While no-one is really sure what will happen in the wake of COVID-19, one certainty is that millions of job-seekers will be searching for employment at the same time. Therefore, if agencies are to stand out in this market, having consistent and clear communications with clients and candidates will be essential for firms going forward.
The UK eagerly awaited the scheduled announcement from the Prime Minister on Sunday 10th May, with the expectation of lockdown being eased a prediction of the hopeful, while the realists among us perhaps knew that it’s still too early for that. And while there remains to be some clarity on exactly what we can and can’t do (remember, you can go out but you can’t, and go to work but don’t travel, and don’t go to work if you can work from home – and please, PLEASE stay alert, whatever that’s supposed to mean) one thing is for sure: uncertainty remains. So just what does the latest Covid-19 news mean for recruiters and what should we all be doing more of to keep battling on?
Last week we ran our fifth live recruitment marketing Q&A focusing on crisis PR for recruiters, hosted by Vickie Collinge and Dan Stobbs.
Last week we ran our fourth live recruitment marketing Q&A focusing on recruiters social media use, hosted by Dan Stobbs and Steph King.
There’s no denying that COVID-19 has meant that the messages you communicate with candidates has had to change exponentially in a matter of weeks. Many agencies will have spent a lot of time and effort developing a content calendar full of useful tips and resources. However, in the current climate some of these subjects will no longer be appropriate – a series aimed at job opportunities overseas or securing a pay rise, for example. Consequently, firms have had to go back to the drawing board and come up with new resources that address candidates’ pain points in the current climate. So what are the top tips for ensuring your content is appropriate and, crucially, that all candidates are responded to when they engage with your brand?
Last week we ran our third live recruitment marketing Q&A focusing on events and survey data hosted by Vickie Collinge and Dan Stobbs. BlueSky's @VickieCollinge and @Stobbzy are live for our recruitment marketing Q&A. Ask them your questions concerning virtual events and survey data.#RecruitmentMarketing #Recruitment https://t.co/0d2XzAQeYR — Tracey Barrett (Dunn) (@BlueSkyPR) April 22, 2020 Here's what was covered: Vickie: Hi everyone! Hi Dan! Welcome everyone who’s joined us. I hope everyone is well. Thank you for coming on board for this week’s live Q&A. Just a quick comment from me, I’m sure if anyone has seen the promo’s we’ve been putting out on social media, it was my colleague Steph King that was going to be joining me on this today, obviously Dan is not Steph but I’m afraid Steph has been pulled away on something else suddenly. So, Dan our Head of Social Media has kindly agreed to join me today and pose some of the questions you’ve been asking us over the last week or so. If anyone has seen one of these before, we’ve all been taking part in these live Twitter Q&A’s to give everyone in the recruitment industry the opportunity to ask us anything about recruitment marketing, PR, social media – questions that are really at the top of your list at the moment. And we’re answering them so we can give everyone as much support and help as we can during these difficult times.
In just a matter of months, the coronavirus pandemic has completely turned our lives upside down. From the way in which we attend events to how we communicate with friends and colleagues, the pandemic has forced us to take things online.
Last week we ran our second coronavirus helpline live recruitment marketing Q&A on Twitter, this time focusing on social media for recruitment and hosted by Dan Stobbs and Stephanie King.
With talks of GDP falling and the possibility of a recession on the cards as COVID-19 causes chaos to the global economy, I thought it pertinent to write a blog on how recruitment can survive a recession. As someone who started her PR career as the financial crisis hit, I’ve witnessed first-hand from the first day of my working life what tactics do and don’t work during turbulent times like these. Of course, I’m not suggesting that these approaches will work on a blanket basis and as a disclaimer I will add that I’m fully aware the we’re facing unprecedented times – the likes of which we’ve never seen, so naturally, no one can definitely say that if you do X, your business will survive. But we’re all human, and part of what makes us all so great is our ability to learn (well some of us anyway – I’m still waiting for my husband to learn to put laundry IN the wash basket, not next to it).
