Friday, April 30th, 2010

Twitter, Bret Michaels and Job Search

I’ve never really been a big fan of Poison or Bret Michaels. I don’t have any of his music on my iPod and when Rock of Love came out I rolled my eyes.

But all that changed this week when it was reported that Bret Michaels had suffered from a brain hemorrhage. Maybe it’s because he and I are around the same age or maybe it is because he has young children, or perhaps it is because I have a family member who battles diabetes, but all of a sudden I started identifying with Bret Michaels and felt the need to know his status on a fairly regular basis.

I was using traditional media outlets to source information…mostly TV and newspapers and then moved on to Internet searches. But these methods didn’t give me the quick digestible sound bites I was looking for. So I set up a column on Tweet Deck to search tweets on Bret Michaels to stay informed of his condition. This opened up a window into who his fans (and haters) are and what is being reported on him and now I feel like I know everything about the guy.

Such is the power of Twitter. It allows you to quickly become an expert on anything or anyone and follow that person or topic in real-time…even if you never thought much about that person or topic before.

Which leads me to job search. If you are looking for a job, one strategy is to decide what companies you would like to work for and target them directly. Once you determine that a particular target is relevant, it is important to learn as much as you can about the company and its brand attributes and even its evangelists and competitors. It is also important to create a dialogue with people who work at that company or others who are talking about them. Enter Twitter. I think Twitter is a phenomenal tool for doing company research and learning everything you need to know about a company, warts and all. You can complement your research on Twitter by adding the Google Buzz application to your LinkedIn profile to search on multiple companies at once.

Scratch the second sentence of this post. I’m going to go download Every Rose Has its Thorn to my iPod now…and maybe catch an old episode of Celebrity Apprentice that is on the DVR…and hope Bret Michaels recovers soon.