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This Is how you really automate recruitment advertising

Erik SchmidtAugust 21, 2020AwarenessConnectionProgrammatic AdvertisingRecruitment Campaigns

In the hierarchy of overused workplace idioms, sitting somewhere between "done is better than perfect" and "think outside the box," is this inspirational nugget:

"Work smarter, not harder."

Sounds great. You know what would be even better? Not working at all. As a busy recruiter, sourcer, or talent acquisition pro with a bajillion crucial priorities, imagine how many important tasks you could cross off your list if you weren't bogged down with all the menial ones.

Take recruitment advertising, for example. The channels, content types, number of jobs, and employer branding possibilities are nearly endless. It's why programmatic recruitment advertising platforms (which are actually known as demand side platforms outside of talent acquisition) were invented. But the thing is, programmatic doesn't inherently mean automatic. If you're doing programmatic recruitment advertising, it probably looks something like this:

  • Checking in on progress and altering budgets at least once a day to ensure you're not overspending on a job that was already filled, or underspending on a top priority
  • Emailing numerous media vendors to adjust spend and replace content
  • Trying to track data from all your ads then aligning it with every other recruiting tactic
  • And, oh joy, doing it all over again for your next campaign

But the takeaway from today's programmatic advertising solutions? You're working smarter, but definitely still working. Because they're not fully automated. They're not totally hands off. And despite streamlining some areas of your ad campaigns, they've unfortunately also created an entirely new series of mundane tasks to perform Ñ and you're left following in poor Sisyphus's footsteps, endlessly pushing a boulder of busywork up a hill only to have it tumble back down when you near the top.

The solution? Stop pushing boulders altogether. Here's what a fully automated, truly seamless recruitment advertising campaign looks like, from start to finish, in SFX. It's beyond programmatic. It's automatic.

Sisyphus, eat your heart out.

Setting it up

Oh, just thought of another infamous workplace idiom: "time is money."

With SFX, we take that saying literally by automating every stage of a recruitment ad campaign with a dynamic, responsive system that accounts for everything you could think of (priority, volume, location, time-to-fill), so you're using your budget and resources as efficiently as possible.

Let's say you're in charge of talent acquisition at Ecolab and you need to hire service engineers, account managers, and pest control technicians. To launch a multi-channel campaign, just:

  • Set your monthly spend budget
  • Establish a spending priority and average time-to-fill for each job category
  • Select default media channels you want your ads to appear
  • Deliver content, like banners ads, to our team (and by the way, we do that too, because great tech needs great creative)

chrome-capture (1)

You can quickly assign and change the percentage of your budget that goes to certain media channels.

That's it it literally takes a few button clicks and a couple of minutes. Once you launch your campaign with those basic parameters, it's self-adaptive and will progressively work its way proportionately to all of your goals, spending your media resources only on the jobs you've listed, and only in the places that get you closer to your goals (more on how this all works later).
If you're wondering what kind of time savings automation like this provides, you're not alone. I asked Symphony Talent VP of Product Sean Quigley, and his response was reminiscent of something Doc Brown would say in Back To The Future: "Over the course of numerous campaigns and numerous years, essentially infinite amounts of time."

Great Scott, that's a lot. In normal, human terms, that translates to about 2-3 hours daily. Imagine what you could accomplish in a week with all that time back on your clock. In a month. In a year.

Launching content

OK, so you've launched your new ad campaign. Several things will happen simultaneously (none of which you have to lift a finger for):

  • The campaign's job listings, which are integrated with your jobs data and updated daily, will launch onto all the preselected pay per click (PPC) media sites within the entire programmatic ecosystem, like Indeed, Appcast, Glassdoor, and ZipRecuiter (any vendor that offers PPC advertising, SFX can tap into ... literally more than 8,000)Screen Shot 2020-08-18 at 3.18.11 PM

Once a campaign is launched, the pre-created banners will begin to appear based on location and search patterns.

  • Precreated banner ads will launch and be shown to users all over the web who have the right attributes for the job. This is based on user behavior on the web and can also be based on whether people have looked at your site (think that pair of shoes that's been following you around the web for the past week)
  • Google Adwords will appear for all targeted and related keywords associated with the specific jobs in your campaign (the copy for this is created once and then reused whenever certain campaigns are triggered)

Screen Shot 2020-08-18 at 3.18.39 PM

Google Adwords will also launch based on search queries.

Optimizing campaigns

Alright, your new ads and jobs are out in the universe. But what about all of your other running campaigns? How do you adjust your spend to reflect the additional openings? And how do you make sure the spend is being used effectively? Well, you don't.

You do nothing.

Going back to the Ecolab example, if you set "service engineer" as your highest priority with the fastest time-to fill, the platform will automatically spend more budget on ads for that job. After all those positions are filled, the spend will reallocate to your other openings so you're always investing in acquiring the applicants you need the most. Budget across your other campaigns will also adjust accordingly.

Screen Shot 2020-08-19 at 10.30.33 AM

In this dashboard, you can see how much of your budget is going to certain jobs and certain media channels. If you need to update one area of your campaign, the rest will automatically adjust.

Additionally, SFX communicates with all the media vendors directly. Instead of calling or emailing five different companies separately, all you need to do is adjust one number (like your goal time-to-fill) in the platform and the rest happens instantly.

And that's why SFX is beyond programmatic. It's running the media placements and maximizing spend to the most effective channels, yes. But it's also managing your entire budget for all of your jobs and automatically adjusting based on priority level and time-to-fill goals to guarantee nothing is being wasted.

Tracking everything

Now that your campaign is over, you're probably wondering what you can do to improve next time. When you're measuring recruitment advertising, you should be asking yourself three questions:

  • Am I on budget?
  • Am I getting quality applicants?
  • How does this spend to value compare to my other tactics?chrome-capture (1)-2

Track your budget, applicants, and hires across all your campaigns in one place. Easy.

Most platforms will only answer one or two of these things, but because SFX is also a full recruitment marketing platform and CRM, when you look at your ad campaign analytics, you'll be able to see it alongside everything else you're doing to find talent: organic social media, talent network promotions, SMS campaigns and not only see it, but also receive intelligent suggestions to optimize what you're doing.

For example, if the system knows that you have enough candidates for engineers, it will reduce spend on ads and instead notify you to send an email to your pipeline nudging them towards an application. This is how you continue to evolve, transform, pivot, improve. This is how you make each ad campaign better and more efficient than the last. And it happens seamlessly.

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