6 Mistakes You’re Making With Your Employment Brand and How to Fix Them

Debra Auerbach

In today’s job market, it’s not enough to offer competitive wages and great benefits if you want to woo top talent. In order to stand out among the sea of prospective employers, you also need to have a strong employment brand. 

Just as consumers shop around for products, candidates are shopping around for an employer who shares their values and offers a culture where they can thrive professionally. If you’re not taking steps to market your company just like a consumer brand would, you’re missing out on chances to strengthen your employment brand – and snag the best talent.

Here are six mistakes you might be making with your employment brand and how to fix them:

1. You’re Not Using Your Employees as Brand Ambassadors
There’s a reason why company review sites are successful: Job seekers want to hear the raw, unfiltered truth about working for a company – straight from employees themselves. So, instead of you telling your company’s story, encourage your employees to tell it for you. For example, encourage your employees to use custom hashtags to tweet about what it’s like to work at your organization, and share these posts on your career site. Or, host a Facebook Live event where employees share their personal and professional stories. These tactics resonate much more than a generic, corporate paragraph about culture on a company’s website.   

2. Your Career Site is Dry and Impersonal
According to CareerBuilder research, 89 percent of job seekers say an employer's career site is important for getting key information, yet only 45 percent of candidates say they can typically tell what it would be like to work for a company based on its career site. Your career site is a perfect place to engage with potential employees and give them an insider’s view of life at your company. One great way to do this is by using video to showcase employees, work culture and your office environment. And while having a well-produced video is a plus, you can make just as big an impact with videos taken from an employee’s smartphone. 

3. You’re Not Re-Engaging With Candidates
You probably get a ton of promotional emails from companies trying to entice you into buying their product or service. You should be doing the same to candidates in your talent pipeline. They may not be currently in the running for a position, but they shouldn’t be ignored. In fact, frequently and effectively communicating with your talent pool is a great way to build brand equity, so when the right position comes along, they have positive sentiment toward your employment brand and may be more inclined to consider the position.

Yet just communicating with them isn’t enough – you have to share information that is relevant to their skills and career interests. And consider HOW they like to receive communication. CareerBuilder research found that millennials significantly prefer email communications (57 percent) over phone calls (31 percent) and are 2-3 times more likely to prefer alternative communication methods (text messaging, social media messaging and video calling) compared to Gen X and baby boomer generations.

4. You’re Not Tooting Your Own Horn
It’s no surprise that negative publicity can damage a company’s reputation, but it can hurt a company’s employment brand as well. According to a recent CareerBuilder survey, 71 percent of U.S. workers would not apply to a company experiencing negative press. While you personally may not have much control over unwelcome publicity, you can actively promote the positive news surrounding your organization. The survey found that nearly 4 in 5 employers who have experienced positive press have seen beneficial impacts such as more job applications, more job candidate referrals from employees, and more job offers being accepted.

5. You’re Not Taking Social Media Seriously
Social media is a great way to engage with prospective employees, but if you’re not paying attention to how your employer brand is being portrayed on social media channels, you could be turning off candidates. According to CareerBuilder research, 60 percent of employers don't monitor their employer presence/brand on social media. Of those who do, 68 percent take steps to encourage positive reviews while 16 percent just react to negative information.

6. You’re Writing Cookie Cutter Job Postings 
 Don’t fall into the trap of writing boring, bland job postings just to check them off your to-do list. Instead, job postings should be viewed as a marketing tool used to sell the position – and your company – to the prospective employee. Incorporate photos and videos that bring your company to life, show some personality in the job description, and perhaps most importantly, be real. Don’t sell them on an employment brand that doesn’t actually exist. 

Get more branding tips: Download the free guide: 6 Ways to Recruit Like a Marketer 



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