The following is an approximate transcript.
HEATHER: Hello and thank you for joining Episode 31 of Talent Connection, a podcast about connecting job seekers and employers, produced by Cachinko. My name is Heather Huhman, and I am the founder & president of Come Recommended, as well as the Career & Recruiting Advisor for Cachinko. I’m joined by my co-host, Tony Morrison.
TONY: Thank you and good morning Heather. I am Tony Morrison and I am the vice president of Cachinko. We are a technology company that develops job matching and career networking platforms. We offer a suite of online recruiting tools for recruiters and employers to find, attract, and engage candidates for their open positions.
HEATHER: Today’s episode is “How to Engage Candidates in Social Media.” Let’s get started, Tony “What social media platforms are used for recruiting?”
TONY: The three most popular social networking platforms used by recruiters are LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook. There are over 120 million users on LinkedIn in 170 industries and over 200 countries, Twitter has over 100 million users, and Facebook has over 750 million users now. All combined there are nearly a billion profiles on these three platforms.
Other popular social media platforms used for recruitment marketing include corporate and organizational blogs, YouTube, and other channels. The most effective channels are those that enable presentation of job marketing content, and the platforms that encourage interactions and communication about the content. Candidate interactions may come in the form of clicks to apply, following the company, or comments and reactions such as liking, retweeting, clicking a +1 for Google+, and any form of sharing with personal and professional networks.
HEATHER: How do companies and recruiters use social media to find candidates for their jobs?
TONY: According to a recent survey of over 800 persons, this survy was conducted by Jobvite conducted during May and June of this year, roughly 89% of US companies use or will use social media for recruiting.
LinkedIn is one of the most common, recruiting-focused social media platforms. According to the same study of the companies that recruit in social media, LinkedIn is used by almost 87% of those companies. Whereas LinkedIn started as a professional networking site, the site is really a job board now. Employers can post a job for approximately $200 per month. You can also upgrade to premium accounts as an employer or recruiter, which costs thousands of dollars per license each month. LinkedIn featured services like Talent Finder a al carte that allows searching candidates of public profiles on the platform. Additionally, recruiters can create their own group or groups to engage members for a specific purpose. The company can create a company page for job seekers to follow to learn about jobs and other information that is shared by the company.
Twitter is an effective microblogging tool also used by recruiters. Approximately 47% of the companies surveyed are using Twitter. It’s a major attraction for recruiters because it is very simple to post a job advertisement or information about an event. And since you only have 140 characters to get your point across, so you have to be really direct. An effective Tweet about a job could simply state the position, location, provide a link to apply, and maybe including a hashtag that will help to get noticed by job seekers searching that company, such as #company, or that particular type of job, #job, or use other hashtags such as #jobpost, #jobsearch, #employment, #NAJ (for “Need A Job”), etc. The keys to successfully recruiting with Twitter are the same as for earning followers, and all digital marketing really requires the same source of attention: be present, be consistent, and be in all of the forums where you want your messages to be seen; and use accurate keywords that will help you to be found by relevant jobseekers. Simply put job seekers need to know what to expect from you and how to search for your job openings.
Facebook is the largest and most active of the all of the job seeker communities. Approximately 55% of all companies surveyed are involved in social recruiting on Facebook to engage this active community. They create company pages and groups, open discussions, list their jobs, share information and jobs and events with their fans, and they advertise their jobs also through paid advertising and the Facebook marketplace. The key to achieving market reach in Facebook is to convert visitors into fans who like your page, and then to stay engaged with constant and consistent communication.
HEATHER: What are some advantages of using social media in recruiting?
TONY: Recruiting on social networking platforms makes it possible to engage potential active or passive candidates where they spend so much of their time every week. If you give the right message, your target audience will react to your job post with an application, or follow you or your company, or share your job details with their personal or professional networks. The convenience of searching for your jobs and being connected with you inside the social networking community where they exist is that they have ready access to their networks, which makes sharing your brand and opportunities so much easier.
Facebook is probably the best example of engagement in social recruiting. This is where you go to build a community. Every company should adopt facets of this networking platform to build a talent community. According to Hitwise.com, Facebook routinely ranks as the top US site across all categories at >10.10% share of all website visits. This is followed by Google at just over 7%, and YouTube at >3%. Among social networking sites, Facebook again tops the share of visits for the computers and internet industry at greater than 65% each week, Twitter is usually at 1-2% and Linkedin typically ranks about 0.6%. Facebook currently has over 750 million users worldwide, with over 50% of all users logging in daily. This is the highest ratio of daily active users over monthly active users in social media today. This increases the likelihood that your posts, discussions, jobs and ads will be clicked, read and acted upon in some way or shared. In a given month, users of Facebook will share over 30 billion links with their networks.
Twitter on the other hand, in my opinion is a lot of noise. There is so much information flying by at such a rapid pace but there are some great Twitter chats and other networking opportunities to reach many job seekers and collect followers who are interested in your company. Twitter is really a branding engine for that reason. If you find followers, they like what they hear from you and they like what they see in your stream they’ll continue to watch for your tweets.
LinkedIn is no doubt a great networking tool. You can search, find, and request connections with many candidates and colleagues who might just be able to refer you to a qualified candidate. But, even at 120 million users, over half are outside the US and approximately 20% of all LinkedIn users are in the 18-34 age range. The membership pales in comparison to Facebook, but the most discouraging thing about LinkedIn is that users engage so much less frequently on LinkedIn than they do via other social networks.
HEATHER: You talk a lot about the specifics, but what is the key to successful recruiting using social media?
TONY: There is no one recipe for success. Just like there are no secret tactics to successful recruiting. I have said this before, recruiting is nothing if not social. The catchy term “social recruiting” is redundant. The key to successful recruiting is candidate engagement – how you engage a candidate, how a candidate wants to be engaged by you – that’s the recipe you have to search for, that formula that you have to search for. No matter what tools you use – you must talk to your candidates where they are present and how they want to talk. Be present. Be authentic. Be transparent.
This is not easy to accomplish when you are working in multiple social media platforms, it becomes even more increasing difficult to accomplish. Each platform has different rules of engagement. We are working on bringing two of our technologies together to achieve this goal of improving candidate engagement.
HEATHER: Speaking of that, what is Cachinko doing to help companies and recruiters to utilize Facebook for finding qualified candidates, as well as building online talent communities?
TONY: A few months ago, we released into beta a new job search and professional networking application on Facebook. The initial release is a job seeker-centric tool that helps job seekers find jobs matched to their specifically to their skills like Pandora does for music. Our objective in launching this application was to make job search easier for job seekers, help them to access friends and friends of friends who can help them get their ideal job, and to follow companies that interest them.
Our development is currently focused on features that will help recruiters to tap into a growing and active community of job seekers enabling them to attract, find, and engage candidates, as well as to retain connections with candidates that interest them.
Our technology is based on our first product which is a recruiter centric tool helping recruiters engage candidates and build a talent platform. It helps companies to build and organize a talent pipeline. A very important aspect of our talent community technology, it has the ability to organize the networks that will get your audience excited. With precision recruitment marketing, you can improve the quality of communication to a specific audience and attract more relevant and qualified candidates.
HEATHER: Thanks so much, Tony. That’s all the time we have for today. You’ve been listening to Talent Connection, a podcast about connecting job seekers and employers, produced by Cachinko. For details about the next episode, please visit blog.cachinko.com.