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How to find the right candidate in 2022 with Matt Lozar part 1: Employer branding and messaging

It can be hard to gauge the effects and importance of employer branding. That’s because this is an element of your strategy that you can really only see the effects from on a long enough timescale. So what can you do today to improve your branding and messaging? We asked Matt Lozar, Director of Recruitment Marketing at the Haley Marketing Group about his experiences in this field.

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Matt Lozar works as the Director of Recruitment Marketing at the Haley Marketing Group, the United States’ largest marketing firm dedicated to servicing small companies in the staffing and recruiting industry. We talked to him about recruitment marketing, how his company handles it, and what kind of takeaways he has from years of experience helping companies with recruitment marketing. This article in two parts is a boiled-down transcript of the wisdom Matt shared in his Webinar “How to find the right candidate in 2022” that you can rewatch here

There are a lot of challenges in the job market right now, with lack of candidates being the biggest. As we all know the pandemic has worked as a hard reset of the job market, reshuffling the relation between employer and employee. Let’s have a look at all of the challenges and how you can navigate them. 

The job posting is just the start

It all starts with job postings. Job titles have to be what candidates are looking for. It can’t just be based on what you or your team want it to be. Because after all, the single most important goal for a job title is that the candidate needs to be able to find it, right? So you need to conduct research to find out what candidates are looking for. 

An example: we worked for a company that hired for apartment staffing and maintenance services. They had a job opening called “Leasing Consultant” that wasn’t getting a lot of applications. We did some research and we decided to host it again, but this time rephrased the title to “Leasing Agent”. We found someone immediately, and not only that, it tripled the applications for this position. We found this trend by doing keyword research. It just goes to show how important it is to understand what your candidate wants, and how they are searching for what they want.

 

Wording your job title correctly can be massively important.

But it doesn’t stop there: below the title is the job description, which can be equally important. Here you need to ask yourself: what stands out? What makes the culture so special, and what’s different about this job as opposed to all the other jobs? At Haley we usually decide to include a “sizzle statement” at the top of the job description, to entice candidates to continue reading. This contains important information that will allow candidates to assess whether the job is right for them. Including important information right at the start is a great way to attract the right candidates. like whether they have to work overtime or not. For one candidate this will be the trigger to stop reading, for another it will mean that this is the job they want. 

Your job title and description are the most important tools you have to get the candidate through the door, which is the hardest part, and you can take it from there. 

Employer branding

How important is employer branding? VERY. It’s what people are hearing and seeing about your company, and it defines how they see you. Clicking on a job posting is one thing, following through and seeing a landing page that completes the cycle is vital. Every new step should contain a little more information, like a video or employee testimonial. 

Employer branding takes a lot of time. Our CEO at Haley once deduced that it takes 21 messages to get a conversion… and your branding needs to be consistent throughout all of them. Website, social media, Google reviews all have to tie together so people can assess if it’s the place for them. There have to be several touch points that all inspire trust in a candidate. You don’t necessarily see this specific idea a lot in traditional advertising, because consumer brands and employer brands are still two different things. 

Consistent branding is a must if you want to be taken seriously as a brand. Example: scooter sharing app Lime.

Building on this first point, providing good content and building your following on social media can be immensely valuable. You never know when someone will decide to quit their job and think of you, so it’s vital to maintain this passive audience and build their goodwill. It all adds to your candidate database and your active reach, which can be valuable for so many reasons. Simultaneously you could try getting more leads with platform-native tools like Facebook Lead Forms, a frictionless way to collect information and build a database of job-seekers. 

Messaging that works best

It always comes down to “what’s in it for me”. The candidate is the one seeing and reading your messaging, and in that moment it’s about nothing or nobody else than the candidate. 

These days signal words like remote, work from home or hybrid are very strong triggers, it’s what the people want. Not just because they like to schedule work into their life flexibly either. It also shows trust on the company side, it shows a company that knows how to run itself, and people are craving that agency. They have enjoyed it for a while now due to the pandemic and they’re not looking to give back the freedom that they’ve won. 

If your job is remote, make sure it’s readily apparent from the listing – this is a powerful selling point!

What people are missing however is the daily contacts, having a chat at the coffee maker, or any of these small interactions that come with being in an office together. You can win them over by talking about what your company is doing to maintain this sense of togetherness. This is a developing situation so there are no standard templates for this by any means, but it could be a strong tactic to appeal to this feeling of connection. 

Recap of part 1

So, you’ve heard it from Matt: this is the type of questions that you should be asking of your messaging. Check out part 2, in which we will dive deeper into Gen Z, automation and how to reach talent online.

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