We’ve just come away from our latest Recruitment Network huddle, a members meeting, in a fantastic venue, filled to the brim with enthusiastic recruitment business leaders and experts alike, all sharing ideas and strengthening the power of the network. At the start of 2018 we took a good look at the future of our industry and some of the biggest trends to come this year too.

So, I write this article pumped full of great ideas and thoughts about how we as recruiters can leverage the power of social to make a true difference to our efforts. With over 3 billion active users on social daily it’s a fantastic opportunity, not only find quality leads and candidates, but also a platform to promote your brand as well as your culture and values.

Don’t get us wrong, there are a lot of people on social media; but actually getting their attention is a whole different kettle of fish. There are millions of business all vying for the attention of those 3 million users, so it’s up to us as marketers and business owners to be strategic to surgically slice through that noise and catch some attention.

The Legacy Platforms and the new kids on the block

Over here, at TRN, we’re a fan of Gary Vaynerchuck, who is a internet entrepreneur who’s lived and breathed social ever since you could monetise the internet. He’s invested in hundreds of platforms including Twitter and Uber, and although he’s won a lot, he has also lost a lot too. He’s certainly got a fair amount of skin in the game and he’s a veritable treasure trove of social wisdom, he’s worth checking out.

Gary talks about a lot, but two things we’re going to touch on briefly will be, firstly selecting legacy platforms or new platforms, then secondly we’re going to look at his jab, jab right hook methodology.

So, what’s a legacy platform? These are the platforms you’re using every day the big boys on the block, who aren’t going anywhere anytime soon. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn – now although these platforms are brimming with users, you’re also competing heavily for attention. So when it comes to buying that attention, you’re paying a premium, whether that’s through ad spending or catching someones attention organically. So take any decision on a legacy platform with a pinch of salt, as it’s going to be a harder journey, but if done right (clever, tactical, interesting, story-driven) you’re going to win big.

Gary always preaches the importance of testing out new platforms, the new kids on the blocks. If you want to be a true advocate of social then you need to keep you ear to the ground, looking out for some of the lesser known platforms, where the stakes are higher, but the return can be great.

A caveat to this though is that you need to be aware of where your audience is, it’s all well and good setting up an account to every new hip social platform that’s making the rounds, but you’re going to struggle to find pharma clients on a platforms that is designed around teenagers showing off their singing skills. Consult that buyer persona you set up from our first article in the series, and make wise decisions on where you know your target audience will be hanging out.  

We’ll come to Gary’s second point later on in the post, but next we’re going to look at the important reasons to be on social as a recruitment business.

Why should agencies be worrying about Social?

It’s kind of obvious, isn’t it? Your competitors are doing it already, some have it sussed, some are finding their feet, but no matter what, they’re honing their craft, while you’re sitting here thinking whether it’s worth the effort.

Social is a gateway to thousands of potential clients and candidates, if done right recruiters can boast a huge amount of inbound leads from the power of leveraging social right. But, social also gives you a soapbox to promote your values and culture improving your brand’s visibility and reputation. Social is powerful and shouldn’t be ignored.

Social needs to be more than posting job openings. Our top 6 tips to nailing social.

Tip 1: Creative job ads that stand out from the competition

Obviously, you need to post some job ads and inbound leads can be one of the most powerful ways of filling job positions. But, your timeline shouldn’t be exclusively filled with a barrage of your job openings. This kind of attitude and laziness can be toxic and extremely damaging to your social media. Having a constant stream of social updates that provide no inherent value to your audience is a sure way to, not only lose followers, but will also lead to people subconsciously switching off to your feed and posts.

This is where it’s vital to get creative with your job postings. This is something that comes up time and and time again with our expert speakers who talk at our huddles. We, as Recruiters, sell experiences, locations, life changing opportunities and social media is a platform in which a smart recruiter can show-off their ingenuity, give their clients to think “That’s why I use a Recruiter”. Check out this fantastic list of creative ways to use job ads from LinkedIn.

Try mixing up your job ads, altering your mind-set now and trying to achieve a new perspective on your job ads will make a huge difference we guarantee it, and what’s better the more you do it the better you’ll get out of it. Whether it’s creative graphics, a quick but effective piece of video content or a compelling piece of storytelling. Treating your job ads with a bit of love and respect will give you that essential edge.

Starbucks among many others offer creative ways to get people interested in a career with them, by offering events.

Tip 2: Leverage the power of talent communities..

