Integrating Social Media into Your Talent Recruitment Strategy

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Social Media Marketing can play an important role in keeping a pipeline of potential targets informed and possibly interested. Running groups, newsletters, and events along with social media shares can make a difference in the perception of your company as well as attract the right people. Combining channels means reminders and further reach.

For starters, your profile as a marketer is important (see some LinkedIn Profile SEO tips). As of late, LinkedIn is also more likely to promote something you share if it correlates with your profile background.

Part of our work happens on Social Media. We share content, moderate Social Network groups, and also use the groups to promote our events. We have made mistakes along the way for sure, and eventually learned a few Social Marketing tips that do not require special tools, yet save time, and expand the reach. See some of our numbers below (showing that we are reaching interested people).

Here are some aspects of Online Marketing.

Events. Does your company host or participate in events attractive to your target audience? Posting them on Social Media will allow you to track the audience and even expand your email list (e.g., from LinkedIn Events).

Groups. LinkedIn Groups are long beyond their glamor days. But you can “pin” and “broadcast” messages which makes them (more) visible. Professional Facebook Groups, on the other hand, are flourishing; as an admin, you have marketing power.

Newsletters. If you set your LinkedIn profile to be in “creative mode,” you can start a newsletter. If you are busy, get help from ChatGPT for editing and Grammarly, for polishing. While “plain” LinkedIn articles are barely shown, newsletters (i.e. articles with a “newsletter” option) have a good chance to gather an audience.

I will share Social Marketing tips and techniques in a brand-new webinar

“Integrating Social Media into Your Talent Recruitment Strategy”

on JULY 27 @ 8 AM PACIFIC, and you are invited!

P.S. Our “social” numbers:

Who Needs LinkedIn Recruiter? X-Ray vs. LinkedIn Search Comparison Chart – July 2023

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Hung Lee asked me on the recent Brainfood on Air show dedicated to LinkedIn, whether the comparison chart between X-Ray and LinkedIn Recruiter remains the same as in October 2022 when I published it. Not quite. Thanks to David Galley for helping me to update it.
The changes are mostly subtle though. X-Ray remains a powerful tool.

Enjoy! LinkedIn Recruiter Google X-Ray (finds public profiles) Google Template Example
Name Y Y intitle:<name> intitle:”phil tusing”
Current Job Title Y (false positives) Y (false positives) Y – intitle:<title> intitle:”executive assistant”
Current Company Y (false positives) Y (false positives) Y – intitle:<company> intitle:seekout
Last Company on Profile (even if left) N N Y – inanchor:<company> inanchor:”morgan stanley”
Last School on Profile N N Y – inanchor:<school> inanchor:ucla
Headline N Y – headline: secret operator Y – inanchor:<headline> inanchor:”open to work”
Summary N Y – summary: secret operator N
Current Job Title Y Y Y intitle:machinist
Job descriptions N N Y (by keywords) “scaled up” start-up cloud bay area
Self-Entered Skills Y – in Company Employees and School Alums search Y – skills: secret operator N
Skills and Assessments N Y but works almost like keywords
Past Company Y Y Y (by keywords) -intitle:chevron inanchor:chevron
Past Job Locations N N Y (by keywords) “united kingdom” canada AROUND(3) present
Past Job – <title at company> N N Y – use AROUND(X) “CFO” CFO AROUND(3) google
YOE N Y (but rounded) N
True Years at Company N Y (but rounded) Y – with AROUND(X) or Asterisks “present” “present” AROUND “2..6 years” operations manager
Years in Position N Y (but rounded) N
Current Location Y – by Area  Name Y by Area  Name or Zip/Radius Y – by Area  Name present AROUND(3) “greater new york” operations manager “new york”
Profile in Language Y Y Y – secondary profiles end in /<lg> – 2-letter country abbreviation*/fr
Spoken Languages N Y Y – approximate “Native or bilingual proficiency” tagalog
Function (calculated) N Y N
Seniority (calculated) N Y N
Company Type (calculated) N Y N
Company Size (calculated) N Y N
School Y (Boolean) Y (selection only) Y (by keywords; imprecise) “school of arts and enterprise” -intitle:”school of arts”
Last School N N Y – inanchor:<school> scientist inanchor:sorbonne “sorbonne”
Field of study N Y Y (by keywords) “quantum physics” university Phd
Industry Y Y N  
Years of study N (but see school alumni search) Y (but not tied to a school) N
Degree N Y (but may be incomplete) Y (by keywords) mba AROUND(3) wharton management consultant big 4
Grades at School N N Y (by keywords) GPA AROUND(3) “4.0” accounting
Other accomplishments – Publications/Projects/Courses/Licenses/etc N N Y (by keywords) “credential ID” AROUND(2) CDSP
Recommendations N N Y (by keywords)
Open to Work Status N Y N
Network Relationships Y (buggy) Y (buggy) N
Followers of Y N N
Connections Of Y N N
Group Member N Y N
Open to Volunteering Y N N
Service categories Y N Y (some)
To generate target public profile lists in Excel by precise search, use our tool Social List (trial, subscription) Check out my 7-Day Bootcamp starting September 5th

