I was recently in Dallas for a conference with some of the largest search firms in the country. At the end of the conference, one of the biggest questions the firms had was not, “Should I be spending money on digital marketing?” Instead, they were asking, “Ok, how much money should I be spending on digital marketing?”
That realization reflects the current state of our industry – the top recruiting firms in the country are investing in digital marketing, and if you aren’t, you’re going to get left behind. In today’s digital world, your clients conduct the majority their research before you even talk with them – regardless if you are a retained-only firm or a staffing agency, 70-80% of decisions are being made by your clients ahead of time online. They either go online to learn who’s in your space, or to learn what kind of credibility your company has before they decide if they want to call you. If you don’t have a digital marketing strategy that supports your online presence, you might be losing clients before you even have the chance to talk with them. Getting started with digital marketing can seem daunting at first, but it doesn’t have to be. If you’re just getting started, here are five things to start considering right away.
1. Content Strategy
The heart of your digital marketing strategy lies within your content. In the recruiting industry, you’re in the business of people—and what better business to be in from a content creation perspective? The psychology and strategy behind connecting candidates and clients is a great source for inspiration and creativity. Different types of content you can create include:
• White papers or case studies
• And more
Not sure where to start? One simple step is to consistently publish industry-relevant content to your company’s blog. As we outlined in a recent post, blog posts can serve multiple purposes at once: increasing brand awareness, discussing job openings, establishing your employees as thought leaders within the industry, and generating more leads. Without being overly promotional or making these content marketing mistakes, you can create content that informs, educates, and engages your potential clients in a captivating way—ultimately converting them to leads.
Google now processes 63,000 searches per second. Let that sink in. 63,000 per second. Competing in today’s digital landscape means you need to target people who are searching for your services online – that could be clients searching for your services, or candidates who are looking for a role. SEO (search engine optimization) helps your web page rank higher in search results, which helps more people find you. Think of it like a digital competition: to outrank other web pages, you’re going to need to do some SEO research on what keywords (think: what people type into google) you want to rank for and how to address those keywords with your content. For example, if you want to rank on google for “how to recruit the best finance talent” you’re going to need to plan content that addresses that phrase and ultimately, answers that question. SEO can be a complex topic because it’s not enough to just “guess” what people are searching for. There are some free tools available, however, like Google Analytics’ Keyword Planner, that can help you get started. (Also think about the common questions you get from clients and/or candidates – what if you answered those in blogs and they found you online because of it? This is a great way to become a thought leader.)
3. User Experience
Getting eyes to your website isn’t helpful if your website itself is a mess. User experience (also called UX) is how someone interacts with your website. You want people to easily be able to navigate through different pages and contact you; maximizing this efficiency can be done through a process of design, development, and copywriting. You need clear CTA’s (calls to action) that direct your user through the sales funnel. To assess how user-friendly your site currently is, get a test group and ask them:
• How many clicks did it take you to get to our contact page or fill out a form?
• Was there anything confusing about the website experience?
• Would you come back and visit this website again?
How users engage with your site drives the rest of your digital marketing strategy, so you need to be sure your web page provides clear benefits and is easy to use.
4. Social Media
Simply put, your firm needs a social media presence to survive. Social media benefits your brand in several ways:
• Increases brand visibility
• Allows you to engage with clients in candidates easier
• Promotes your company’s values and culture
• Can help generate leads
If you’re overwhelmed by the thought of the latest and greatest social media platforms that seem to be developed every other day, don’t worry: you don’t need to do it all at once. It’s more important to decide which social media channels will be most beneficial for your business. What platforms are your audience most active on? Likely LinkedIn (at least if your client/candidate is in the business market). And Facebook and Twitter could be a nice second. You should vary the medium of content that gets shared, from articles and images to videos, which we know get the most engagement across all social media platforms.
5. Pay-Per-Click Advertising
Pay-per-click or PPC is paid search advertising. (Think: The ads at the top of Google.) Your company bids for ad placement within a search engine’s sponsored sections, so that when someone searches for a specific phrase or keyword you’ve bid on, you show up. If that person clicks on your link, you pay a small fee. Ideally, the fee should be small compared to the ROI you get when that prospective client (or candidate if that’s what you’re looking for) converts to a lead on your website. Proper PPC should maximize exposure while limiting ad spend; one way to do this is to partner with a digital marketing firm that can help you do keyword research and test marketplace verticals to build a cost-effective PPC strategy that helps drive sales.
If you have more questions about where to start with your digital marketing, Parqa can help. Contact us today to learn more.
5 Steps To Start Digital Marketing for Your Recruiting Firm (Without Breaking The Bank)