I’m a big believer in the power of social media for talent acquisition. Each month, I conduct a survey of the most successful recruiting content over a seven-day span on the three biggest social platforms. If you’d like to engage your ideal job-seekers and create a buzz on social media, here are the latest best practices.
Sport Clips Lets Employees Reward Each Other on Facebook
I love it when companies use recruiting channels to speak not just to job-seekers but also to its current employees. That strategy lets potential workers, and even the general public, see how a company values its staff. This week, haircut franchise Sport Clips provided a perfect example with a Facebook post that began: “Do you have a Culture Queen in your store? Someone who always has a positive attitude and is passionate about what she does. She always does her best, does what is right, and treats others the way they want to be treated.” Sport Clips then asked its stylists to nominate their store’s Culture Queens.
The replies showed great camaraderie and generosity. “Always smiles, and brings joys to our days.” “Best store manager I ever had.” “Pushes everyone to do their best.” The nominating stylists often tagged the nominees in their replies, so the person saw their nomination and would say “thank you” in their own replies. All along, Sport Clips “liked” all the responses and even returned to answer a question.
The result was 32 likes, 29 shares, and seven replies — each of which begat its own chain of replies. The employee engagement, good feelings, and strong employer branding the post generated is impossible to quantify but immensely important.
How you can be like Sport Clips: It’s easy for an organization over a certain size to hold its own “Culture Queen”-like contest. After all, the only prize was to be featured on social media and in Sport Clips’ quarterly newsletter. Simply use your social recruiting platform to ask your staff to nominate an employee of the month, or a worker who embodies one of your core values.
Don’t abandon the post afterwards; Sport Clips made a point of “liking” each response to show they acknowledged it and to add more activity to the post, which helps Facebook show it to more people.
Everyone likes to vote or share their opinion online (just ask BuzzFeed) and to share positive information about themselves. You can bet that every nominee shared that Facebook post … and “liked” the Sport Clips Jobs page if they hadn’t before.
Comcast Helps Students Get an Internship on Twitter
I always tell clients that social recruiting channels should serve as a general job resource and not just a continuous feed of a company’s open positions. Comcast illustrated this important principle with a live chat on Twitter. Using the hashtag #MeetComcast, the entertainment giant’s recruiting channel, @ComcastCareers, gave tips on using Twitter to find internships — and not just at Comcast.
“Have you tried searching for recruiters [on Twitter] at your target company? Add ‘company name’ + ‘recruiter’ to your search,” went one tweet. The company even asked questions: “Anyone have any luck getting #internship through Twitter?”
Students replied and asked their own questions. When a LinkedIn professional added some advice about his social network, Comcast retweeted it. The company even managed to plug itself, with tweets like “Some companies make it easy to engage recruiters via Twitter lists. Here’s how we do it,” followed by a link to its own lists.
The result was dozens of retweets, replies, and favorites. Comcast also educated job-seekers and how to better engage its talent acquisition team on Twitter, and how to use Twitter to research opportunities in general. @ComcastCareers gained some new followers, showed tremendous goodwill, and demonstrated its tech savvy by hosting an event on a social platform.
How you can be like Comcast: A live Twitter chat costs nothing. Simply create a hashtag and promote the event in advance. Create 5 or 10 tweets ahead of time that you can post regardless of the chat’s attendance or activity. Have a recruiter on standby to jump in and answer questions, or to provide their own advice if it’s slow going at first. Offer tips that are specific to your organization as well as tips that could lead job-seekers to your competitors.
Once the event is over, you can link to the hashtag, and thus the entire chat, on other social channels, providing an evergreen resource.
GM Gives Back to the Community on YouTube
Some of the most effective recruiting videos don’t take place in an office. General Motors illustrated with a video uploaded a month ago that has generated a steady flow of views. The GM Student Corps Story is a beautifully shot nine-and-a-half-minute video about GM’s outreach program.
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Student Corps is a paid internship program for high school students in the Detroit and Flint area, where GM is based. The organization allows the students to conceive and implement their own events to give back to the community. This summer, it included painting school buildings and repairing playgrounds.
GM partners retired workers with the students to help teach them about the working life and to provide an insight into a career at the automaker. The video shows interviews with the retirees, the students, and college-aged volunteers who serve as advisors between the too. The stories are inspiring, as 65-year-old mechanics and high school freshmen bond over their shared love of their communities.
The result is a touching short film that doesn’t show a car or an assembly line or a boardroom. The video has generated 1,086 views and 29 likes.
How you can be like GM: You probably don’t have an outreach program on par with GM’s, set in the unfolding drama that is the fall and rise of Detroit. But your company probably does have at least one official charity or partners with some non-profit organization. Even if your workers only volunteer one day a year — say, around Thanksgiving — that can still be the basis for a powerful video that shows your corporate social responsibility, which matters to 78 percent of Millennials.
A one-day shoot at a hospital or a food drive or an animal shelter can provide a dozen feel-good videos, photos, and testimonials for your recruitment materials. It also highlights your culture, your core values, and your company’s commitment to making the world a better place.
These three posts point to the “softer” side of recruiting — making employees fee valued, offering advice to college students, and giving back to the community.
These strategies have hard metrics on their side, however. Employee reward/referral programs like Sport Clips’ bring in more quality applications. Providing a selfless resource of information is a compelling differentiator in the social recruiting space. And corporate social responsibility has become a major factor in choosing a company among Generation Y.
Two of these strategies are free, so there’s no reason why your organization can’t take a giant leap forward in its social talent acquisition efforts.