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The State of Recruitment Marketing: Part Two – Connecting with Talent

Danielle McClowMarch 11, 2024ConnectionCRMEmployer BrandingEmployer Value PropositionOutcomeRecruitment Campaigns

To align talent teams with talent strategies for 2024, the State of Recruitment Marketing in 2024 report delves into every facet of the recruitment funnel – from awareness and connection to qualification and retention. This data-rich analysis offers a comprehensive view of challenges, opportunities, and future priorities for leading talent teams. Drawing insights from a survey encompassing over 450 HR and TA leaders, our four-part blog series dissects each stage, offering actionable strategies to stay ahead.

(If you missed it, catch up on part one, focusing on attracting talent here.) 

Now, let's delve into the second installment, where we zero in on the critical task of building connections with top talent. It's a vital component to navigating today's challenges and meeting the ever-evolving expectations of candidates.

Build candidate connections in your recruitment marketing strategy 

Industry experts anticipate a surge in hiring for 2024, especially among large enterprises (25k+ employees). Optimistically, 53% of C-level executives foresee an upswing in recruitment within their organizations. That means your team may be hiring at some point this year, even if you are not hiring today.

Priorities for the year identified in the report align with anticipated hiring needs. In 2024, the primary focus is garnering increased attention, interest, and conversions. 

To successfully connect with talent, organizations are honing in on the following key priorities:

  • Curtail manual processes. The top challenge (47%) when connecting with talent is managing systems/processes. 
  • Communicate your employer brand. One-quarter of survey participants report that effectively communicating the employer brand is a top concern. 

Develop content and messaging that resonates. The second highest-ranking challenge is developing relevant content and messaging for target talent groups.

State of Recruitment Marketing in 2024

The state of building connections: For many, it’s still manual 

In connecting with candidates to find the right hire, talent acquisition teams mustn’t waste time or lose great talent in the process.

Yet, so many manual tasks still exist within the recruiting world — and they could cost you. For nearly half (47%) of organizations, the top challenge when connecting with talent is managing manual systems and/or processes. Imagine the possibilities for your talent acquisition team if you could remove low-value, error-prone, manual tasks.

Leverage automation to build connections with talent 

Automation enables more personalized and consistent touchpoints with candidates and helps recruiters work faster and smarter by making processes more efficient and targeted. Automation can handle routine candidate communication, such as sending acknowledgment emails, status updates, and rejection notices. Smart automation can personalize communication with candidates by considering their stage in the hiring process, their specific inquiries and interests, and any preferred communication channels.

Every touchpoint with a candidate should be authentic and engaging while delivering on your employer branding and value proposition. Recruitment marketing technology with easy-to-use campaign tools such as smart list segmentation, drag-and-drop design, and if/then workflows make communicating with candidates simple but smart. Discover the impact of automation here.

Candidate connection starts with your employer brand perception

Your brand reputation can either help or hurt your ability to attract, hire, and retain right-fit talent. Twenty-five percent of TA professionals are challenged by effectively communicating their employer brand. Take the following steps to ensure your reputation accurately reflects who you are as an organization with a proven approach to employer branding

1. Evaluate alignment

Assess whether your employer brand accurately reflects your organization's identity today. Consider if you're attracting candidates who align with your values and if your messaging resonates with talent.

2. Understand your internal and external reputation

Recognize that your employees are ambassadors. Focus on managing your reputation internally to empower your employees to share positive stories externally.

3. Define your EVP and organization’s differentiation 

Your Employer Value Proposition (EVP) amplifies what you uniquely offer as an employer and what you expect in return. Ensuring your EVP is relevant, credible, aspirational, and differentiated from competitors is critical.

4. Demonstrate authenticity

When looking for a new role within an organization, candidates are also looking for evidence of the employer's brand promise coming to life. Organizations must back up their promises with concrete evidence to demonstrate their authenticity to job seekers.

Three ways to demonstrate authenticity through your employer brand:

  1. Showcase the experiences of current employees through testimonials and stories to provide an insider’s view of what it’s like to work for the organization.
  2. Share diverse perspectives to demonstrate a commitment to fostering an inclusive and supportive culture. 
  3. Highlight social initiatives and sustainability efforts to share the organization’s dedication to making a positive difference.

Today’s job seekers increasingly value organizations that prioritize social responsibility and ethical practices. The Net Impact survey indicates that 72% of new workforce entrants seek impactful jobs, emphasizing the allure of companies with meaningful corporate social responsibility programs. These job seekers are looking to work for organizations that positively impact society and demonstrate inclusivity, diversity, and sustainability. An authentic employer brand should highlight an organization’s social initiatives, community involvement, and commitment to ethical practices. This appeals to candidates who want to contribute to a greater purpose and feel good about their work.

