It's common knowledge that a successful brand strategy is integral to an organization's commercial success. Branding is used to attract and retain a solid customer base, and in the digital age building a striking brand and promoting it online and across social media platforms has become a vital marketing strategy.
Fewer employers may realize, however, that a stellar brand strategy should also be developed and implemented for talent acquisition purposes. Indeed, long gone are the days when candidates had to exclusively woo an employer. Now, with an increasing number of options and more ease in terms of submitting applications, employers are having to work increasingly hard to attract top talent to their companies.
Branding can be understood as the process of establishing a reputation for your company: It involves developing a unique voice and outlining exactly what your company is, what it stands for, and why it's the best in its space. Of course anyone can build a brand. The question is, what makes a strong employer brand strategy?
If your human resources department is looking to build a new employer brand strategy or improve a current one, check out the handy guide of tips below:
1. Keep the conversation engaging and relatable
It goes without saying that you should be promoting your company and career opportunities online – both on your company website and across social media. Try to build a presence on as many social platforms as you can, while keeping in mind that Twitter and Facebook are perhaps the most essential. Building a brand involves more than opening an account, however. It doesn't pay to simply post about new job opportunities and not much else. It's important to develop a unique and engaging voice that can grab the attention of top talent.
Typically, an engaging post requires language that is jargon free and relatable, Glassdoor explained. Work to humanize your brand voice. For example, many companies will now employ social media staff to actively engage with customers and job seekers, and the most noteworthy and shared posts tend to be those that strike a casual tone and employ some humor. In other words, don't make it too dry! Ask yourself – "would I click on this post in my spare time?" If the answer is no, then you have some work to do.
2. Share content
Whether it's your own unique content, or interesting work from others, sharing content online, such as articles and infographics, can give candidates a unique insight into the kinds of ideas and values that your organization prioritizes, LinkedIn explained. Content is also a great way to stay on job-seeker's radars. By routinely sharing content, you're ensuring that your brand and logo are seen frequently on their social media feeds, which in turn increases the likelihood that they'll be drawn in and check out your careers page.
3. Keep things consistent
Branding inconsistency is more of a notable problem for larger corporations, with multiple departments and hiring teams, but it can affect any company. Brand inconsistency – a disagreement in terms of the brand's overall vision and message – can be confusing for job seekers and will likely hinder your efforts to attract top talent. Entrepreneur advised that the most effective way to deal with inconsistency is to assemble a team of marketing experts to conduct research and build a uniform brand from the findings.
4. Use the voice of your employees
Business2Community explained that a vast number of corporations actually find their best candidates via the process of employee referrals. That's why it's a great idea to firstly implement a referral program if you haven't already, and secondly encourage your staff to promote the virtues of the company as widely as they can. This can involve talking to friends and posting on social media. It's also a great idea to use the voices of your staff members on your careers page. Request that they write testimonials about their daily life with your company, or even create short videos in which they are interviewed about their favorite aspects of their jobs.
5. Create a killer careers page
Once interested candidates are is on your homepage the first place they're going to want to look is the careers page. And while a vast majority of organizations will indeed have a careers page, not every site will be truly effective at engaging audiences. Your careers page should be treated as the hub for your employer brand. Put another way, this is prime real estate on which to promote your company values, goals and culture. Consider incorporating testimonials, videos and facts in an engaging way. For example, employ plenty of imagery and concise and compelling content. Also, be sure that your "call to action" is clear and visible, Recruitee explained. Candidates should be able to easily access the link or links that will take them to the application forms, and the most surefire way to do this is by developing a bold link that says "apply here" or "apply now."
"67% of organizations recruit outside agencies to build their brand strategy."
6. Consult with experts
Of course, if you want an employer brand strategy like no other, consider enlisting the services of a marketing or human resources consulting firm, such as Global HR Research, that can work alongside you and your team to develop the most effective strategy possible. According to Entrepreneur, reporting on a survey conducted by Brandemix, a majority of organizations – up to 67 percent – recruit outside experts to develop their employer brand strategy, indicating that it is typically a successful strategy.
7. Assess efficacy
As Business2Community noted, there isn't a definitive end in sight when it comes to building your employer brand strategy. In other words, it should be treated as a constant process of monitoring what is working, what isn't and seeking improvements. Use data-based metrics to monitor interest in your careers page and open positions to truly determine if your employer brand strategy is making waves.
Hiring is the most important thing you do. Trust it to Global HR Research. Find out more by calling 1-800-790-1205 or visiting the GHRR website today.