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Decoding the Future of Recruitment Marketing: 7 Key Takeaways

Danielle McClowFebruary 20, 2024AnalyticsAwarenessProgrammatic Advertising

In a recent webinar on the future of recruitment marketing, industry experts Mike Drayer and Chandler White discussed the evolving landscape of data-driven recruitment approaches. 

Watch the full, on-demand session:

Key takeaways for recruitment marketing:

Industry evolution

To kick it off, our experts reviewed the major digital marketing and advertising milestones spanning 30 years — from the advent of internet cookies in 1994 to the current era of generative AI.

  • Major milestones: At the turn of the century, everything happened with the .com boom. Technology seemingly accelerated daily, programmatic ad tech was born, and we had a period of explosive growth. 
  • Current disruption: Data privacy continues to be a top concern, starting with GDPR in 2018 and going through 2025’s EU A.I. Act. By this year's end, Google Chrome is expected to deprecate thirdparty cookies. In today’s privacy era, society has become much quicker in identifying potential risks or challenges and putting checks and balances on technology.

Data ownership explained

Next, Drayer and White broke down data ownership through the explanation of cookie types. As an overview, cookies are pieces of code that sit behind a web page within the browser, and they collect and store data about a user's online activity. 

Initially, cookies were used to see if visitors returned to the website for the first time. From there, it grew to where the type of data being stored can be anything from the location of the user, the behavior on the site, the content that they view, and the text-based searches performed on a site itself. A vast amount of information can be stored in these cookies, and this data can be used for a lot of different purposes.

Data overview: 

  • Third-party data: Collected by external sources.
  • First-party data: Self-collected and owned.
  • Zero-party data: Voluntarily provided by users.

Learn more about cookies and recruitment marketing data here. 

Navigating the changing landscape

Our recruitment marketing and AdTech experts are often asked, “Why should I care about these data privacy topics?” 

Drayer explains that the HR and talent acquisition community has experienced seismic shifts within the past several years, affecting access to top talent and internal disruptions, economic turbulence, resource constraints, and more. 

Why does it matter to talent acquisition?

  • Industry dissatisfaction: Symphony Talent’s 2023 Talent Acquisition Outlook revealed a 212% increase in dissatisfaction with talent acquisition efforts.
  • Navigating technology: HR leaders find navigating the vast landscape of talent acquisition technologies challenging. 
  • Data privacy's role: Evolving data privacy requirements complicate an already challenging landscape.

Recommended approach

Talent acquisition professionals need solutions and technologies that provide a more comprehensive and intelligent approach to talent acquisition. 

Start with compliance and data 

As a talent acquisition professional, you are the gatekeepers for your organizational and candidate data. It’s your responsibility to ensure that the vendors you’re working with have: 

  1. A data privacy strategy and approach that aligns with data privacy laws. 
  2. Plan to move away from third-party data and prioritize responsible marketing.

Then, focus on how you connect with candidates 

The evolution of data privacy is an opportunity for recruitment teams to leverage data to treat candidates like humans once again. Technology still plays a critical role in the recruitment process, but leading talent acquisition teams use it to connect with candidates on a deeper level.

  • Treat candidates as humans: Move beyond data points and embrace a humanized approach.
  • Authenticity over automation: Redefine marketing and advertising in the new reality by understanding and connecting with candidates on a deeper level.

Learn more about how to leverage talent data to drive personalized approaches here. 

Next steps for your recruitment marketing strategy 

Move forward with this checklist: 

  • Self-evaluation: Conduct a thorough evaluation of your compliance status and technological adaptability.
  • Strategic goal setting: Define strategic goals and align them with relevant KPIs.
  • Data ownership: Establish a foundation for collecting and owning first and zero-party data.
  • Responsible data practices: Commit to handling and using the data collected from job seekers responsibly.
  • Strategic questioning: Pose thoughtful questions to gather meaningful data.
  • Individual analysis: Focus on understanding who job seekers are rather than viewing them as mere data points.
  • Humanized approach: Aim to humanize your recruitment approach and create deeper connections with candidates.

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