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At first glance, recruitment and marketing might not appear to have much in common. However, just as traditional marketing is all about connecting your brand with the right people using the right messages, successful recruiting is about attracting the right candidates for the right role.

It’s no secret that recruitment has changed substantially in recent years. Thanks to advances in technology and the rise of social media, it’s no longer enough to post an opening on a job board and wait for the applications to roll in. By using marketing strategies to find, attract, engage, and nurture talent before they apply for a job, however, you can dramatically increase your chances of finding top talent.

So what are the elements of recruitment marketing and how do they work?

Your Brand Is Important

An individual’s perception of your company and brand doesn’t just matter when you’re trying to sell them something. It also matters when you’re trying to hire them, which is why you need to position yourself as an employer of choice.

Job candidates behave very much like consumers these days. Their impression of your organization as a workplace will be influenced by your brand voice, website, and advertising, what they have heard from friends and family, and what they have read on social media.

That’s why you need to not only make them aware of your company as a potential employer, but as a very attractive one. Good ways to do this are by showcasing what you would be like to work for, by, for example, taking part in career fairs and presenting to schools and colleges or holding open houses. Activities like these can be very effective at helping create a positive first impression with potential candidates.

Targeting Talent

When it comes to today’s job market, candidates are in the driver’s seat. Instead of being reactive and waiting for the right person to apply, recruiters need to be proactive and seek out the best places and methods to attract lots of good candidates. Using marketing techniques, recruiters can engage with potential talent and entice them to apply for current or future roles.

Just as the Internet, social media, online reviews, and mobile devices have changed the way consumers shop for goods and services, they have also changed the way candidates go about searching for jobs. This means recruiters need to use a variety of platforms and tactics to reach candidates, including targeting talent networks and communities, establishing employee referral programs, posting on job boards, career sites, and social media, as well as using SEO and mobile recruiting and advertising.

If you’re only using one or two channels to reach potential candidates, chances are a lot of them won’t ever hear about your open position.

Putting Talent in the Pipeline

While traditional recruitment is focused on the immediate need to fill a role, recruitment marketing plans for the future. Not only do using marketing techniques increase the talent pool applying for a specific job, they help companies put potential candidates for other roles into a pipeline.

The idea is to create a pool of talent for every kind of role you might have available in the future. With candidate relationship management, you want to build relationships with potential hires by not only sending them job openings, but also useful information, personalized content, and interesting news.

That’s because sometimes talented people aren’t actively looking for a new job, but rather are more or less just window-shopping. Other times a person may not be a good fit for the current role you’re looking to fill, but could be a great option for another one further down the track. By nurturing them and communicating with them, you are creating a valuable resource that you can tap into whenever you have an opening.

Refining the Process

The great thing about recruitment marketing is that you can establish which strategies work the best for your organization. You can do so by measuring the number of site visits and click throughs as well as how many conversions you’ve achieved and how. By analyzing the data, you can make more informed decisions about how to allocate your budget.

The bottom line is that by applying marketing principles to recruiting, you have a far greater chance of attracting talent you would never have reached otherwise, and you can do it more quickly and effectively.

How does your business seek and attract the best candidates for new roles?

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