Successfully recruiting talent is more than just posting jobs and waiting for resumes to ping your inbox. To attract the right talented and skilled individuals, employers (and recruiters) must put the right messages in the right places. With that responsibility in perspective, you can see why effective recruitment marketing strategies to source and hire quality candidates can be a complicated and complex process.
An effective recruitment marketing strategy will take a little upfront time and attention. A good strategy will need to encompass who, what, when, where, how, and why. Yet, when done right, the results of a well-thought-out strategy will be worth your effort. Keep reading to learn our recommendations that have provided us with results time and time again.
Recruitment Marketing Starts with a Little Groundwork
Understand your target audience
Before creating a strategy or drafting your messaging, you need to understand the types of candidates that you will come across, whether or not they are actively or passively looking for new opportunities, and how to tailor your recruitment efforts to them. What does this mean exactly? Think of it this way, just because someone is open to new career opportunities doesn’t mean they are looking or even applying.
Some job candidates would be considered active candidates, while others are passive. An active candidate is precisely that, someone who is intentionally searching for a new job opportunity and readily available to join once they are approached. A passive candidate is someone who is currently employed and not purposely looking for another position but would be interested in newer, better opportunities. When creating your recruitment marketing strategy, you need to have a plan in place for both types of candidates. This means knowing why someone would want to leave their current role and knowing what a “perfect fit” looks like for your organization. Having strategies in place that can target both active and passive candidates will help not only expand your talent pool but ensures your organization will find the most suitable person for the job.
It’s helpful to know not only whom you are looking for but where they are spending their time and how they prefer to consume information. All our searches at AEBetancourt begin by creating a candidate profile and scorecard to ensure our efforts are focused on finding the right individuals to match the position needs. This includes noting key characteristics, goals, challenges, and plans of your ideal candidates.
This is critical to marketing the available position so you understand the language and terminology your ideal candidates use, what platforms they frequent, and the formats they most prefer. Sharing a new opportunity in a video placed on TikTok is going to attract a very different candidate than a written opportunity on LinkedIn. Likewise, the wrong tone and placement can also mean, missing out on opportunities to connect with your next perfect-fit hire.
Consider your reputation
Your brand reputation is critical to your recruitment efforts. Your reputation is a combination of how your organization is perceived, interacted with, and the overall experiences that people have with your organization. Organizations with positive brand reputations are seen as credible, trustworthy, and desirable — and this goes for customers and even prospective employees. Customers will seek out brands they can trust and rely on, and so will job seekers.
When strategizing your recruitment marketing efforts, consider your brand reputation and leverage it to attract and retain top talent. For job candidates, a positive brand reputation is one indicator that they will have a positive candidate experience — which can be crucial to recruitment success.
Develop your Employee Value Proposition (EVP)
The Society of HR Management (SHRM) defines an Employee Value Proposition as “a strategic statement that defines how a company wants to be perceived by its employees.” An EVP establishes credibility with candidates and differentiates your company brand to attract top talent. In other words, it provides a reason why a person would leave their current role to work for your company.
To attract the interest of desirable applicants, employers should strive to accurately and effectively communicate not only what it’s like to work for your organization, but also what personal intrinsic value a new hire will gain. Lou Adler, in his book, The Essential Guide for Hiring and Getting Hired, shares that most people are not looking for more experience when considering a job or career change. Rather they desire opportunities to make an impact by doing something they find personally rewarding.
For individuals in healthcare or service industries, the reward is in helping others. They are seeking opportunities to share their knowledge, experience, and compassion. For someone in a technical field, that “why” is about uncovering new ways to apply their expertise along with opportunities to gain new skills. And for people in leadership positions, that personal value is derived from the prospect of impacting future business growth.
Writing a job posting
Once you have alignment on who your target audience is, the messaging you need to reach them, your reputation, and EVP, it is time to put it together into a job posting that will attract the right talent to fill your open position. A job posting is akin to an advertisement and often serves as one of the first impressions of your organization — and first impressions are important to recruitment efforts.
This means your job postings need to be much more than just a list of must-haves. Highlight what makes your company unique, whether that is your mission, core values, work environment, or social responsibility programs. And share what your ideal candidate stands to gain with the available position.
Creative Recruitment Marketing Ideas Anyone Can Use
Once you have a clear picture of whom you’re talking to and the important elements you need to share, it’s time to focus on how you are going to take the conversation to them. For this post, we’re going to detail four primary communication vehicles, but know there are plenty more options than these.
Posting open positions on a job board is probably the most obvious communication vehicle. A job board provides your organization with a constant online presence to a large audience. Whether it’s LinkedIn, Indeed, or Zip Recruiter, potential candidates will see your company name and that you are growing. With a well-written job posting, you can share details about the open position alongside details about what makes your organization unique.
Job boards allow for a 24/7 marketing presence for your brand, which is great, but they can have drawbacks. One downside is there is no control over who applies for posted positions and most of the candidates who apply will be active candidates looking for a change. It’s also important to remember that a job board is just that — a place to post your openings and collect applications. Job boards can be utilized to boost your reach and brand recognition, but they should not be the end-all-be-all for your recruitment marketing efforts or your organization’s communication with potential candidates.
Social media channels can be a cost-effective way for savvy employers to expand their talent pool. LinkedIn is perhaps the most thought-of platform for sharing career opportunities and searching for quality talent, but it’s not the only social site that can be useful. Here too, think beyond just the job posting. It’s also about positioning your organization as an employer of choice with the talent you most want to hire.
This means that Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram are additional places to build up your brand and generate awareness around career opportunities at your organization. Beyond posts for available positions, feature stories that highlight your culture and include visual content of workplace activities and events.
An often overlooked communication vehicle is your website. It should be top of mind. Not only is it free of any space or character limitations that social media may have, but prospective candidates also have complete access to learn more about your organization.
There are a couple of important points to mention at this point. First, your website shares timely and relevant information to present your company in the best possible light. Second, there is an easy and convenient way for candidates to apply, with someone monitoring that email for incoming applications. If you have both of those items covered, and it fits within your larger marketing strategy, your website should be one of the primary methods of communicating new opportunities and who you are as an organization.
Think about how many email communications your organization sends to outside contacts on any given day. Now factor in those occasional email sends like newsletters, event invitations, invoices, and various reminder notices. Your emails create an ideal avenue for creative recruitment marketing.
How you share the information can be as varied as the email messages themselves. In a monthly newsletter, you could provide specific job opening details and a link to apply directly. Invoices could include a simple sentence, hyperlinked to your website or LinkedIn jobs page. Many business professionals are also realizing the incredible value of their email signatures. From the basic “we’re hiring” to something more detailed, these phrases too can link back to more information and your application process.
Use your referral sources
Today, sales professionals often rely on a solid network of contacts to source and close new business. Recruitment marketing can take a page from that same playbook. If your network of referral sources can deliver new business opportunities, it can likely bring in new talent as well.
Don’t ignore the biggest piece of your referral network — your employees! Who better to integrate into your recruitment marketing efforts than a current group of people who already know and love you? Don’t underestimate the powerful influence of one friend on another sharing opportunities that have already benefited them both personally and professionally.
Your Organization’s Recruitment Marketing Strategy and Hiring Success
Recruiting adds a lot to an already-busy hiring manager or business leader’s plate. That’s why a solid recruitment marketing strategy makes all the difference. Knowing your audience, crafting your message, and taking the conversation to your prime candidates are proven marketing techniques that can help you enjoy more positive hiring outcomes.
Do you have questions about your talent acquisition processes? Access our resource on the recruitment process for more information and guidance.