A massive shoutout to Hung Lee for bringing this to all our members’ attention at our Winter huddle, this is something that’s going to rise in prevalence in the coming years, and a trend which recruiters need to cultivate and learn. So, what am I talking about here?

Closed online communities. When the web grows into a noisy place, full of marketers screaming and vying for attention and your average Twitter or Facebook feed is being filled with more and more personal content (Especially since Facebook’s news algorithm change), it’s becoming more and more popular for people with a common interest to turn to exclusive online forums where they can talk about their interests. Reddit, is somewhere that nails this with their subreddits, but there are others on the block such as HackerNews for coders, Inbound.org for marketers there’s plenty out there and more being made everyday.

Inbound.org closed community dashboard preview

Smart recruiters will dedicate time to sniffing out these talent communities, leveraging the power of online cliques filled to the brim with talent and job seekers, this kind of recruitment will be at the forefront of effective social recruiting. And if you’re struggling to find something that relates to your market, why don’t you create one yourself? It could be a huge project that requires some specialist web developers, or even a simple WhatsApp or Slack group. As long as you follow the rules of modern marketing and create inherent value with a platform for people to share, ask and give advice then you could see yourself having the pick of thousands of candidates.

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Tip 3: Establish yourself as an industry thought leader as well as your consultants

One of the best parts of social media is that you’ve got yourself a fantastic platform where you can create a persona about yourself (as well as your consultants). If done correctly you can establish yourself as an expert in whatever you want. As recruiters the gravitas you’ll wield when it comes to talking to candidates and convincing clients on your service will be weighty if you appear to be an expert in your field. Now this could be both the market you recruit as well as recruitment itself.

It’s always good to pay some attention to the visual identity of your own business and profile as well as that of your consultants/team. Conducting an audit of all your consultants LinkedIn profiles can uncover any inconsistencies with their job copy, as well as their profile photos. We recommend you get some high-quality profile photographs taken of your team, keeping a nice level of consistency across the board adds an air of professionalism.

Now you’ve got a cohesive branded team across the board, how do we go about increasing your reputation as a thought-leader? The power is in the content.. If you and your consultants are regularly sharing out relevant blog articles (they don’t need to be your own) you can start to establish yourself as someone with their finger on the pulse. Be smart about it, phrase your shared content with questions and calls-to-discussion, then get involved with the comments.

If your consultants are feeling particularly savvy in producing their own content and are signed onto the authority that comes with being a content author, then push them to produce LinkedIn articles (or even blog posts) if the content is good enough, they can use this in conversations with clients and connect with all the people that engage with the content.

Tip 4: Promote your brand as well as your company culture

Social doesn’t have to be all about hard-hitting thought provoking content, bringing a bit of fun and life to your feed is important, it humanises your business. If you’ve read any piece of content on attracting talent, one of the key drivers will be a great company culture, and I’m sure you’ve taken steps internally to make the office a bit more enjoyable for your employees, but are you showing off these little moments?

Think of things like a snapshot of your employees on their birthday, the team coming together for charitable or seasonal events or an outing to the local restaurant. I know you might find those people on facebook who update every micro moment of their lives annoying, but for business these little touches are a must! Create posts that help the viewer feel a genuine connection to the people of the business.

TRN member Niyaa People are one of our members who’re actively building a great employer brand online

Tip 5: You should be interacting and engaging with clients and thought leaders

Homework time: Sit down with your team and conduct an audit of all the industry thought-leaders and clients who are big on social. Engaging with some of the big hitters in your space is a sure way to piggyback off their followings and expose your company to the wider market.

Engagement can be done by sharing out their content, engaging on a consistent basis with their posts, tagging them in posts you think they’d enjoy and even give them a little mention in your blog articles. It’s all about sharing the love, use this as a way to not only cement your client relationships, but a technique to show you’re a socially engaged thought-leader hanging out with other industry thought-leaders.

Effective planning is the secret to social + our social media planning template

As we’ve explained in our previous articles in social, it’s important to plan effectively, it helps you keep consistent, make smarter decisions and then pivot and change according to your data. Social planning is a little bit more simple than a whole marketing plan, but your information and decision should pull from your marketing plans, with things such as your buyer personas and your content strategy.

If you’ve already had some existing social media accounts running for a while then you’re in luck, you’ve got a whole cache of fascinating social media statistics just sitting there waiting for you to have a look. It’s always important to consult your data before you decide to make any decisions, to see essential pieces of info such as: when people engage with you most, interests of your followers, what types of post get the most attention. But don’t just look and leave, this is something you should always come back to, as some data may change and adapt to your new followers.