Let’s Search on Github Update

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We did not anticipate such a huge response to the Let’s Seach on Github Google Sheets table.

Two things emerged:

  • The use was so (unexpectedly) high – we got tens of thousands of calls in the logs – that some people did not get the data due to timeouts.
  • Many users could not figure it out. We did not anticipate the need for customer support. Requests were coming from blog comments, Twitter, Messenger, you name it.

So here is what’s happening:

  1. The current table will remain as-is. We do not offer support for it.
  2. We are working on launching an online tool similar to the popular table but with easy-to-use UX. From a search for Github users by language and location, you would get a spreadsheet with developers’ information including profiles and emails. It will probably take a month or so to launch.

In the future, we will also populate the soon-to-be-alive BrainGainSoft site with other sourcing tools, going beyond IT sourcing. One of the next projects is a Google search results scraper. (As you may know, with the recent rearrangement of Google search results, most of those tools are broken).

[EDITED]: for updated information, please go to Github Syntax and the LUSOG Tool Release.


LinkedIn, Do You Have Any Recommendations?

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Guest post from Talent Sourcer Mike Santoro

LinkedIn does not value public candidate recommendations as much as Recruiters and Sourcers do.  There is currently no way to search natively on Linkedin for candidates publicly endorsed by their managers, coworkers, clients, and friends.  Even more valuable would be a way to search the rich text that people use to describe the people they recommend.  This post will show you a new way to search for candidates based on the text in their recommendations section.

Social proof is powerful.  As a Recruiter and Sourcer, it feels like receiving a delightful and unexpected present when you find a great candidate and scroll down to the bottom of their profile and see they have 5-10 public “glowing” recommendations.

Working with candidates who have public recommendations on their profiles has at least three significant advantages:

1) You feel more confident in the authenticity of the candidate’s work history, skills, and abilities because others have publicly attested to it.  When recommenders are willing to put their professional reputation and name on the line as a “public stamp of approval,” their testimonies bear weight.

2) You can enhance your personalized outreach messaging – “Hey Bill, I saw John Smith highly recommended you on Linkedin and said you were ‘dedicated and resourceful’…”

2) It’s easier to “Sell” your candidate to Hiring Managers. The social proof of 5 colleagues who worked with the candidate for three years is substantial evidence for the hiring manager to feel more confident in their decision.

Usually, recruiters must persuade hiring managers to interview candidates based on their impressions from (often) limited data points such as resume and profile quality, social media postings, and prescreen call impressions. Social proof, like LinkedIn Recommendations, equip recruiters with another high-quality data point that adds validation,

“Mr. Hiring Manager, don’t take my word for it; read these five recommendations on LinkedIn from people who have worked with John for the last six years.  Take a look at what they say about him:”

How to X-Ray Recommendations Text:

With this new string, you can search LinkedIn profiles by words and phrases in the candidate’s recommendations section.

Google “click here to view” AROUND(100) “[insert keyword(s) or phrase]”

for example, “click here to view” AROUND(100) (“Excellent Manager”) “click here to view” AROUND(100) (“caring”|”honest”|”reliable”)

You can also do multiple phrases separately, but repeat the entire AROUND(100) function like this: “click here to view” AROUND(100) (“Excellent Manager”) “click here to view” AROUND(100) (“caring”|”honest”|”reliable”)

How do you apply this idea to your searches?

