I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been asked, “OK, so what does Influence & Co. actually do?” I’ve heard this from friends, family members, and even job candidates during the interview process (ahem).
Plenty of recruiters will tell you not to waste your time on a candidate who doesn’t already know what you do — and you really shouldn’t invest in someone who won’t bother to do a little legwork of her own. But we at Influence & Co. know that elevating candidates’ knowledge is part of our job, too.
We’re a content marketing company, and while we live and breathe content here, it’s still not something everyone in marketing practices right now. Plus, students don’t really have the chance to study it in school, as colleges and universities haven’t fully adopted their own content marketing programs. How can we expect everyone who applies to know content marketing inside and out?
We can’t. Instead, we use our content to educate those prospective Influence & Co. employees in a way that’s very similar to how our marketing team uses content to generate leads and how our sales team uses content to nurture and close sales.
In fact, Influence & Co. used content to hire 30 people in one year. And no matter how much you’re growing or how many people you’re looking to bring on board, your content can play an important role in recruitment. Here are four simple ways to bring content into your hiring process — and get more of the right talent on your team:
Imagine finding what sounds like your dream job, only to discover during your interviews (or, worse, on your first day on the job) that it’s actually more of a nightmare. Nothing is what it appeared to be in your conversations, your responsibilities don’t line up with the job description, and the company is more concerned with getting people onboarded than making sure they’re the right fit for their roles.
It’s not unlike finding an article online with an amazing headline and then realizing you were baited into clicking on a terrible article (except that the whole tricking-you-into-a-job thing is way worse).
If you check out our “Careers” page, you’ll see that our job titles aren’t anything fancy; they represent exactly what the job entails, and the descriptions are equally transparent. But we do use words like “specialist” and “strategist” because those are the people we want to attract, and words like “specialist” and “strategist” are much more enticing than a vague term like “worker.”
You don’t want to mislead your audience, whether that audience includes potential job candidates or future clients, but you do want to draw them in. So keep communication honest, but don’t sacrifice the fun, engaging, and enticing elements, either.
What do you want people to see when they visit the “Careers” page of your site? More importantly, what do they need to see to get a good idea of who you are and why your company is the right one to work for?
It’s lazy to simply list the open positions you have and call it a day. Often, people aren’t just looking for a job to do — they’re looking for a company to work for, people to work alongside, and a mission to fulfill. Speak to all their career-related questions and longings right there on the same page.
Consider sharing a recruitment video to give applicants an idea of what it’s like to work at your company and who they’ll be working with. Publish some testimonials from current team members highlighting the best parts of their jobs, and include links to pieces of external content that feature your company, like PR opportunities, press mentions, and published content from your company’s thought leaders.
Don’t worry if you can’t include all the fabulous content about your company on the “Careers” page; you’ll have plenty of other opportunities to share content with job candidates.
Take it a step further, sharing specific content pieces directly with individual recruits. Once someone has applied and you have a better idea of how much she knows about your industry, your company, and what you do, you can send more targeted content to her throughout the interview process that answers her exact questions.
This content can shift from what your company does to how you achieve results for clients. For example, we send new recruits the blog post “What Is Content Marketing?” to provide an overview of what we do so they have a clearer idea of how our company does what it does within this industry — and we can have better conversations about our work from the very first day.
Your marketing team likely keeps your company brand top of mind with audiences via social media and email marketing, and your recruitment process doesn’t have to look very different. These methods are perfect for keeping in contact with those you’re looking to add to your team.
Include people of interest on your email marketing list, and send them pieces of content you know will answer their questions, keep them engaged, and make them want to work for your company. Tweet or send a direct message with specific articles at candidates, or send a job opening via LinkedIn to candidates who come recommended by your own employees. You can send industry-related and job-related content to potential employees in a variety of ways; make sure you’re taking advantage of as many as possible.
Recruiting employees is a big undertaking, and you’ll need some help to ensure candidates are fully educated, engaged, and prepared to work for your company. If you know how to use it, content can be just the help you’re looking for.
I love pop culture, my dog, driving with my sunroof open, and everything Mizzou-related. I'm driven by finding new ways to encourage and engage our team, and I start each morning by asking myself, "What would Beyoncé do?