Today, smart businesses know they cannot leave recruiting to their human resources departments. Instead, they motivate their teams to spread the word about their companies – and current job openings – on social media.
How can you follow their lead? Use these three proven tactics to inspire your employees to help you source star talent through their social networks.
1. Engage Your Employees
People who enjoy their jobs and workplace culture often are excited to share their enthusiasm online. And the good news is that studies have shown that engaging employees does not have to be a big-ticket budget item.
In one study of 1,000 executives by global consulting firm McKinsey & Co., researchers found that employees valued non-financial incentives over monetary rewards. Simple things, like praise from immediate managers or attention from key leaders boosted employee engagement.
And a recent article in the Harvard Business Review noted that showing employees how their efforts benefit others deepens their engagement at work. Sharing customer praise with employees can demonstrate how what they do every day touches people's lives—and motivate them to new levels of excellence.
You can build on this momentum with other programs – such as training, advancement, and recognition opportunities – to make your employees your organization's best advocates.
2. Create Share-worthy Content
Making employees feel positive about their work is critical – but if you create sub-par content, they are unlikely to share it. What's the secret of creating content that generates shares? According to Social Media Today, taking these steps will get your company noticed on social media:
- Know Your Key Audiences. Your aim is not to just speak to the audiences that already know you — but to those who may be getting their first glimpse of your company. Write content with both goals in mind.
- Create Audience-Focused Content. Your content should always have a purpose. Every post or tweet should aim to educate, inform, or entertain.
- Grab Attention. Use strong, compelling language in your social headlines and posts. And don't be afraid to be a bit edgy. Some of the most widely-shared content has an element of the unexpected.
- Make Your Content Easy to Read and Share. Ensure your content is readable with clear headers and short paragraphs. And always keep optimal character limits and image sizes in mind for the social networks you employ.
- Use Images. Studies consistently show that social posts with images motivate more social shares than text-only content. Consider this: marketing firm, Hubspot, recently reported that tweets and Facebook posts with images generate significantly more engagement than those without images.
- Have a Clear Call-to-Action. Want your employees or their networks to do something? Be direct. Tell them what to do. Ask for your preferred actions, such as retweets, shares, likes, or comments.
- Employ Hashtags. Take advantage of trending topics by using popular hashtags. Alternatively, create your own to brand your company and track conversations in your wider social community.
These tried-and-true approaches can make your content gain attention—and shares—on social media.
3. Implement a Brand Ambassador Program
If you want to take a structured approach to social recruiting, you can institute a brand ambassador program. As reported in Social Media Week, successful brand ambassador programs recognize that social networks are ultimately about personal connections – not corporate promotion.
As a first step, identify engaged employees who already demonstrate willingness to share your content on social media. Then, create share-worthy content – and provide guidelines on what employees can communicate with their followings. You can also use analytics tools to study the effectiveness of your content across social networks – and use that intelligence to refine your approach.
Unlock the Power of Social Media to Accelerate Recruiting
Without a doubt, social media can bring dramatic benefit to your recruiting efforts. While corporate social accounts have clear value, they do not always give authentic insight into what it feels like to work for your organization. The best way to put a human face on your business is to motivate your employees to participate in social recruiting.
Building a culture that engages your employees is essential. You also must craft quality content that earns attention and social shares. Once you have gained some initial traction, creating a brand ambassador program can help vault your social recruiting efforts forward.