Last week was the annual Recruitment Agency Expo at London Olympia, where recruitment professionals gathered to hear from industry experts, network with peers and get all the latest info on the UK’s staffing sector.
Among the many influential speakers stood BlueSky’s very own Managing Director, Tracey Barrett. So for those that missed out, here’s a roundup of Tracey’s presentation on Getting ROI from your PR.
Firstly let’s start with the basics, why does PR and marketing really matter in recruitment and why should you bother?
As Tracey discussed at the conference, it’s a crowded market out there. Last year alone saw 9,000 start-up agencies, so differentiation is key. Really ask yourself if your company has a USP or are you promoting the same generic selling points that clients and candidates are all too familiar with? An analogy Tracey used was to aim to be that purple cow in the field, and think about whether the value you are adding sets you apart. The value you add could be through market intelligence or thought leadership, but consider how you are going to communicate this.
Secondly, why does media coverage matter? Ever heard of the Edelman Trust Barometer? This annual credibility survey measures trust across institutions, sectors and geographies. But results of the survey found social media companies have lost the confidence of most of the public, with only a quarter of the UK population trusting them as a source of news and information. But, while there is decline in this area, trust in traditional media has risen to the highest level (61%) since 2012, so press coverage is key. It’s not to say that social media isn’t important – it really is a fantastic way to broadcast your message - but ensure the story you are telling is credible. And you’ll get that credibility from appearing in the media that your target audience reads.
Thirdly, cost or investment? We often hear people in businesses talk about PR as a cost rather than investment, often seen as a vanity project as opposed to something that feeds into business development and delivers leads. PR can be seen as something which is never measured- when it should be, and as a result consultants can’t see how it will make them money. But actually, if used properly it will deliver ROI.
As part of the presentation, Tracey covered some great examples of campaigns the BlueSky team has worked on that deliver ROI. One of them was with specialist energy recruiter, Rethink Energy:
As part of our work with Rethink we caught up with one of the consultants to uncover some of the more problematic positions to recruit for. It became apparent that the role of process safety engineer was both critical to running a successful energy extraction project and also worryingly uncommon in the oil and gas market. Following this, BlueSky engaged with a specialist publication in the oil sector and secured a feature opportunity to discuss the role, why it was in short supply and the benefits of working in these positions. Once the article was featured in the magazine, we received a call from the consultant who reported he had had been to a new business meeting where the client had a physical copy of the magazine Rethink’s article was featured in. This gave the client confidence in the consultant, and meant they were given the task of filling these roles. The positions resulted in upwards of £100,000 in fees for Rethink providing a true return on their PR investment.
It goes to show, if you are making the most out of your PR efforts then ROI can be easily achieved.
Read more about our ROI case studies.
Author: Zahra Abedi