Your Product is Your Workplace: Turning Traditional Marketing on its Head for Recruitment and Success
Traditional marketing strategies have always centered around a product or a service. What our businesses are selling is directly connected to how we market ourselves, how we define our business strategy, and how we want the outside world to see us. The most important goal for marketing has historically been the next big deal or partnership.
As the digital world expands, this needs to change. It’s a known issue that all businesses are experiencing a shortage of ‘Tech Talent’. Recruitment has become a global crisis, with millennials continually looking for the next exciting opportunity, and many less employees loyal to a particular company for more than a few years. According to recent data from Deloitte, 75% of the workforce are millennials, and 43% of these plan to leave their current jobs within two years. Just 28% have plans to stay beyond five years.
When it comes to technology positions, specifically software and R&D, this problem is exacerbated even further, especially in start-up capitals such as Tel Aviv or Silicon Valley. Recruiting the right talent, and keeping these skilled employees happy is directly impacting a company’s ability to stay relevant, lucrative, and future-focused. For the first time, recruitment in technology might well be more important than that next big deal.
The Social Influence
If we take a closer look at the lifecycle of recruitment and employee engagement, we can see how important and relevant social media has become, and how essential it is to launch a social media strategy that puts the employee needs front and center.
Application: Where do candidates search when they’re looking for a new opportunity? LinkedIn, Glassdoor, even Facebook and Instagram. Before applying to a position, they might search for mutual friends who have connections at the company to put in a good word.
Onboarding: Once a company has given the candidate an offer, it’s touch and go whether the person will say yes. This is where they might check out how the company describe themselves online, ascertaining whether there is a good cultural fit. How are you making sure that they sign on the bottom line?
Employment: Social media is the best place to see whether employees are actively involved in their work life, or whether they are just clocking in and out every day. Is there room to make an impact, do more than just sit at a desk? Are employees being acknowledged for their achievements? What is the narrative you want to tell about life at your company?
Exit: In some ways, this is even more important than onboarding. What will your staff say about you after they leave? When people see the career progression on LinkedIn or other social channels, will they see that there was no room for development at your organization, or will they see the growth that employees experienced before moving on to greater career milestones as a result?
Turning Employees into Brand Ambassadors
With social media and marketing so important at every stage, it’s no wonder that a poor social media strategy is resulting in employee churn, lack of talent and the inability to recruit for success.
Making a change means changing your focus. Think of your employees as your ambassadors, the people who will tell your narrative to the world, and will be seen at every stage of the employee lifecycle by candidates, interviewees, current employees and beyond. Speak to your existing employees, highlight what needs to change, or what you’re doing well. Then, create the values that will attract and retain the right people, and tell that story!
One great thing about this kind of marketing, is that it’s easy to measure whether you’re doing it right, unlike a lot of other marketing initiatives. If done correctly, you should be able to see a marked difference on the quality and success of recruitment and interview caliber, the amount of CVs that are coming through the door, and the visible reduction in decline rate and even employee churn.
5 Steps to Making it Happen
So, how do we do it? Here are five top tips that can help you start changing the way that you think:
- Combine your Marketing & HR initiatives: Start sending out social media messages that align with your HR goals. What is the ideal employee for your business, how do they speak, what are their values?
- Identify the Right Social Platforms: Where does your ideal candidate spend their time? This could be more formal platforms such as LinkedIn, or by following the relevant hashtags on Twitter. They could also be influenced by the right images on Instagram, or in a particular Facebook group.
- Content is for Life, Not Just for Recruitment: Content is an ongoing activity, and it can’t stop just because you’re not actively recruiting. Having a consistent brand and voice is important for legitimacy, and your content should continually speak your language. The right marketing agency can help you drill down to your core messages, through roundtables, focus groups and more, supporting you as you differentiate yourself from the competition and build a content strategy that presents you accurately to your target audience.
- Be Yourself! It can feel tempting to copy other successful brands, but your product works because it offers something unique. The same can be said of your culture. Dig deep and find the words that describe your own people, and don’t be afraid to build that core culture, even if you lose some people along the way.
- Keep your promises. There’s nothing that turns candidates and employees off as much as dishonesty. If you’re going to put out a brand message, make sure that you can be authentic. You want your employees to shout about your culture from the rooftops because they really believe in you, not because of incentives or expectations.
The right marketing strategy can turn your recruitment nightmare into a dream scenario, with a flow of talented, interested candidates who know what they’re signing up for, and are excited to join a culture that suits their needs. This results in invested brand ambassadors that work hard, share your values, and are excited to shout your messages far and wide.
Lack of Tech Talent? Not at your workplace.
Want to hear more about a targeted strategy to revitalize your own recruitment? Get in touch.