It’s a good idea to sit down and take an audit of all the social channels you’re on and then also to think about the one’s you’re not on. Do a little bit of research and think about the kind of tone you want to take on each one, the type of post and content you push out on LinkedIn will be vastly different to that of Pinterest or Twitter. Making sure you have a working document where you can write notes about what’s working, what’s not and the type of company you want to look like on that particular social media is essential.

It’s now time to write a schedule for each social media, as we’ve said before one of the most important aspects of effective social media is consistency, sporadic posts whenever you remember it’s going to work against you. Combining the ideal times to post (Which you will have discovered in your analytic surfing) alongside the type of message you want to put out will make the whole process a lot more simple.

Social Media posting template for blog

We have attached here the template that we use for our social media. Having a clear spreadsheet showing when you need to post is a great way to keep on top of everything and remove the need for it to be at the front of your mind.

A side note: It’s also important to have the time to randomly post fun and engaging content, riding off the back of trending news, posting discussion provoking questions, sharing motivational quotes or just funny things you’ve seen in the day. A generic account with the same content repeated all day will work against you, it’s all about finding that fine line.

Gary’s second pearl of wisdom: Jab, Jab, Right Hook.

Gary’s fantastic book ‘Jab, jab, right hook’ is a must read for any aspiring social media marketers and although we could go further in depth on a lot of points, we’re going to cover the main premise which will help you change your mindset.

Gary argues that many brands are throwing too many right hooks, those big moves where you expect a customer to instantly buy your product, like his boxing analogy, if you’re not setting up your right hook with a few jabs it’s never going to land. It’s the same with social media, if you’re not setting up your viewers with a few jabs, that big right hook of a pitch will fail.

So what’s a jab? It really is any type of creative, light-hearted or value-adding content that helps not only promote the human side of your business but gives the viewer something they can consume without feeling like they are being sold too. It could be something funny happening in the office, an employees birthday celebration or perhaps some motivational quote or quick video, just something small to grab their attention.

Make sure you’re producing a couple of these to every big hook you throw and you’ll increase your chances of getting your audience’s attention.

These little jabs help humanise your brand, they help promote your office culture and even broadcast the values you and your team live by, so it is good for them to on your platforms frequently.

Top 5 tools for taking your social to the next level.

meetedgarMeetEdgar:

We love MeetEdgar, we promote it so much you’d think they were paying us! (they’re not by the way..) this nifty piece of software is so simple but incredibly effective. We found ourselves spending huge swathes of time every day scheduling social media content as we never like to let a blog go stale, there’s always someone out there who’ll want to read it.

MeetEdgar takes out the time of scheduling and posting by allowing you to build and store a catalogue of social media posts in libraries. You then fill in your schedule, picking slots for the app to post to your social media profiles from your individual libraries. MeetEdgar will recycle through the library posts, posting at the desired time, forever! If your library is big enough, you can avoid it looking like you’re repeating yourself.

A little bit confused, let’s give you an example.

Step 1: Fill up a MeetEdgar library with tweets that advertise the different articles on your blog.

Step 2: You decide you want to share the blog article library every day at 10am and 3pm on Twitter.

Result: MeetEdgar will pick a tweet from the blog article library and post it out on your twitter profile at 10am and 3pm, minimal work you breath some much needed life into your old content and drive traffic to your website.

Find out more here

hootsuite logoHootsuite:

Hootsuite is used by us every single day and is a great programme to schedule all your social media posts throughout the day. Hootsuite is free to use and can be very powerful if used correctly, offering feeds of all your social media platforms. Hootsuite is best used on a weekly or daily basis to share out relevant industry content and promotion for your company.

Find out more here

FeedlyFeedly:

Feedly is a great tool which brings a bunch of blogs together in one easy to access place. Feedly allows you to add blogs to a feed so that can easily find industry relevant blog articles to share across your social platforms and keep up to speed with news in the industry. Feedly is free, with upgrade options available, so is a great tool to investigate and get set up.

Find out more here

mention toolMention:

Social media can be a noisy place. Mention helps you cut through the noise and traffic trends, keywords and phrases of your choosing. When it comes to recruitment it’s important to have something where people are looking for jobs, or changes in career. Mention offers you the technology to do this with ease.

Find out more here

analytics bannerAnalytics:

As we’ve mentioned Analytics are vital to make informed decisions when it comes to your marketing, knowing when the best time to post or what type of content gets the best response is vital to tweaking your social channel to max performance.

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