How to use social media to recruit top talent

By / February 21, 2018

Social media doesn’t just have to be about oversharing vacation pictures or even publicizing an upcoming event at your business. It also offers us new ways to connect and new pathways to meet others. As such, social media platforms offer an effective tool to reach qualified candidates. (Caveat: If you’re not an active user or believer in social media, it may not be the right fit for you. Your time may be better spent writing a perfect help wanted ad for your business, and getting it in front of people.) Here are some best practices for leveraging social media for job recruitment.

Pick the right platform

Social recruiting won’t net the right candidates if the right candidates aren’t on social media. Determine where your target recruits are online and go there. For many people this is Facebook or LinkedIn. For others it might be Twitter or Pinterest.

Join groups

On LinkedIn and Facebook, join groups where people within your industry go and interact. Be an active participant by taking part in discussions or leaving insightful comments. This will help grow your network and raise awareness for your company.

Use keywords

Using keywords on sites like Twitter and LinkedIn will help attract the most appropriate individuals who will be right for your organization.

Use simple, casual words

Newspaper classifieds are often cold and to the point. Social media, on the other hand, offers an opportunity to give the candidates a real sense of life in your company. Being conversational makes your company sound more human.

Include the WIIFM

Instead of just listing job requirements, consider the What’s In It For Me (WIIFM) factor. Put yourself in their shoes. What would you want to see in a potential job offering? Write job posts from that angle for better results.

Get referrals

Tap your connections to be on the lookout for you—let them know what you’re hiring for and what kind of personality and experience you’re looking for in your new hire. Don’t forget to reward anyone who refers someone to you; even if you don’t hire that person, send a simple thank-you gift for their attempt—it’s an easy way to ensure they’ll continue to send you leads.

Recruit passive job seekers

Social media can be a great way to connect with folks who aren’t job searching. Leverage introductions through one of your common connections—especially on LinkedIn or Facebook—where people see their mutual friends.

Leverage linkedIn Groups

Naturally, LinkedIn, and more specifically LinkedIn Groups, is one of the best resources for social job recruitment. Here’s how to best leverage those groups for promoting your job opening.

• Pick the right groups: Before setting off to join every group imaginable, be clear about what you hope to achieve. It can be multi-faceted like building expert status, finding new customers, and creating a talent pipeline. Or it could be project-driven—to simply find a marketing manager.

• Participate: Contribute to group discussions, answer questions, share experiences and relevant information. The more often you do this, the greater the chance you could have of being recognized.

• Post a Job: You can post a job on LinkedIn the traditional way (links in your newsfeed and paid job listings) or you can post it on a group board. Job ads that are posted on group boards not only reach those who are directly looking for a job but those who may know someone who is interested in the job as well.

• Recruit: You can also directly message members of groups that you are part of to network or alert them to a job opportunity. If you really want to level up, get an upgraded subscription and use the advanced search feature and InMails to connect with people you’re interested in.

Social media platforms offer opportunities to reach and engage with potential candidates. If you’re in need of a great employee, spend some time, chat up, and stay in touch.

Rikka Brandon

Rikka Brandon is the founder and Chief Executive Recruiter of Building Gurus, a boutique executive search and consulting firm that works exclusively with building product manufacturers and distributors to find, hire, and retain top executive-level talent. She is also the best-selling author of "Hire Power: Everything Entrepreneurs Need To Know To Hire Awesome People."