BridgeThe typical job description for a recruiter includes evaluating candidates, building applicant sources, arranging interviews, managing employee relocations, and many other tasks and responsibilities.

While “marketing experience” may not often make it to the list of required qualifications, the ability to sell is an unwritten “must have” when it comes to recruiting — especially in today’s talent climate.

Marketing skills matter now more than ever — not just for marketers, but for recruiting professionals as well.

What Are You Selling?

The competition for the best and brightest talent is not simply a matter of identifying exceptional candidates. It’s also a matter of attracting these candidates to your company over the field of competitors. The key to doing this? Defining your recruiting strategies within the context of your comprehensive brand-building strategies.

Today’s job seekers — particularly the highly sought-after millennials — are looking for more than just high salaries. They want to truly understand a company’s mission and purpose before they join. They want to be a part of the company’s transformational journey.

Proactive recruiters don’t just present job opportunities; instead, they create engaging stories, rich candidate experiences, and irresistible missions.

In short: If you want to engage potential employees, you have to treat them like customers.  You’re selling the company and role to them — don’t forget that.

Building a compelling employer brand takes more than just smart advertising. A company needs to tell a compelling story that makes candidates want work for them.

Citrix, for example, uses an engaging story format to tell its story, to talk about its culture, and to define what makes the company different from competitors. Oracle uses employee testimonials effectively to connect with potential employees and to describe the company’s culture. DaVita uses an emotionally driven approach to highlight its mission and purpose and engage with potential candidates.

Who Are Your Target Customers, and How Do You Reach Them?

LadybugToday, recruiters have access to unprecedented amounts of information about candidates, as well as more channels through which to communicate with them. But while the potential to reach job seekers is more powerful than ever thanks to social media, we shouldn’t mistake quantity for quality.

A one-size-fits-all approach may generate massive responses, but how many of those responses are from candidates who are relevant to the specifics of a job description and your company culture? A targeted approach not only trims time and effort, but also increases the chances that your search will produce meaningful results.

Just as marketers create social media strategies to appeal to certain demographics, so must recruiters use social media to narrow down their own searches.

Success with social media recruitment, however, relies on delivering a clear, consistent message. Why? Because 62 percent of job applicants check out prospective companies via social media to determine brand authenticity.

Made the Hire? You’re Not Done Yet

Consumer experience analytics help marketers leverage information into actionable insights. Recruiters have the same opportunity, but only if they follow through.

Research shows that, while candidates rely on comprehensive recruitment experiences to help them make decisions about accepting or declining a job offer, a mere 15 percent of job seekers feel that companies are responsive during the full hiring cycle.

When evaluating the success or failure of their searches, recruiters should take the same “consumer experience” approach that many marketers do. Soliciting feedback from both non-hires and new hires can help recruiters improve their methods and the messages they convey.

Examples of some effective ways for recruiters to gather feedback from all sorts of candidates include surveys, informal meetings, anonymous feedback on Glassdoor, and so on.

While recruiters may not always think of themselves as marketers, the fact is that the two share a common agenda: Selling a product to today’s exceptionally educated and demanding consumers. It just so happens that a recruiter’s product is a job.

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