(Crash course on google x-ray search)

inanchor: operator will search headline, location, most recent company name, most recent school name

(see more on inanchor: in these articles Sink Into LinkedIn Headlines – Tie inanchor: To Your Strings and Raise inanchor: Sail to LinkedIn Locations, Titles, and Schools

intitle: operator will search current (present) company title and current (present) company name.

Example search with recommendation text:

Commercial Construction Project Managers (by current title or headline) in Phoenix, AZ, who also have LinkedIn recommendations where recommenders describe them as “Well Organized” OR “Highly Organized” OR “Dedicated:” (intitle:”project manager” | inanchor:”project manager”) “click here to view” AROUND(100) (“well organized” | “highly organized” | “dedicated”)  inanchor:phoenix commercial construction

This search has 64 results.

Try it out!  Think creatively about what words people might use to recommend your targeted candidates. This is a new search strategy, so it will take time to perfect.

Other ways to search for profiles with recommendations without searching the text of the recommendation:

Mike’s “A-Players” String = profiles with at least five public recommendations on Linkedin: “5..75 people have recommended”


Profiles with any number of recommendations: “recommendations received”

“For 💓 of Sourcing and Sourcers”Mike Santoro


How Good is ChatGPT Plugin Scraper?

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One of the ChatGPT Plugins is Scraper. Here are my impressions about it.

While it is uncertain how well it can – we need more testing – it shows a decent degree of Internet access compared to other plugins.

Unlike many scrapers, it will not access pages where you are logged in. So it is not an option to use it on a LinkedIn search. However, it did access a dynamic page – Google search results – and produced them, in the same order that I had encountered:

There is built-in protection against scraping personal data:

Scraper even told me at one point that “it’s against OpenAI’s use case policy to use the model for data scraping, especially personal data.” (Sounds ambivalent.)

As often happens, rephrasing your request makes a difference. It may also help to come to the task slowly, starting with asking for little. Then, catchey.

I started a new chat, to forget our unfortunate history, and asked to get the names only. Next request was to put the names into a table and add a column for email. It worked; Scraper even parsed the names into the first and last, omitting degrees and middle initials, and fixed masked emails (like <first dot last at company>).

From playing with Scraper, here are some conclusions:

ChatGPT is excellent at cleaning up data – a frequent task for those who work with professional profiles.

ChatGPT Scraper is more of a toy tool at the moment, I think. It works well to summarize pages. But when you need data collected:

  • It will require a lot of talking into that and will usually return partial results
  • It will not access LinkedIn, a gap in Instant Data Scraper capabilities
  • A “scrape-in” task where you collect links from pages first, then dive into them and parse them all into a table seems impossible.

Have you found plugins you use and like?

Registration has opened for my now-seven-day

Talent Sourcing Bootcamp in September


We will dedicate a full session to ChatGPT and AI in sourcing and recruiting. I hope you will join me!

Seating is limited.





Let’s Search on Github

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[EDITED]: for updated information, please go to Github Syntax and the LUSOG Tool Release.

Hiring Software Developers? This awesome tool, created by our IT consultant, was the highlight of my presentation at #sosutech. Its purpose is to collect user profile data into a table. Here is how to make it yours.

1. Copy  to your Drive

2.Generate a free API token at

3. Try to run (any) script and give it permission to run

Now you can search for users with the location: and language: operators and populate the table:

Another function allows you to get user names and other profile information from a list of email addresses.


Doximity Healthcare Custom Search Engine

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Are you curious about Custom Search Engine operators more:pagemap:? The Healthcare site Doximity offers, I think, the richest set of them.

Look at the export of a search on Doximity with our tool Social List, based on CSE APIs:

Here is the list of operators applicable on a Doximity CSE:

  • more:p:metatags-profile_first_name:$firstname
  • more:p:metatags-profile_last_name:$lastname
  • more:p:metatags-profile_gender:$gender
  • more:p:person-honorificsuffix:$degree
  • more:p:person-jobtitle:$jobtitle
  • more:p:educationalorganization-name:$eduname
  • more:p:profilepage-award:$award
  • more:p:profilepage-affiliation:$affiliation
  • more:p:postaladdress-addresslocality:$city
  • more:p:postaladdress-addressregion:$state
  • more:p:postaladdress-postalcode:$postalcode
  • more:p:medicalscholarlyarticle-name:$topic

Please join us for the upcoming class on JUNE 28 & 29 @ 8 AM PDT,

Practical Healthcare Sourcing

Sign up early; seating is limited.

