Everyone can say "I've got connections". But what does it really mean to you as a job seeker/ job finder. In the world of Facebook, and LinkedIn, it can mean personal friends on Facebook and professional friends/connections on LinkedIn. What's fun and exciting is to make new connections - - especially on LinkedIn if you're looking for a career change. And then there's Twitter. I can't quite get my arms around it - - but it is fun to see who's saying what - - and retweet the good tweets (now this is a whole new language and there are no birds involved at all!).
Certainly you should remember how to "close the loop" whenever you find a job (or a company) that looks promising. By closing the loop, I mean finding someone on LinkedIn who is associated with the company that you can reach out to via an inmail and close the loop on a connection. While you won't hit a home run every time, you will get more hits than misses and the journey can be amazing.
Add in Skype w/camera and you are suddenly talking in real time, looking at someone in real time - even though you may be thousands of miles apart. That electronic face-to-face connection can be a deciding factor in your career search - - - not only for now, but in the next few years as you move to another position in another company - - and quite possibly another country as well. It happened to me in the past 2 days. I talked with my son who's currently in China on Monday morning (my time) using Skype - - amazing technology. Today I exchanged IM's with a client who is in Afghanistan, and on Friday I will Skype with a colleague in Poland!!! Oh, I'm also now connected to Marina in Armenia and I haven't included those who are following me on Twitter.