It’s that time of year when everyone is thinking about what next year will bring. I would suggest that nowhere is this currently more prevalent than social media marketing, where there seems to be another predictions blog post everywhere I look. So rather than creating my own from scratch, I am going to select some of my favourites from this ebook, ‘Social Recruiting Predictions and Trends for 2014‘.
1. “You need to know all the platforms that your community visits and tap into the stream to find, identify and attract the best talent.” Lori Ruff, CEO, Integrated Alliances
“Social media serves to amplify real life”. I love this concept and I think it expresses very clearly why the use of social media is continuing to grow and grow. I do imagine that in the near future, using social media for both recruitment and marketing in general will become normal. It is getting there, but there’s still progress to be made. On the flip side, I think that Lori makes a good point in that it is important to actually understand social media and that those who do not understand it will not succeed. This means we really need to focus on really ensuring our clients understand why we do what we do.
Lori’s recommendations for channels to watch (Google+, Facebook, Instagram, Tumblr, Nimble.com and Triberr) are also interesting. In particular, I have been wondering if we should be thinking about Tumblr for future grad recruitment.
2. “True social media recruiting does not include simply posting jobs to social media sites such as Facebook or LinkedIn.” Steven Rothberg, President and Founder, CollegeRecruiter.com
It genuinely amazes me how many people still think this is a valid strategy. I think posting jobs is useful but it really needs to be part of a wider and much stronger content strategy. I really hope companies stop doing this soon (and if they don’t, we should start approaching them and showing them how we can help them do better…)
3. “Companies who are still resistant to social media in 2014 will need to begin embracing it without fear.” Katrina Collier, Speaker, Trainer and Writer, Winning Impression
One thing that came out of my recent strategy work that was quite interesting was that, even in the financial services industry, which used to be extremely controlling of employee activities on social media, there is a gradual shift towards openness. Companies that used to ban employees from mentioning their employer are now encouraging these same employees to promote their employer brand through social media. While usage varies from industry to industry, there is now a much wider acceptance of the value of social media.
There are still examples of companies getting it very wrong, (e.g. the recent J.P.Morgan Twitter Q&A incident) but the majority of these issues can be ignored by being considerate of your audience and posting sensibly. For most companies, the biggest damage now is likely to come as a result of not being part of the conversation.
Final thoughts: LinkedIn
It is interesting to note that there are two entirely conflicting approaches to LinkedIn:
- “LinkedIn will begin to decline in use because it is so saturated. There are new resources, services and strategies that can provide more success and at a lower cost per hire.” Jessica Miller-Merrell, President and CEO, Xceptional HR
- “LinkedIn is a hot, hot place to be and not to be ignored in 2014!” Viveka von Rosen, Founder, LinkedIntoBusiness
I can understand Jessica’s point. A lot of people find LinkedIn confusing and don’t use it to its full potential (or at all once they have created an account). It really doesn’t help that LinkedIn frequently carries out major overhauls with no explanation, which doesn’t create a great user experience. It also struggle with spam and abuse from recruiters, and LinkedIn’s recent efforts to prevent this have had very little impact.
However, I think Viveka is right in that there is still a lot of potential. We will have to make sure we are using LinkedIn intelligently, but I think there is still plenty of scope to get value from it. I agree with Jessica’s point that there is plenty of value to be gained from content marketing and producing ebooks, blogs, whitepapers, etc. But LinkedIn can be a great platform to distribute this content on.