is that Twitter does not revolve around celebrities and those with a million followers or more.

If you tweet me, I will reply. Always. Not because I feel I have to, but because I want to. You will find that so many will respond if you tweet something that engages with them -- similar to that of an ordinary face-to-face conversation.

For students looking for employment, there are a vast number of Twitter accounts to follow with not only advice, but job offers, and connections to those who are in the industry to sell yourselves to.

The search feature alone allows you to plug in content like "graduate job" already returns a stream of users looking for jobs themselves, accounts offering advice, links to jobs specifically dedicated to graduate students.

And by the time I finished writing that last sentence, another ten results turned up with most of the same thing.

Twitter is not solely about friends, family and colleagues. It is what you make of it. You can apply the same with Facebook -- it can be a sociable platform if you like, but it can also be used for business.

From communicating with clients to discussing products with your following, the social platform does not automatically mean "exclusive to your immediate acquaintances".

But if you are not satisfied with searching for jobs, you should not necessarily expect a job to land in your lap.

It does not mean you should not take the opportunity to broadcast your views and thoughts on a topic you are passionate about. People will notice, and those with similar passions will find you and follow you, and your name will spread further afield.

Eventually someone who wants you will notice, and you could land yourself a job in social media.

Topics: Social Enterprise

About

Zack Whittaker writes for ZDNet, CNET, and CBS News. He is based in New York City.

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