Talent acquisition strategy is changing, requiring new skills to help attract consumer-minded candidates. This change currently underway in recruiting is similar to how the marketing function has evolved over the past 10 years.
Marketing has largely turned “inbound” in the last decade―customers are finding their own paths to products and services versus companies using ads to disruptively get in front of potential customers. Inbound marketing has been the most successful marketing method introduced in recent years for attracting sales-ready customers. Inbound marketing works because companies are creating value for prospective customers, which converts them into loyal buyers and long-term advocates.
Just take a look at these quick stats to gauge how inbound marketing efforts are increasing success for organizations:
To adopt these new principles of inbound marketing, marketing teams have transformed and expanded, adding new positions like content strategist and digital marketer, as well as expertise in social media, SEO and demand/lead generation. The modern marketing team has key roles with specific knowledge in the efforts that will attract more interested prospects through broader channels, and more importantly, will nurture them into qualified leads to deliver to sales.
What can recruiters learn from this marketing transformation?
How Customer Marketing Inspires Recruitment Marketing
Let’s do some quick word replacement:
Talent acquisition teams will need to transform and expand, adding new positions like content strategist and digital marketer, as well as expertise in social media, SEO and demand generation. The modern talent acquisition team has key roles with specific knowledge in the efforts that will attract more interested candidates through broader channels, and more importantly, will nurture them into qualified applicants to deliver to recruiters.
Sounds pretty spot on, doesn’t it? Recruiting and marketing are being blended into recruitment marketing, in which talent acquisition teams use current marketing tactics like content, email, social media, mobile, automation, etc. to engage candidates through more than just jobs. The process used to be: post a job to Monster and/or Careerbuilder and get candidates. It’s not that easy, or qualified, anymore. Because, let’s face it: No one prefers just a job. Modern candidates want culture, inspiration, incentive, camaraderie and meaning. And they want it to come to them through the channels they use most.
Who Serves These Roles on Your Team?
The recruiting function of your team primarily serves a “sales” function, the bottom-of-the-funnel: identifying the best candidates and then selling them on the company, the hiring manager, etc.
The recruitment marketing function of your team serves a “marketing” function, the top-of-the-funnel: attracting, engaging and nurturing new candidates until they are qualified to convert at the best time for them and your organization.
But both the recruiting (sales) and recruitment marketing (marketing) functions are essential in a modern recruiting organization, providing different skillsets for different stages of the candidate journey.
Recruitment marketing is where the new skillsets are necessary, and emerging, in talent acquisition, helping to proactively provide meaning and value through design, messaging and experience to impact the best candidates to apply. Who on your team owns the vision for your career site and its messaging? Who is the point-person for all landing page and conversion knowledge? If you need a blog post to attract candidates with your thought leadership, who will plan and execute it, and who will manage the long-term content calendar?
Reality check: Not every talent acquisition organization has the budget to add these positions to the team. And while it may be in the long-term plan, there is a way to get started today without hiring new people by cultivating these skills within your current team. The right technology, like a Recruitment Marketing Platform, can enable your current team to start now, while also introducing them to some of the skills and tactics that will improve their inbound marketing knowledge.
Here are 5 essential roles your modern recruiting organization should have:
Employer Brand Manager
Why You Need This Role:
You can’t truly attract loyal customers without a solid, differentiated brand. Where would Coke be without red and white, happiness and polar bears? (They might be RC.) Candidates, and eventually employees, feel the same about being part of something unique and strong, something they can connect with. You need a dedicated employer brand manager to lead and answer:
Your employer brand is bigger than your career site. It is the foundation for your internal brand (how your employees view and communicate the culture of the organization), as well as for your external brand (how the candidates you want to attract see your organization).
Why You Need This Role:
Brands have already turned into publishers to provide education and entertainment, and recruiting organizations are next in line. Content marketing is crucial to inbound marketing―it is how your brand and message are searched, found and consumed by the quality candidates you’re trying to attract. Between blog posts, white papers, LinkedIn Pulse, videos, infographics, studies and more, candidates are looking to prospective employers for:
It comes down to providing value to your target audience. Content needs a strategy, timelines, deliverables, assignments; it needs a sole owner who understands how to execute different types of content for different candidates in different stages of their career search. The desire and necessity for career-focused content is imperative to your talent acquisition strategy. The targeted content and messaging you require likely cannot be pulled from Marketing resources; it’s also too strategically important to produce ad hoc.
Social Media Coordinator
Why You Need This Role:
This may be a role you have covered, but it’s probably time to step up your social recruiting game. According to a Jobcast survey, 94% of companies use social for recruiting, and 73% say they have successfully hired an employee from social media. But do you have a comprehensive strategy behind social recruiting? A dedicated social media coordinator or a team member that owns this channel will map out a communication strategy per each social network that candidates may be using, as well as the social personas of different demographics. He/she will have eyes on trends, inbox/direct messages, questions and brand sentiment around the clock. The biggest reasons you need this role is for constant communication to candidates―and measuring its success. You should be answering:
And that’s just a start. You can really dive deep by adding stronger social publishing and analytics tools and using Google Analytics for campaign tracking per social source. Even further, Recruitment Marketing Platforms track social analytics on a larger scale, in conjunction with all of your other talent acquisition efforts.
Why You Need This Role:
While entertaining social media, engaging content and a compelling employer brand will help you attract candidates, the digital marketer will help you convert more candidates once they get to your career site, talent network forms and landing pages. They experiment and are never satisfied, using A/B testing to track how SEO, design and CTAs affect conversion. And once converted, the digital marketer owns all communication that will nurture candidates, with the goal of getting them to apply for the right job for both them and the company. You need to be able to find the quality and potential in the masses. Adding a digital marketer who fully understands the candidate lifecycle and how to personalize their communication through each touch point will improve the quality of candidates who apply.
Recruitment Marketing Manager
Why You Need This Role:
With an integrated strategy, there has to be an “integration” mindset across all of your team members. The recruitment marketing manager is the integrator. This person understands how individual tactics play a bigger role in quality demand generation and is responsible for the results and cost-effectiveness of each strategy. Everything he/she does in thinking and execution is to attract more qualified candidates, drive them through the pipeline and create more quality relationships through email, content, campaigns, social and more. On top of that, the recruitment marketing manager knows how to measure and affect this quality:
Whether a recruitment marketing manager, or the champion on your team for recruitment marketing, this role serves as a check and balance for all your efforts and will consistently improve your program through actionable data.
Take a look at your current team. Certainly, some of them are already using and building some of these skills. So you can start transforming your team today through developing more of these skills, making a key hire with recruitment marketing knowledge―or even adding technology like a Recruitment Marketing platform to make the implementation and processes simple. Developing your strategy for recruitment marketing and understanding where your team is now and the positions you need long-term will help turn your current recruiting team into a recruitment marketing powerhouse.