Is The Company Blog Part of Your Recruitment Strategy?
It's widely known these days that blogging can be an effective tool for any business when it comes to attracting new clients.
A blog can be used to establish your credentials in many ways - and shouting about wins, sharing latest information and best practice, and recording the company's participation in industry and community events are just a few of these.
But what about using your blog to help attract the sort of people you want to work for you? In our experience this tends to be something that far fewer organisations do.
So here's a call to employers to think about devoting more time and resources to blogging. It's true that it takes longer to write a blog post than it does a Tweet or Facebook / LinkedIn post, but then it's a more permanent form of communication - and, as we'll see below, finding interesting and compelling content for your blog needn't be a massive time drain.
First, to be sure that you easily pick up the rewards for your efforts,
Connect Your Blog to the Recruitment Process
Be sure that people can access the following information easily from your blog:
- current vacancies
- application instructions
- how your recruitment process typically works
- any HR contacts
Promote Your Culture
Your blog can give insight into what it's like to work at your company. It's very easy to to create staff profiles, Q&A sessions or interviews, or 'day in the life' articles - or videos. Remember that blogs are typically more informal than other parts of a website, so let your team come across as they really are, and show the people behind the name.
Include What You Do Offline
If you're looking for people at a more junior level then you could well be active on the university circuit or at job fairs, and you might also be attending networking events, conferences and expos. You can use the blog as part of your marketing and awareness efforts to brief people ahead of the event, then report on what happened and who you talked to. Notice how this all writes itself: all you need to do is keep a record of what you're already doing. Taking photos, keeping contact details and then reaching out to people after the event with a link to the blog will hopefully get comments going on social media (getting attention from that person's online network) or the blog itself.
Reflect the Mood of the Industry
Much - in fact most - of what people post on social media is lost as the discussion moves on. However you can use your blog as an aggregator to present crowd sourced views from Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn. All you need to do is keep records of interesting remarks and posts and the person who made them. Keeping their details allows you to let them know when you publish your article, and you might be able to start a discussion on your blog.
Can You Get a Discussion Going?
Think about content that is going to provoke a response, and invite your readers to get involved and share their thoughts, opinions and experiences. You no doubt already keep an eye on what happens in your industry. If you don't always have time for a full post about the latest issues and developments, then it's OK to post a link to an article you spotted that you thought was interesting, add your comments and response and then solicit other views. If you let the other blogger know you liked what they've written, you might find you get a response from them on their own blog.
Build your own Blogger Network
The technique mentioned just above is one method for trying to build a network through your blog. You can take it a step further and encourage guest posts at all levels, from junior to senior. At a junior level, many universities and colleges have their own blogs. Don't forget to reach out to academic societies and student groups too. Can you interview any of the members? Can you ask them to participate in a survey? You'll be building strong connections not just online but offline through this activity. At more senior levels, you will find that many people have their own blog (in fact, it's something we advocate for anyone in digital). Ask them if they'd be interested in a guest post - or a post swap.
In all of this, try to focus on making the communication two-way. From bulletin boards, through forums, and now into social media platforms, the most popular forms of internet communication have always been collaborative. People love to talk, so make sure that what you do encourages that. Act as the facilitator and keep them talking!