Recruitment marketing is a concept that often comes up when we talk about employer brand and talent acquisition. It’s a process that involves applying marketing concepts to the world of recruitment, in an effort to attract more candidates. But there can be some hesitation around putting a recruitment marketing strategy together, especially for those without much marketing experience. With a little more analysis, however, it becomes clear that recruitment marketing can have a significant impact on a company’s hiring initiatives – even if it means exploring new territory.
The Difference Between Recruitment Marketing and Employer Branding
Employer branding and recruitment marketing are two terms that are often used interchangeably. But there are some nuanced differences between the two. While Betterteam describes the employer brand as “a company’s reputation as an employer and its value proposition, or what it offers to potential to employees,” Top Echelon defines recruitment marketing as “the strategy you use to find, attract, and engage with talent to increase your candidate pool.”
As you can see, the two concepts work hand-in-hand to help you find top talent for your recruitment efforts, but they do differ in their meaning. Employer branding is the reputation of your company when it comes to employment, and recruitment marketing is the strategy you use to find talent – using your employer brand as one method to attract candidates. The stronger your employer brand, the more effective your recruitment marketing initiatives may be.
Recruitment Marketing and Passive Candidates
Recruitment marketing can affect the number, and the quality, of candidates who apply to your job postings. It’s especially valuable for attracting passive candidates, people who would be a great fit for your company but who are already employed. Ideal has some pretty powerful stats on passive candidates:
- 79% of working professionals are passive candidates
- they’re 120% more likely to want to create a positive impact on the workforce
- they’re 33% more likely to want challenging work
When you put these numbers together, it creates a compelling case for attracting passive candidates through recruitment marketing techniques. The more effective your initiatives, and the stronger your employer brand, the more likely it is that your company will be an attractive option for the candidates you want to meet with, even if they’re already employed. That means more candidates for each open position, and more opportunities to find someone who truly is the perfect fit for the job.
This article from SmashFly might say it best: “People come for the brand, convert for the job and stay for the culture.” In other words, your recruitment marketing, employer branding, candidate experience, and employee engagement efforts need to work in tandem to create a consistent experience for candidates and employees. Each element relies on, and influences, the others, which means that taking steps to optimize each element will raise the bar overall. The whole is greater than the sum of its parts, as they say.
Get Marketing Involved
It can be a little overwhelming, especially for those without much marketing experience, to start looking at recruitment through a marketing lens. Luckily, you might already have some resources to help. This article from Avature suggests that recruitment marketing initiatives should be shared between HR and Marketing departments. And that makes a lot of sense: HR is involved in the management of all employees, whether they’re coming and going, and Marketing has the know-how to help craft and disseminate powerful messaging. By bridging the expertise that both departments offer, it’s possible to build a compelling story about your company and share that story in spaces that passive candidates might find it.
Consider some of the channels that Marketing uses to share their messaging. Social media and search engine results are often near the top of the list, and these are both channels that can be optimized for recruitment marketing as well. Your Marketing team might have some helpful insight that can direct where to start with this new approach to recruitment. Do they see high engagement on certain social media platforms, but low engagement on others? Are there particular keywords that you could use in your job postings to help with search engine rankings? How does HR’s version of the company story differ from Marketing’s version? These are all conversations you can have to help shed light on where your recruitment marketing efforts start.
Do your recruitment marketing efforts contribute to a positive candidate experience? Find out by trying the McQuaig Candidate Experience Grader!
Taking a new approach to attracting candidates can seem daunting, but the opportunities are surprisingly significant. Recruitment marketing is a method of capitalizing on your employer branding strategy to attract both active and passive candidates, which improves the likelihood that you’ll find someone who is a great fit for the role. And as those candidates continue to have good experiences with your company, your employer brand will continue to improve, which can have significant payoffs as you continue to explore more recruitment marketing opportunities.
It’s like these win-win situations are creating themselves!