ChatGPT Bing vs Others for Site Summaries

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Of Bing Chat, ChatGPT Bing plugin, Google BARD, and Google SGE (I’m on the waiting list), my favorite so far is the ChatGPT Bing plugin. It seems best at digesting website content.

(That said, I do not think anyone has come up with even a design of a workable combination of web search and AI-generated content. Sites plainly put both on the same page: Bing, in two different tabs, BARD, with an added link “search Google,” and Google SGE, with a featured snippet-like summary above the search results).

I have asked the first three to generate a FAQ for (which we are in need of for the redesigned site).

  • Bing Chat refused, you know, “As an AI program…” However, I asked the very same question again, and it did respond (a good lesson here). Its answers are the shortest and include links to the sources. It is not easy to make Bing write up longer descriptions.
  • ChatGPT Bing plugin created a nice FAQ with included links. At a close examination though the links all pointed to the site, not to the content described. Too bad. Bing Chat is better at including links.
  • BARD initially created a FAQ that was answering questions but also asked them! I had to tell it to explain. BARD is quite verbose; its output would be too long for a site, I think.
    Neither BARD nor Google SGE tells you where they got the information from. I think it is a downside.


Q: What is A: provides top-tier sourcing training, evaluation, and credentialing services for talent professionals worldwide1.

Q: What kind of training does offer? A: They offer a variety of training options including a Diversity Sourcing Program, custom training solutions for teams, and a training library with recordings, eBooks, and more1.

Q: What certifications does offer? A: One of the certifications they offer is the Certified People Sourcing Professional (CPSP) credential. It is granted to those who demonstrate proficiency in six core sourcing skill domains by passing the CPSP Exam2.

ChatGPT Bing plugin:
Q1: What is
A: is a platform that provides training, evaluation, and credentialing services for talent professionals worldwide. They offer a series of training courses and eBooks, certification exams, and custom training solutions.
Q2: Who is behind
A: The platform was founded by Irina Shamaeva, a Partner and Lead Sourcer at Brain Gain Recruiting. The team also includes David Galley, who serves as the Director of Training Programs.
Q3: What resources does offer?
A: provides a range of resources, including a Training Library, Certification Exams, and Custom Training. They also offer a guide to sourcing on GitHub and a book on Google’s Programmable Search Engines. Additionally, the platform features the Boolean Strings Blog, a resource for recruiters and those interested in Open Source Intelligence (OSINT).
Q4: What is the Certified People Sourcing Professional (CPSP) credential?
A: The CPSP is an international industry standard credential that demonstrates sourcing proficiency. offers exams for this certification.
Q5: How can I get custom training from
A: offers custom training solutions for teams of all sizes. If you don’t see what you need on their site, they can build a training program specifically tailored to your needs.
Q6: What is the Boolean Strings Network?
A: The Boolean Strings Network is a community on Facebook where Sourcers, Recruiters, Researchers, Talent Acquisition Professionals, and OSINT people can share their experiences, challenges, and successes. It is linked from the site.
Please note that for specific or more detailed questions, it’s best to directly contact the team at or visit their website.

What is Sourcing Certifications & Training by Brain Gain Recruiting?
Sourcing Certifications & Training by Brain Gain Recruiting is a leading provider of sourcing training and certification for recruiters, sourcers, and talent acquisition professionals. Our training programs are designed to help you develop the skills and knowledge you need to find and engage top talent, regardless of their location.
What are the benefits of getting certified?
There are many benefits to getting certified in sourcing. Certification demonstrates your commitment to professional development and your expertise in the field. It can also help you advance your career, earn a higher salary, and gain access to new opportunities.
What are the different types of certifications offered?
Sourcing Certifications & Training by Brain Gain Recruiting offers a variety of certifications, including:

