Recruiters, how often have you heard one of these lines:
“Sorry, but I’m really not interested.”
“No interest. Please refrain from contacting me in the future.”
“DO NOT CONTACT ME AGAIN.”
Even in the best of times, recruiters will deal with rejection from clients and candidates alike. No matter how well you craft that pitch or write that email, you’re going to hear the sucker-punch of “no” more often than the sweet sound of “yes.”
But what if you could avoid the cold-calling? What if you could reverse the process so that your ideal candidates and clients would start coming to you instead? What if you had so much business you were the one turning people away?
Content marketing may be just what you’re looking for.
What Is Content Marketing?
Content marketing is the act of building an audience around your service by producing informational materials like blog posts, podcasts, videos, eBooks, and just about anything else you can think of. The key to content marketing is providing relevant information to your ideal customers in formats your ideal customers will want to consume.
The goal of content marketing is to build up an audience for your content over time. As you build up that audience, some of the people who read your material will become interested in your services. They’ll subscribe to your weekly blog posts. They’ll read through your site. They’ll start asking you questions about how your methods work and what you could do for them in particular.
As simple as that, you’ve got interested prospects coming your way.
Good content marketing has five steps:
- Produce great content.
- Promote your content.
- Build your audience.
- Start conversations with prospects and candidates.
- Repeat steps 1-4 until you have to start turning folks away.
So, how do you put content marketing to work as a recruiter?
Content for Prospects
To make content your prospects will value, start by talking to those prospects about their pain points. When you produce content that speaks to your prospects’ pain, you show you understand where they’re coming from. When you produce content that shows your prospects how to solve their problems, you prove you’re worth listening to. If you’re worth listening to, you’re worth reaching out to.
Your ideal prospect is probably having trouble with the hiring process, which means they’ll be interested in information about streamlining the process. If you write content about how to streamline the interview process or vet the right candidates, you’ll attract readers who want to know about those things.
Now, I know what you’re thinking: If I give all this information to my audience, won’t they just take it and leave me out in the cold?
Sure, some will – but those are people who were never going to hire a recruiter anyway. Those readers don’t matter. The ones who matter are the ones who see the value of what you could do for them.
Content for Candidates
With candidates, the situation is pretty much the same: Speak to their pain and show them how to solve their problems.
What are job seekers worried about? They’re worried about interviews. They’re worried about salary negotiations. They’re worried about whether or not they should leave their current jobs.
Write excellent, even-handed content that doesn’t pressure job seekers in any way, and you’ll be able to appeal to their interests. If you specialize in one particular industry or type of candidate, tailor your message specifically to that ideal candidate’s situation.
People value the feeling of being spoken to directly. When you speak directly to someone, you let them know you’ve really seen them as a human being. You show them you care enough about them to understand at least part of who they are. We’re all a little hungry to be noticed in that way.
With good content marketing, you give your audience the information they’re seeking. With great content marketing, you give your audience the little extra that proves you see them and understand.
That’s when they’ll start a conversation with you.
Geofrey Crow is a freelance copywriter who specializes in helping recruiting agencies build relationships with clients and candidates.