I was recently asked for tips on the best way to get started in social recruiting and using social media to promote new career opportunities and how to find talent that might be hiding in plain sight on social media channels. Oh, and how do you do it if your company doesn’t have a social media presence at all, just yet?
Tips on Getting Started With Social Recruiting
Research your hashtags and use your key words. Many platforms (Twitter, Google+, etc) allow users to search for relevant content by hashtag so doing some quick research around what hashtags will attract the audience you are looking for can go a long way. For example, even if you have close to zero followers on Twitter there is a #HireFriday hashtag that is used by many on Twitter to promote and watch for career opportunities – including that hashtag in you post will gain visibility directly with the people looking for job opportunities on Twitter. Also include hashtags or keywords around the job requirements, for example if you need to fill the position locally include your city name as a hashtag, now anyone monitoring local news will also have it pop up in their feed.
Secondly, approach the relevant influencers in the industry. Even if your business or you yourself are not big into social media, chances are you can easily find the industry influencers by doing a few quick searches and see who pops up the most for talking about or being quoted on in the industry, who is listed the most on Twitter or who has the most followers and likes – with engagement to back it up. Introduce yourself then forward them the post link or details directly with a message along the lines of “We don’t have a huge following but I noticed that you do and mostly related to [our industry] and thought this position might be of interest to someone in your community.” They may or may not share it but it doesn’t hurt to build relationships with the top 10-20 influencers in your industry if you are starting out fresh in social media anyways. If it is a local posting, look for people that are influential regionally but not necessarily in your industry – you never know who is in their community and within their reach.
You can include 2-3 hashtags or keywords in your posting but also leave room to include a request to reshare. Posts that have a call to action to reshare are more likely to be passed on on all channels and since you have a potentially small audience, you want to get as much traction as you can!
Next look for the people looking for a career. Join relevant LinkedIn and Facebook groups and Google+ communities and see who might be interested in the position. Post the details and chat with the group members to get a feel for if it is the right group of people or not. (Who knows, you might attract someone that wasn’t originally looking for an opportunity but that is a perfect fit!)
All this time you should be polishing your business profiles and following all of the relevant people you come across to help kick your social campaign off and help you be better prepared for future engagement! Make sure your business name and website link are prominent and that your description or bio is relevant, interesting and also includes keywords that people might search for. If you plan on using the channels for general business going forward make that clear, if it is just for recruiting say that in the profile – the right keywords will help draw in the right audience going forward.
We almost exclusively recruit through social media, since we are in the industry and we have an established following, so it is a little easier for us. We keep our position details posted at all times on our website with a note informing job seekers if we are actively recruiting or not, but invite everyone to connect with us at any time if they are interested in a career with ReSoMe. Then, when we are hiring, we Tweet them to let them know. This works nicely because it increases the visibility of the position on Twitter, for example, not just to the originally interested applicants but also others that might be interested as well. We require some not traditional elements be included in an application so people can show they really get social media. For example we have had people apply and start hashtag campaigns e.g. #PickBrit where the applicant (now one of our Engagement Specialists – hi Brit!) started a hashtag and had all of her followers post a tweet mentioning our business and a reason she would be a great hire including the hashtag. It definitely caught our attention!
Social Applications Help Applicants and Businesses
We have also had YouTube applications, Prezi applications, blog post applications, infographic resumes and Pinterest boards as resumes. Of course those are especially relevant in our industry but can showcase creativity, design, personality and so many other attributes relevant to other industries and postions. Plus, social recruiting and social applications help promote your business before the new recruit even gets set up on payroll! We think social media recruiting – as a focus or as an enhancement to your existing recruitment efforts – it is a smart move for savvy businesses and applicants alike. And regardless of you followers now, we all have to start somewhere.
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