If you’re anything like the team at BlueSky you’ll be used to attending – and for many organising your own - industry events. At a time when we can’t attend in person, it is perhaps fair to say that many recruitment marketers are removing events from their future plans. But it doesn’t, and shouldn’t, have to be that way – in fact now is a great time to create virtual events for your clients and candidates. So, how can you organise a successful virtual event? And what should they be about?
Last week we ran our first coronavirus helpline live recruitment marketing Q&A on Twitter, hosted by Vickie Collinge and Dan Stobbs, who answered all the marketing, PR and social media questions you tweeted in to us.
Whilst we might all be conducting 'business as normal', the current global situation is far from it. Working remotely is possibly something you've always dreamt of under different circumstances but this reality is more challenging. One of the key things we've learnt though is that, locked in our homes as we might be, and difficult as it may be to navigate, life does not stop, and recruitment cannot afford to wait this one out. So, what do you do?
The last few weeks have certainly been trying times for many of us. As most of the world goes into ‘lockdown’ in an attempt to tackle the coronavirus pandemic, and the news is inundated with statistics and updates of cases, it can be difficult to remain positive. However, during tough times we see many cases of community support emerge – and there are many of them we should celebrate during this period of difficulty. Here are five uplifting stories which have surfaced from this time of crisis which will help put a smile on your face.
The recruitment industry has thankfully come a long way since the days of being proudly run with a ‘boys’ club’ attitude, however there is still so much left to do in terms of achieving equality. While there certainly has been a shift in mentality, with women more welcome than ever before, just like several other industries, there is still a stark gender pay gap and lack of representation at board level. This International Women’s Day, we’re highlighting the need for gender balance in recruitment.
By now, I’m sure you’re aware of how important creating content is for your business. If you don’t, here’s a quick post from us explaining why your firm needs to have a blog.
Unless you have been living under a rock for the last twenty years, you will know social media is a tool most often used by people to present themselves and companies to promote their products and brand. But did you know that 92% of recruiters are avid users of social media, using social networks in their recruitment efforts?
This month, the BlueSky PR team headed to the Recruitment Agency Expo 2020 in Olympia London, the UK’s number one event for recruitment leaders. Both days were packed with insightful talks back-to-back on all things ranging from IR35 to leadership skills. Here’s a quick run-down of what happened on the day.
In the busy world of recruitment, agencies are often so fixated on the daily complexities of their jobs that they may miss out on the benefits of an effective communications strategy. Here’s just a few of the most effective communications tricks to double your recruitment agency’s client base:
In my last Apprentice blog I outlined the reasons why I thought Scarlet would win. Then Lord Sugar hired Carina. Now I'm not going to lie, in the lead up to the final it appeared that the head hunter had the most ideal business proposal – and I truly believe it still is, even if she didn't win. However, Carina absolutely pulled it out of the bag in the last show of 2019 and completely deserved the win. As both candidates arguably fared well in the final, for my last blog post I want to outline the recruitment PR lessons both individuals demonstrated well.
I genuinely cannot believe that we’re talking about lies on CVs once again on the Apprentice. It seems like only yesterday when Lee McQueen (another recruiter) was caught out in the interview stage for making false statements, but it was actually 11 years ago this was first aired. Then seven years ago, we saw another candidate from the employment sphere – Ricky Martin – also face the wrath of the interviewers for claiming to be a member of APSCo when, in fact, he wasn’t. And it looks like we’re three for three when it comes to lies from recruiters on the Apprentice. Here’s some of the recruitment PR lessons from the penultimate episode of the 2019 show.
Normally I focus on the PR lessons we can learn from the latest episode of the Apprentice, however this week it makes absolute sense to focus on recruitment marketing instead. Afterall, it was a marketing challenge – or fail for some.
I couldn’t bring myself to write this blog post straight away for one simple reason: I am absolutely gutted that Thomas has gone. Don’t get me wrong, his team deserved to lose and he made a fundamental mistake in this latest task. But, he was a genuinely likeable personality (very hard to find in the realms of reality TV shows these days). And I think that’s one of the crucial lessons we should all take away when it comes to PR for recruitment agencies: being authentic.