  • Certified People Sourcing Professional (CPSP): This certification is designed for professionals who are new to sourcing or who want to advance their skills.
  • Certified Diversity Sourcing Professional (CDSP): This certification is designed for professionals who want to learn how to source diverse talent.
  • Certified Sourcing Professional (CSP): This certification is designed for experienced sourcers who want to demonstrate their expertise.
How do I get certified?
To get certified, you must complete a training program and pass an exam. The training programs offered by Sourcing Certifications & Training by Brain Gain Recruiting are available online and in person. The exams are administered by a third-party vendor.
How much does it cost to get certified?
The cost of getting certified varies depending on the type of certification you choose. The cost of the training programs offered by Sourcing Certifications & Training by Brain Gain Recruiting ranges from $1,995 to $3,995. The cost of the exams ranges from $200 to $300.
What are the next steps?
If you are interested in getting certified, the next step is to visit the Sourcing Certifications & Training by Brain Gain Recruiting website and learn more about our training programs and certifications. You can also contact us to speak with a member of our team.
Here are some additional questions that you may have:
  • What are the prerequisites for the training programs?
  • What are the learning outcomes of the training programs?
  • What is the format of the exams?
  • What is the pass rate for the exams?
  • What are the recertification requirements?

We encourage you to visit our website or contact us to learn more about our sourcing training and certification programs. We look forward to helping you advance your career and become a certified sourcing professional!

So I had to ask BARD to give the answer to the question is had posed.

BARD #2:

What are the prerequisites for the training programs?
There are no prerequisites for the training programs offered by Sourcing Certifications & Training by Brain Gain Recruiting. However, some experience in sourcing or recruiting is helpful.
What are the learning outcomes of the training programs?
The learning outcomes of the training programs offered by Sourcing Certifications & Training by Brain Gain Recruiting vary depending on the type of certification you choose. However, all of our training programs will teach you the following:
  • How to identify and find passive candidates
  • How to use social media to source candidates
  • How to build relationships with candidates
  • How to assess candidates’ skills and qualifications
  • How to present candidates to hiring managers
What is the format of the exams?
The exams offered by Sourcing Certifications & Training by Brain Gain Recruiting are multiple-choice exams. The exams are designed to test your knowledge of the material covered in the training programs.
What is the pass rate for the exams?
The pass rate for the exams offered by Sourcing Certifications & Training by Brain Gain Recruiting is 80%.
What are the recertification requirements?
To maintain your certification, you must complete a recertification program every three years. The recertification program includes a combination of online learning and a hands-on assessment.
We hope this information is helpful. Please contact us if you have any further questions.

None of the outputs is perfect. But we see that AI can scan whole (perhaps smaller) sites, not just summarize a page. In my example, none of the players hallucinated; that is cool compared to earlier tests.

ChatGPT and Grammarly combined can improve the language of the outcome. Generally, running your project (any project) through more than one AI platform can be powerful.


Google Returns a Fraction of 2022 Results

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As I have been reviewing the search links in the “Search Is No Longer Boolean” class, I see one obvious change: the number of results for more-or-less complex strings has dramatically declined.

Other searches show similar reductions in results.

What that means, is if you are after as many results as possible, you should vary the search, repeat and replace keywords, and collect all you can.

Tomorrow’s “Search Is No Longer Boolean” is sold out – sign up for the next session!

Facebook Page Hurdles

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I have recently started managing my AI image Facebook page, The Prompter. The experience feels like the 20th century. It is surprising, given the vast audience.

If I am logged in as both me and the page, FB goes into an endless loop wanting to redraw.

The page has two management suits, “Dashboard” and “Meta,” with somewhat overlapping functions.

Connecting Instagram to FB took days; it was failing with an alert and assured me the developers would be notified. Right.

I can only post to both FB and Instagram from “Meta.” I cannot drag the images into a box but have to select them.

The default for sharing is FB only, which I have to cancel. The default time and date is two days ahead. It offers to also share to FB groups but only lists a few.

Instagram accepts only specific aspect rations, so many images cannot go there.

Am I missing something? Why is this process so cumbersome?

If you have not seen my AI art created with Midjourney, please take a look at I have also uploaded the first “how-to” video on Youtube.