I’m no dummy! A book review: Job Searching with Social Media For Dummies by Joshua Waldman

"Job Searching with Social Media for Dummies" by Joshua Waldman

Why am I reviewing this book?
This book’s focus really spoke to me and I just had to read it. My current job search has been connected to social media like never before and my interest in both is at an all-time high at the moment.   And if I am interested in it, surely others will be interested. Heck, that is why I started this blog!

Disclosure: There isn’t anything to disclose ;-). I read this book and am reviewing it just because I feel like it. While I read this book on my Kindle Fire, I have no relationship with Amazon other than being an avid fan and customer.

Some initial concerns
I had a few concerns before reading this book. First, the book was published in August 2011.  Things change so fast in social media that information gets outdated quickly. Next, “For Dummies” books can be hit-or-miss in their coverage of the subject matter.  Similar to the “Goldilocks and the Three Bears” story, “For Dummies” information can be too easy, too difficult or juuuusssst right. And lastly, would this book be applicable to me, a job searcher with significant professional experience and some experience with social media?  I already have presences on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest.

My review
Was I in for a pleasant surprise!  While this book covered the  basics that I already knew, it also provided a LOT of in-depth information and tidbits that were incredibly useful, like:

  • Personal branding. Establish your online persona, make it consistent and own it!  There’s much more to this than meets the eye.
  • LinkedIn headlines, profiles, groups and networking.  There are plenty of nuances that I hadn’t been leveraging. Did you know that your professional headline shouldn’t be just your current position?  Have you added applications to your profile?  Have you joined groups or answered questions?
  • Using Twitter and Facebook as part of your job search.  This book did a nice job in tying these into the overall job search and personal brand picture and explaining why these are pertinent.  The suggestion about creating a “limited access” list on Facebook for certain friends is oh-so-clever and that alone makes this book worth the purchase price.

I really appreciated the tone of this book.  It was concise, thorough, well-organized and didn’t make me feel … well, like a dummy.  This book covers A LOT of material and I would suggest approaching it in one of two ways:

  1. Read the book through, implementing the higher level tips as you go along and then doing a deep dive afterward; or
  2. Read the book section-by-section and implement the suggestions completely in each section before moving on to the next.

To get the most out of it, you’ll need a basic understanding of some social media platforms (so much for that initial concern of mine).  I’d suggest having a Facebook account and a LinkedIn profile at a minimum. If you are new to social media, plan on taking your time to digest the book and leave yourself plenty of time to research the basics online as you go along.  This book would also be useful to those who are NOT job searching, too.  After all, who doesn’t need to build and maintain a personal brand?

One of the few cons is simply that this book was published 10 months ago.  For example Google+ is not mentioned at all in the book and I would recommend that this topic be reviewed by anyone interested in social media.

Final thoughts
In summary, I would highly recommend this book if you are serious about leveraging social media for your own personal benefit.  Approach the book with the understanding that there is a lot to learn and consider the book an ongoing project :-).   You may not need to use all of the content contained here but regardless, this book will give you a solid review of social media that you’ll need to get ahead. Happy reading!

Will you read this book? Have you read this book?  What did you think?  I’d love to read your thoughts and suggestions below :-).

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