In today’s digitally driven world, social media is a vital component of any recruitment marketing strategy. However, whilst most firms are more than competent at sharing content such as job posts and blogs across their firm’s channels, at BlueSky PR we’ve found that they are often missing out on some of the key opportunities that social media has to offer.
A poorly conceived PR stunt, an attempt to mislead the public, or a Machiavellian plan to position Tory MP’s front and centre of the news agenda? Whatever your opinion on the Conservatives’ decision to temporarily rebrand its CCHQ Press Twitter account to ‘factcheckUK’ for the ITV leaders’ debate, it will certainly be remembered as a watershed moment in PR and communications for years to come.
As the UK eagerly awaits the next episode of the Apprentice (ok, I might be slightly exaggerating there!) I thought I’d be a bit different with my regular blog posts and outline my predictions for what recruitment PR lessons we can expect this week.
If you had asked me two weeks ago how PR could’ve helped in my role, I honestly wouldn’t be sure. But after just one week working at BlueSky I can see how integral PR is to help recruitment businesses stand out from the crowd and in turn increase revenue.
I was lucky enough to attend one of the most iconic and highest profile events in recruitment last week, TALiNT’s World Leaders in Recruitment conference. All of the hottest topics in the industry and upcoming challenges and trends were discussed and debated by some of the most influential people in the sector, including our own Head of Practice, Vickie Collinge. There were a number of interesting discussions, which provided much food for thought on key recruitment trends for 2020. Here are the key takeaways from the event.
If you’ve been following my recent blogs, you might have guessed that my opinion of the Apprentice isn’t great. There’s a wealth of flaws in the process itself that I find frustrating – what value is it to a potential business partner to see if someone can design a rollercoaster when the product they’re seeking investment for is a beauty cream, for example. BUT, the show does give me plenty of recruitment PR tips to talk about. So, as much as my family are probably fed up with me shouting at the TV on a Wednesday night, I’ll keep watching and keep writing. Here’s my thoughts from last night’s car (or rollercoaster) crash.
I may be wrong here, but from my personal recollection I can’t remember a group on the Apprentice ever being thrashed as much as Team Unison did last night (and how ironic is the name considering the complete disarray they all fell into!). You could almost pinpoint the moment their hearts sank as it was revealed that Empower had sold over £1 million, while Unison failed to even reach £500,000. In my view, so much went wrong for the losing team last night that I can’t give you a concrete recruitment PR lesson. But I can give three.
I’m not going to lie, I was slightly concerned when I committed to writing a weekly reaction to the Apprentice and the relevant lessons in PR for recruitment firms, but the show seems to keep on giving! Indeed, before we were even half way into the latest episode, I had my top advice outlined and, had I been a gambling woman, I would’ve successfully bet on which team would lose.
Hands up who watched the Apprentice last night and found themselves arguing with the TV? I know I did! Once again in typical Apprentice fashion we witnessed a team fail miserably in what should arguably have been a relatively simple task. And yet again, I have a crucial recruitment PR lesson to talk about.
Building a thought leader We’ve blogged before on the value of positioning your spokespeople as thought leaders when it comes to profile building, and how publicly sharing insight can be a fast-track to elevating your personal brand and, by association, your company’s corporate identity.
It’s that time of year again. No, I’m not talking about the time to break out your jumpers and dig out your warm coats. It’s Apprentice time. Now I won’t lie, way back when this show first aired, I was a big fan. As a recruitment PR professional, it was great entertainment watching the cut-throat nature of high-profile (and highly-paid) hiring. And at the time, the activities on the show seemed completely reasonable ways to identify the next high-paid apprentice for Lord Sugar.
Have you tried googling yourself before? That’s one of the first things I got told to do in my journalism class, and it’s stayed useful throughout my career. It’s also something that I recommend every business do too. With most people researching products and services online before buying, you want to ensure that your digital brand stands out from the crowd and leaves a memorable impression. Utilising the web is one of the best ways to secure candidates and clients. So, here’s how recruitment firms can build their reputation online and take their business to the next level.
I know first-hand how much effort goes into developing content ideas and getting copy drafted and fine-tuned so that it is a perfect balance of opinion and promotion. So, I also know that seeing all this hard work result in one or two bits of coverage, and then being left to stagnate, can be incredibly frustrating. But there are ways of making your content work better for you. Here’s a few tips.
