News & Blog

14 November

Creating job ads that get the good candidates excited

Great candidates are out there. If your job ads aren’t finding them, it's time to re-evaluate your advertising strategy.
Buying behaviours have changed significantly over the past few years and will continue to do so as more and more of the world heads mobile. To think otherwise is naive. In just 3 years we've seen a shift from applications being received via email to a huge number of applicant tracking systems, all vying to make your shortlisting process easier and faster.

But even the best technology solution in the world is useless if your job advertising is still circa 2010 instead of 2017. Effective recruitment starts with a great advertising campaign. If you nail this, you will have an abundance of talent to choose from.

So how are companies attracting talent in 2017 and improving their talent acquisition?

1. Define your target audience.

There are 5 generations of job seekers in the workforce at present and how they go about finding jobs is VASTLY different. A one-size-fits-all approach is going to deliver you mediocre results at best, no results at worst. If you first understand who your target audience is, you can start to build an advertising campaign that is going to reach those people where they love, work and play.

• iGen, aka Generation Z: born 1996 and after
• Millennials, aka Generation Y: born 1977 to 1995
• Generation X: born 1965 to 1976
• Baby Boomers: born 1946 to 1964
• Traditionalists: born 1945 and before

2. Once you've defined your job seeking demographic, post ads where they are.

That needs little explanation. But to state to obvious, baby boomers are unlikely on Instagram or Snapchat. By comparison, you GenZ won't be looking for jobs in newspapers. Put your ad where your target audience is and you are halfway there.

3. Job ads should excite and entice. Not bore people to tears.

If your adverts read like a job description, listing bullet point after bullet point of skills and criteria needed, stop it. Seriously. We get it, you're busy, you don't have time to write something enticing but long job description-esk ads don't work. Find a company or contractor who can provide help in writing your ads and ensuring you are appealing to your target audience. Your job ads should move someone and motivate them enough to make them want to apply.

4. Open channels for communication

It's time to ditch the 30 question-long application form. You are time poor - news flash, so is the rest of the world. Your candidates included. The attitude of "if they are interested enough they will apply" was OK 2 years ago but it's not the way of the future. If only 20% of the market are active Job seekers, the 80% you actually want to talk to are generally happily employed, are busy and are leading fulfilled lives, BUT they would be open to a discussion about the opportunity you have. So make it easy for them to contact you! Forcing them to prepare a cv and answer 30 questions about experience will turn them right off.
Consider enabling job seekers to apply with their Linked In profile or allocate 1-2 hours a day to being available for an online question forum (there are a few platforms that allow a "live chat" function.) It's a non obtrusive way for people to open the lines of communication and see where things can lead.

5. Never underestimate the importance of a great looking job ad

Like a shiny new Mustang or a Harry Winston ring, people are drawn to bright sparkly things. If your job ad is visually dull, lacks emotional content and doesn't show you've made an effort, it will be skipped over. In a cluttered world with over 4,000 advertising messages crossing your path a day (yes, per DAY!) your advert needs to stand out. Let's refer back to point #3 - your ad should excite and entice and that covers both the look as well as the content. Engage a designer to create templates for you that appeal to your target audience (refer point #1) and you will reap the rewards.

Talented people are out there and the ones you want to hire are looking. Don't give them a reason to overlook your ad. Great ads will deliver great people.
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