Recruitment marketing is a popular topic in the talent acquisition world, and for good reason. With the exponential growth of social media across demographics it is becoming apparent that in order to attract top talent, recruiters should take a page from the marketer's handbook. The argument for building a strong online presence is threefold:
- It is necessary for getting on the radar of attractive candidates. The most desirable talent is off the market in 10 days. If they have never heard of you, chances are they will find employment at a more well known organization.
- The line between customer and candidate acquisition is blurring. Applicants who have an enjoyable, engaging candidate experience are more likely to become customers and recommend the organization to their friends- even if they did not get the job.
- It sets the stage for other online success. A strong recruiting presence acts as a powerful brand builder. Customers prefer taking their business to a place that treats its workers right, so if your organization becomes known as a phenomenal and engaging place to work, brand success will follow.
So how should you go about building a strong online presence? While each organization should have a unique gameplan, every recruitment team should consider these three social strategies that actually work:
1. Buff Up Your Blog (and link to it)
Create engaging content. Blog posts should do more than explain what your organization does and its take on the latest issues. While consistent updates are important, it is more important to tell your organization's story.
Candidates have more access to information than ever before- let them read between the lines with engaging employee profiles and event recaps. Show what your company is about with workplace videos and Candid Camera style interviews. Building an honest and compelling narrative is difficult, but it is worth the effort.
Just as important as creating compelling content, is letting candidates know it exists. You should be responding to candidate questions and addressing customers' concerns through social media anyway, and users will note constructive responses. After you've built repore through social media, those who you've interacted with will be more apt to visit and share your content.
If you're having trouble coming up with content, consider turning a candidate question into an informative blog post. Eventually your stockpile of quality content will grow to address the most common concerns- in which case you have a response ready-made.
2. Demolish the "Iron Curtain" Around Your Workplace
Let your employees organically tell their workplace stories on social media. This establishes an air of authenticity, as well as providing insight into your organization's day-to-day life.
Top achievers tend to be friends with other top achievers, so allowing your employees to access to social media at work is a great source of free advertising to talent you would be targeting anyway.
Encouraging employees to share their work life also gives candidates credible insight into what they can expect to experience while working for your organization. But more than learning about your organization's brand, they will learn about the people they will work with and how things get done. These are workplace qualities that cannot be enumerated on a job application.
3. Build an Identity
This is perhaps the most important social strategy of all. As Tim Sackett explains: "Your reality is that if you want to 'sell' a candidate on why they should come to work for you, you first need to know who you are." Candidates want their workplace to have an identity, a unifying theme they can rally around and identify with.
Once an identity is established, everything else will follow organically: your social media accounts will be able to establish a unique tone, blog content will flow naturally, and employees will share their stories on social media. These then reinforce and refine your organization's identity.
Of course, building an identity is easier said than done. Creating a cohesive story, finding people who buy into that story, and living that story is difficult and time consuming. It is helpful to start with your workplace innovators, and discovering what makes them tick- and what makes them stay. Then move to the workplace leaders and identify their most effective leadership strategies; chances are there's a theme.
Every organization has a particular way of doing things, a unique strategy that acts to distinguish it from the competition. Elucidating that feeling, that system, that ambiance- then reinforcing and elevating it in the workplace will allow your organization's unique character to flourish naturally.