News & Blog

12 December

Recruiting for hard-to-fill roles with Facebook advertising: A Big Splash True Story.

Tiny target audience? As part of a multi-pronged approach, Social media advertising can be the gift that keeps on giving.
When you're an industry frontrunner, you'd expect to attract a few applicants on the strength of your name alone. Unless, that is, your industry is a niche, and your talent pool, similarly tiny.

This was the challenge faced by our client, Victorian-based coin auction house Downies Coins, when they needed to bring on a new pair of hands. Our solution? A multi-channelled, yet finely targeted, advertising strategy.

Given today’s fragmented media environment, a multi-pronged approach is something we’ve found to be extremely valuable. And it makes sense: as the media landscape evolves, your audience’s attention is spread more thinly across a variety of platforms. But if you’ve made the decision to cast the net wider to accommodate for this, your work still isn’t quite complete. Rather than resting on the laurels of your analytical thinking, you also need a canny advertising strategy that will ensure that your message lands where it’s wanted when it arrives.

Downies had their work cut out for them. They needed a Numismatist: someone who studies and collects rare coins. A tough position to fill. The ideal candidate had to have the mindset of an art dealer who could appreciate the beauty of a collectible object, but also recognise its financial value. Their previous recruitment strategy of advertising on job boards wasn’t delivering the right results; the skill set and interests were far too specific for the broad audience visiting the sites.

Job boards might seem the obvious choice, and in a lot of instances, they work. But for niche roles, they tend not to deliver. Fear not, though - there’s a silver lining. If a role calls for an applicant with particular interests or values, it’s a perfect candidate for some social media advertising. And the results can make it a very worthwhile process.

Working in consultation with Downies’ HR and Marketing/Communications teams, we devised a one-week social media campaign that would only reach a very specific market of suitable individuals. This, combined with advertising in specialist magazines, would enable Downies to speak only to those who have the right skills and interest in the role.

The campaign targeted people in Australia listing coin collecting, coin trading, antiques and/or art history as their interests – which equated to a potential reach of 54,000 Facebook users. According to Facebook ad reporting, the ad garnered 179 website clicks, and delivered a reach of 7,421 people, resulting in dramatically increased website views that week.

Their total advertising strategy resulted in 8 applications and 3 interviews with candidates, which meant Downies was able to pick from the most skilled and directly-relevant candidates to fill the vacancy. Whilst the candidate hired did not come from the Facebook ad itself, the decision to use social media advertising still brought great benefit in strengthening Downies’ employer brand. “The Facebook ad campaign worked well for us as it encouraged visits to our career website and was a good way to raise awareness of our brand as a potential employer, “ notes Jo Watson, HR Advisor. “The quality of applications we received was higher than we had seen in the past.”

Downies' experience serves as a timely reminder not to confuse a small pool of applicants with a poor response. When it's quality over quantity that you're after, with a finely-targeted, multi-channelled approach, you're on the money.

If you think a good digital strategy can help you (and it probably can), give us a call or reach out through our website.

Still curious? This isn't the only reason we'd recommend social media to attract talent. Check out our October post on Social Recruiting for more.
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