As social media feeds continue to become increasingly saturated, it is undoubtedly harder than ever for brands to cut through the noise. So how can your recruitment firm attempt to stand out from the crowd?
Blogging is one of the key skills that I’ve picked up during my time at BlueSky, and whether it’s for our clients, or for ourselves, there are a few key principles that always hold true. Here are my tips for writing a compelling blog.
Having been at BlueSky for close to a year now, and starting with next to no PR experience, I’ve definitely picked up a few things! So, here are some of the most valuable PR lessons I’ve learnt about pitching, one of the most important aspects of the job.
A few years ago, I came across an idea called 'pay it forward'. If you are unfamiliar with it, it's actually rather a nice idea that simply promotes the notion that if everyone does something to help someone else, then, in the long run, we all benefit. The same concept of collaboration to make things better for everyone underpins the value of content contribution, in that your brand will feel the benefit of helping another business build theirs.
Over the past 12-18 months, LinkedIn has been busy tweaking its algorithm to increase the number of valuable conversations taking place on the platform whilst reducing the number of viral posts that appear in users’ feeds.
Over the coming weeks the BlueSky PR recruitment and talent management team will be sharing some of their PR lessons. While I certainly have many to talk about (it’s an age thing – I’ve learnt a lot in my long career!) there’s one lesson that crops up as a recurring theme in conversations: how can you develop the best story.
With 45% of the total world population using social networks, businesses now have a fantastic and cost-effective way of reaching potential customers and interacting with existing ones worldwide. However, to reap all the benefits that come with using social platforms, you must always be thinking about how to get more engagement on your social media. Even if you have many followers, you want to aim for lots of interaction as this will help you appear higher in people’s feeds. A channel without much engagement can be perceived as dull and doesn’t generate all the business benefits of a thriving, active page. That’s why it’s crucial to understand how each platform you’re using works and how it’s best to target users. Here’s how to get more people liking, sharing and commenting.
I have already written about the importance of having a business blog if you are a recruitment firm. However, there are more steps that you need to consider after starting one, such as using the right keywords for recruitment blogs, and then applying them effectively. This can be difficult to get to grips with at first, however it is a crucial step in content writing to master, as without the correct keywords, your carefully crafted work risks being lost in the depths of Google! There are now a number of free tools online such as ‘Google Trends’ or ‘Answer The Public ’ to help you find out what is trending around your topic and what the relevant keywords are.
Whether you’re crafting blog posts, white papers, articles or press releases, including insight from third parties can boost the authority and reach of your communications. I’ve previously written on how statistics or quotes pulled from public domain can elevate your thought leadership offerings from a rambling rant, to objective and measured insight, in the eyes of your readers. However, it is crucial that you always check your sources.
When it comes to helping your company achieve its goals, great communication can be what makes the difference. So, here are some of the reasons why you should invest in recruitment agency PR.
With over 500 million tweets sent every day, it is essential to have an understanding of how Twitter’s algorithm works if your recruitment firm is to rise above the noise and attract new candidates and clients on the platform.
If there’s one PR issue that recruitment agency owners are arguably most concerned about it’s what to do in a crisis. Whether this be a breaking news story about some less than scrupulous actions from an employee or potentially detrimental information about your firm’s finances being leaked, implementing a damage limitation process at this time is crucial for businesses of all sizes. But it’s not an easy task. So how should you handle a PR crisis?
In the business world, and particularly in recruitment, people are considered a company’s greatest asset – and rightly so. Not only do your staff get the actual work done, they also hold the key to your very best marketing strategy – employee advocacy.
When it comes to PR, sitting down and strategising before embarking on a campaign is essential. A well thought out, comprehensive strategy can often make the difference between success and failure. Correct planning will help you organise your ideas, make sure your core messages are congruent, work out your target audience and decide on the tactics that you will use to target them. While ‘make a plan’ might sound like the most obvious statement in the book, it’s something that often gets overlooked or doesn’t get as much attention as it deserves. So, with that in mind – here’s some simple tips for how to create a PR plan.