4 minute read

Why you can’t afford to cut recruitment marketing in a recession

We all want to save money, and cutting back on marketing can seem like a good way to do it. But if you're considering reducing your marketing spend, take a moment to think first.

Marketing is an investment in your company's future. Without the right marketing strategy, the results from other investments such as an ATS, LinkedIn, or sales training may not occur. What you need to do is measure the results of your efforts, so that you know what works and what doesn't work for your business.

If you are thinking about cutting your marketing spend, here are some reasons why you should reconsider:

  1. You need to stay in front of your prospects
  2. You need to keep your existing customers engaged
  3. You need to stay relevant in the market
  4. The competition is increasing and you need to differentiate yourself from them
  5. Being less visible gives your competitors the advantage
  6. Marketing is not a short-term investment but a long-term strategy

It’s easy to feel like should reduce spending when times are hard. But what if you could actually make your budget work better and faster?

allocate resources

It's time to rethink the way you allocate your resources, especially when there’s a recession on the horizon. You need to be able to prove that your recruitment marketing is making a difference for your business in those tough economic times.

Recruitment agencies need strategic marketing more than ever in a recession

The economy is not in the best shape and we all know it. There’s no denying that at least some of your clients are starting to experience a pinch as a result of the downturn.

But if you’re feeling the squeeze, so are your competitors.

So, if you want to stay competitive and win business during this economic slowdown, here’s what you need to do: adopt a more strategic approach.


By being innovative in the way you market yourself—and your services— and more creative about your approach.

You should also focus on cost-effectiveness, targeting specific industries or sectors to focus your marketing efforts on, where there's still demand for talent despite the current state of the economy.

As a business owner, you can’t afford to quit content marketing – here’s why

  • Content marketing is an effective way to reach potential customers.
  • It’s a long-term strategy that can help you build a positive brand image in your industry.
  • Content marketing allows you to connect with your target audience and position you as the expert in your field or niche.
  • It keeps your existing contact communities engaged and keeps you at the front of their minds.

Job boards won’t cut it anymore because nobody is looking for a job

Nobody is saying you shouldn’t advertise your jobs. But we all know job boards only attract active candidates.

People get nervous during a recession and are more likely to stay put than going searching for a new role. And we’ve already been experiencing a candidate shortage before the economy took a turn for the worse.

empty office

But job boards aren’t the only way you can reach candidates and fill your skills gaps. In fact, if you want more visibility for your jobs, you need to think about alternative, additional and complimentary marketing channels.

It’s time to leverage your social media channels to connect with your audience

Social media is a great way to connect with top talent and potential clients. But how do you make the most of this opportunity?

  • Be clear on your objectives and who you are looking to target.
  • Develop an editorial calendar for your blog and social channels.
  • Engage with content that influencers within your sector are sharing.
  • Engage with posts from target clients.
  • Be visible in groups dedicated to your industry that potential candidates are members of.
  • Measure your results and keep track of what does and doesn’t deliver results.

Connecting directly with top talent provides more value than targeting volume recruitment

Rather than stopping recruitment marketing altogether, you need to be more selective.

It’s generally accepted that the best candidates are not actively looking for a job.

And as I’ve said above - if you’re relying solely on posting jobs in the hope that they will attract new talent, then you might as well flip a coin.

flip a coin

So, if the best candidates aren’t responding to job boards or any of your other advertising. And if they’re not engaging with you on social media. What can you do?

  1. First – do your research and find out where they go for information.
  2. Then think of a problem you can solve for them.
  3. Give them the answer, in the place they’re looking for it.
  4. Follow up.

You don’t need a big budget

How big you consider a budget to be is of course subjective. And will depend very much on your average placement fee and the return on investment you are seeing.

Most businesses understand that content marketing costs money. But that it is a cost-effective way to reach your audience, demonstrate credibility and most importantly bring in new business.

The key to getting the most out of the time (another investment) and money you invest, is prioritising.

It’s crucial for recruitment agencies to leverage their digital marketing efforts

If you write a fantastic guest post for an industry publication that is hugely successful, what do you do next?

Write another one?

write an article

Sure you could do. But if a piece of content is delivering results you can do so much more with it.

For example:

  • You can share it in your newsletter
  • You can use segments for social media posts
  • You can make a talking head video
  • You can design an infographic
  • You can package together with more of your content on same or similar topics
  • And so on and so on…


If you’re thinking about scaling back your marketing spend, perhaps you should think again. Recruitment businesses can’t afford to go quiet in an economic downturn. In fact, your business needs strategic digital marketing more than ever before.

But I would say that wouldn’t I?

Here’s what your peers have to say.

And a few case studies – including one on the £100k article…


Author: Jennifer Wright

As BlueSky PR’s Head of Marketing, with almost 10 years’ prior experience in the recruitment industry, Jennifer writes articles and guest posts to inspire recruitment agencies to build their brands, improve their content, bring in more leads and generally make their lives easier.

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