5. Be specific

Instead of generic content, provide specific, authentic stories highlighting what truly sets your organization apart. Listen to recent hires and employees to understand why they chose your company — which leads to recruitment content marketing.

A solid recruitment content marketing strategy

This is the age of personalization, and candidates are more likely to be receptive to an organization that recognizes their individuality right from the get-go. Personalized outreach and recruitment provide a positive touch, working to deepen the connection between prospective employer and candidate. However, only 28% of organizations develop relevant content and messaging for target talent groups. To increase candidate engagement, talent teams should deliver targeted, high-quality content at the right time, on the right channel, and in the right format. 

What are the benefits of recruitment content marketing?

  • Increases brand awareness
  • Strengthens brand reputation
  • Enhances employer trust 

Recruitment content marketing focuses on attracting and engaging potential employees and engaging with current employees for retention. To see the best results, employers must segment these talent audiences and understand potential and/or current employees’ needs, aspirations, and career goals to create tailored messaging to engage and attract the right candidates.

How can you segment talent pools?

TA teams should think about how they want to segment talent pools (education level, skills, etc.) in order to meet organisational hiring goals. For example, if you are hiring for entry-level positions, creating a talent pool of early career candidates with little to no work experience is best. A candidate relationship management (CRM) system can then help your team engage with those segmented talent pools more effectively and efficiently. 

Within your CRM, you can group candidates based on similarities and let AI help you build targeted talent pools based on segmentation criteria such as:

  • Education level
  • Skills
  • Work experience
  • Interests
  • Location

The CRM system can save those target groups of candidates in folders, making it easier to then deliver relevant content and messaging in multiple formats, including drip campaigns, job alerts, SMS, and more. A smart CRM like Symphony Talent’s SFX will allow for these communications to be automated through workflows. Plus, a drag-and-drop editor makes it simple for users to customize messaging for each targeted group/talent pool. 

Though 59% of organizations use a CRM solution to manage the pipeline and engage with talent, many organizations lack an effective way to build relationships with current and potential candidates.

For those talent teams that leverage a CRM to power recruitment marketing efforts, the benefits range from lowering the cost of recruitment to increasing time to application. (Learn more about the ROI of Symphony Talent’s CRM here). 

About Symphony Talent

Talent teams set the tone for the candidate and employee experience — from initial contact to application and beyond. They are the gatekeepers for your employer brand and on the front lines of building the relationships and connections between candidate and employer. By combining proven technology and candidate engagement strategies with award-winning creative, talent teams can build trust and excitement within their talent networks.

Symphony Talent’s SFX workflow engine intelligently nurtures candidate pipelines with content, job recommendations, and other experiences based on candidates’ actions. Suppose a candidate views specific jobs or segmented pages on your career site or opts into a talent network form on a diversity page. In that case, SFX will trigger communication tailored to what that candidate will likely care about. Symphony Talent CRM clients benefit from a 50% reduction in time spent on administrative tasks, partly due to triggered workflows and templates. Learn more about our CRM here.

The tools you need to grow and retain top talent

Take a look at outcomes
Connection icon

Develop stronger relationships

Strong relationships and connections lead to better talent engagement and higher conversions.
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Raise awareness
Get in front of the right people, at the right time, with the right message. The result? Greater brand awareness and expanded right-fit talent network.
Build connections
Strong relationships and connections lead to better talent engagement and higher conversions.
Assess qualifications
Take the guesswork out of candidate selection with an objective view into a candidate’s skills, competencies, and culture fit.
Boost retention
Create more opportunities for the talent you hire to become loyal brand advocates who choose to grow with your organization.

Brand services

employer brand iconEmployer value proposition
Bring your EVP to life through powerful insights, creative, and validated messaging that connects with the talent you seek to attract and retain.
social content marketing iconSocial and content marketing
Candidates and employees are proactively engaging with companies across multiple channels. If organizations aren’t present, they’re not considered. We can help.
Recruitment campaign iconRecruitment campaigns
Leverage effective campaigns that flex across multiple channels, audiences, and touchpoints to drive impact and applications.
evp iconEmployer branding
Manage your Employer Brand for impact and effectiveness. Together we clarify your differentiators to connect with the right talent.
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Having trouble with your chatbot?
Help candidates get questions answered about your company, open roles, and more through a friendly chatbot on your career website.
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Who we are
Our core values are the foundational beliefs that define who we are.