2020 has been an uncertain and challenging year for the recruitment industry because of the impact Covid-19 has had on the job market. And this, in turn, has led to a shift from what was predominantly a candidate-driven market to a client-led one.
This means that – if you haven’t already – you need to urgently adapt your recruitment marketing strategy to reflect these changes and focus more of your messaging on client acquisition.
In this blog post, I will summarise some of the key areas that I outlined in a recent webinar on this subject:
- Why you need to revisit your client personas
- What content to use for client acquisition
- Getting your social media content right
- The need for paid social media campaigns
The changing job market: What it means for client acquisition
As mentioned above the impact of the coronavirus pandemic has flipped what was once a candidate-driven market on its back as it becomes saturated with individuals seeking new roles. This shift to a client-led market means that the recruitment landscape is far more competitive with so many recruitment firms vying for the same business.
To stand out from the crowd and generate new clients you need to adapt and refine your current marketing strategies – from the website content you produce to what you share across your social media channels.
Revisiting your personas
One of the biggest mistakes that recruitment agency owners and marketers often make is not periodically revisiting their personas to see what has changed. This is even more important now as the pain points of your client personas will have changed because of the environment we are now operating in.
Reviewing your personas means that you will develop an understanding of their current pain points which will allow you to produce content that resonates with them by:
- Addressing their current concerns
- Providing answers to any questions they may have
- Be seen to be leading the discussion on their sector’s hot topics
Producing content for client acquisition
Once you have refreshed your client personas, you can use these updated insights to develop content that is tailored towards their specific needs that you can share across your marketing channels to generate website traffic and new leads.
Here are three types of content that your recruitment firm should produce to enhance your client acquisition activities:
1. Blog posts
It is vital that you produce blog posts aimed at addressing the pain points of your ideal clients. This will help demonstrate your firm’s knowledge, increase your brand awareness and get on the radar of prospects in a competitive market.
This content should focus on the latest hot topics and trends in the sectors that you recruit in to help highlight your areas of expertise.
To produce SEO optimised blogs that rank on the first page of Google it is vital that you use the insights from your personas to produce blogs that add real value to prospects and have a minimum word count of 800-1,000 words. Long-form content is desired by Google’s algorithm and has been proven to deliver a number of additional benefits for businesses that produce them.
2. Case studies
Case studies are often overlooked by recruitment firms in favour of testimonials as the latter are quicker and easier to produce.
However, a compelling case study that clearly sets out the challenge your client was facing and how your services solved the issue demonstrates your credentials to those reading it. Using the updated insights that you have gained from your refreshed personas you can shape your case study to highlight a common problem that many prospects are currently facing and help influence them in their decision-making.
3. Gated content
Gated content is content which requires website visitors to fill out a form which asks for some basic details, such as their name, email address, company name and job title, before they can access it. The content that recruitment businesses most commonly use for this are those that contain detailed data and insights, such as ebooks, white papers and webinars.
Because gated content, such as ‘how to’ guides and sector reports, often go into far more detail than other forms of marketing content that are freely available on your website, users are more likely to give you their details in exchange to access it. This means that you will have the contact details of warm leads that your sales or business develop team can follow up with.
Auditing your social media content
The shift to a client-led market means that it is incredibly important to conduct an audit of your social media channels to evaluate what proportion of content is currently candidate and client-facing and adjust where necessary.
As part of this process it is vital that you review the follower demographics of each channel as it is far more likely that you will have more prospective clients on LinkedIn, due to the nature of the platform, than say Facebook or Instagram.
The rule of thirds
The Rule of Thirds is a social media content model used by the team here at BlueSky PR to ensure that the content of our clients’ social channels is balanced and doesn’t lean too heavily in one direction.
As the name suggests this model consists of three different categories of content. These are:
- One third of your content promotes your recruitment business – this involves sharing occasional posts which highlight the range of services that your firm offers, as well as interacting with followers to raise your profile
- One third shares curated content – this is where you curate and share the latest news articles, trends and insights from publications relevant to your client base
- One third is branded content – this is about showcasing your brand and the value you can add to clients. This is done by posting and sharing content, such as blogs, press coverage and testimonials
Why paid social is needed
The pandemic has also led to a change in online behaviour with data from Hootsuite and We Are Digital revealing that 31% of UK social media users stated that they are spending more time on social platforms than before. This combined with the decline in organic reach for business means that recruitment firms can no longer rely on solely on organic posts to reach their audiences.
Consequently it is vital to utilise paid social to re-engage existing followers that may have not seen your posts consistently for a long time with content tailored towards their pain points, in addition to reaching new prospects.