BLOG: Follow the white rabbit social media and networking!'

I love social media; it is a great way to keep in touch and be social, find out what is going on in your area, and share your snapshots with friends and family. I have always had it down on the social side, and I dabbled with my professional presence until recently when I became the social media lead for ISCoS and started to delve deeper into this world of follows, likes, posts and shares.

 It can be quite a rabbit hole as you follow the white rabbit and fall down, down, down into the Twittersphere or Tik Tok video dancing wormhole. Since my new role in April 2021 I have however realised the real value of using social media for professional connections and networking.  I have witnessed the social media postings promoting the deadline for abstracts, helping us achieve a record amount of abstracts for this year's meeting. We promote the SCI Care:What really matters podcast mainly through our social media channels and have reached 65 countries worldwide. It is a phenomenal way to get your message out fast.

 I have connected with peers, colleagues and some of the rock stars from our profession. Social media makes everyone more accessible and visible, which means research, work and information can be easy to share or consume.

 For an early career researcher like myself, this is priceless. But it is for everyone wherever you are in your career. If you are starting out, you want all the information and connections you can make and if you are established, you can share connections, linking people together and offering mentoring from a more informal platform.

 So how can social media help you when you are attending such an event as #ISCoS2021 (see what I did there? Hashtags are important.) Well, building on the excellent advice from the joint tips of attending a virtual conference produced by THE SRI and ISCoS I will give you some social media tips that will accelerate your experience and exposure.

 Have you completed your profile section?

Let people know who you are and what your field of interest is. For Facebook fill in the 'about you section' on Twitter you can add a short bio and use icons to save on your character count and then there is LinkedIn. You can really go to town on your description and add links to your most impressive work. Just as you would build a paper portfolio, you are building your online presence.

 Be Visible              

Don't be a social media lurker; follow, interact, share and comment. By doing this, you are increasing your own exposure but you are also supporting the community. Before #ISCoS2021 have a look at the programme and link with speakers.

 Be Engaging

Share interesting posts, content and useful information for your audience or start your own conversations, share your work, opinions and thoughts, show your human side.

 Email signature

Add your social media links to your email signature, make it easy for people to connect with you.

 Take part

During the meeting post about the sessions you have attended, tag the speakers, tag colleagues you know will be interested. Support the event, let people know what you are enjoying about this years ISCoS

 Bonus Tip

Consider creating a personal blog. Tell your story, share your experiences. I have personal experience as to how effective this one is!

 Why not put some of these tips in place in time for the 60th ISCoS Annual meeting

‘Curiouser  and curiouser’, you will be amazed how quickly your network will grow.

 

Dr Jenn Coker ~ 2021

Where to find us

National Spinal Injuries Centre,
Stoke Mandeville Hospital,
Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire,
HP21 8AL, United Kingdom

How to contact us

Tel: +44 1296 315 866

Email: admin@iscos.org.uk

Contact ISCoS Headquarters for Application forms, copies of the Constitution and Bye-Laws of the Society, queries on the journal delivery and information on Scientific Meetings.

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