BlueSky PR’s Tracey Barrett recently presented at the Recruitment Leaders Connect conference on “How to make money from PR,” followed by an afternoon of roundtables where we discussed the value of PR and content.
So what did we discuss?
Why aren’t more recruiters appearing in the press?
Often the answer was that they hadn’t been asked and don’t know how to approach the press themselves. But pitching a journalist a story is no different than pitching a client a candidate – the worst they can say is no.
However, one of the key things we discussed that that PR isn’t just about the press
The press can be a good credibility tick because someone else is writing about you rather than writing about yourself – but everyone can become a publisher these days when we have access to blogging platforms and LinkedIn publisher. So if you’re an organisation that doesn’t have the comfort of a marketing person to represent you to the press on your behalf, you can start just by publishing some posts yourself. It can be as simple as using your LinkedIn publisher platform to start sharing your opinions to stir up some comment and controversy.
Getting recruiters interested in content is difficult – you need to show them the ROI – get them engaged – have competitions for whose LinkedIn post can get the highest interactions etc.
If recruitment consultants are finding it difficult to write a full on post themselves, they can ask their clients or consultants for their opinion on the topic and include quotes from them.
And if you do have the marketing resource available to produce content, it doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice authenticity. Authenticity can be achieved if your marketing team understands the tone of voice of your director or consultants and combines it with the tone of the brand. So if you want to be controversial, if you want to be out there, you can still do that and have a piece of quality content. We often find recruiters particularly struggle with writing content - they tend to be better on the phone – so marketing can talk to them, have a 10 minute conversation, then content will still be the consultants thoughts, it’s still authentic, it just isn’t written by them directly.
Alternatively, if you or your consultants aren’t great at writing, have you considered Vlogging (video blogging) instead?
Creating content is like selling by stealth
Content starts people interacting with you, so you can generate leads. But what do you do once you have the engagement? Collecting followers is pointless. Are they on your CRM? How have you engaged with them going forward? What is your follow up strategy to turn that follower into a lead? Content gives you different reasons to pick up the phone and engage a client rather than just trying to outright sell your services.
Don’t forget to market your content by sending to all appropriate candidates / clients / potential clients on your database. (If you’re sending out a campaign via a system such as campaign monitor make sure you’re looking at the analytics.)
Are you leveraging your content to the full?
If you’ve written a blog post or you’ve got something in press, think about other ways you can stretch that content. Turn it into an infographic, or slideshare presentation, leverage every last drop out of that piece of content, think of all the different ways you can reformat it – you’ll find that different people then engage with the piece in its different formats and on different platforms and you can start to segment your content strategies based on the response.
Struggling to think of content ideas?
Use your data to create stories. Survey your database. Even a silly story can be a lead generator if it’s interesting and gets your audience’s attention. Not everything has to be serious and hard hitting. Follow the news agenda for stories you can comment on. If you are commenting on a current news story – original content is key. What’s the point in rehashing someone else’s content when your audience has probably read the original? You need to be able to add your own opinion or data to the story. The main objective is to create stories about what you know. Roundtables (like this one) are another great source of content ideas.
Don’t forget when you’re blogging to include hyperlinks to other areas of the website, the sticker your content and the longer the person spends on your site, the more of your expertise they witness.
And make sure your staff like and share your content!
Author: Jennifer Wright