How to promote a job ad

Even the most compelling job advertisement can fail to attract the interest of top candidates if it isn’t widely promoted. Hence developing a strong promotion strategy that ensures your job ad is seen by the greatest number of candidates, while also standing out from similar roles being advertised by other companies, is essential to get done right.

An effective promotion strategy doesn’t hinge on a single tactic. Rather, a multi-faceted approach is needed to give your job ads maximum market reach.

Be sure your job advertisement speaks directly to candidates

The best candidates are highly sought after, so your job ad needs to be exciting, compelling and very convincing about what makes your organisation so attractive, and why the role is an opportunity too good to pass by.

The only way to do this is by casting a critical eye over your job ads. Remember, you’re not just outlining a role - you are marketing a career opportunity. Trim the wording back (busy professionals are pressed for time). Cut to what really matters. And above all, speak directly to the candidate.

Rather than using phrases such as “The successful applicant will possess…” talk one-on-one to candidates. Phrases like “Here is your opportunity to make a mark with your outstanding accounting skills” engage with the candidate, creating the impression upfront that this is the job they’ve been looking for.

Skip the gimmicky job titles

How many people type “Administration Genius” into a Google search? Chances are, not many. Yet plenty of ads feature gimmicky job titles that don’t make it immediately clear to candidates if the role is relevant to them. Nor are these sorts of job titles likely to rank highly on search engines.

With so many job ads competing for attention online, the search engine optimisation (SEO) qualities of your job advertisement cannot be overlooked. Maximise SEO by being very clear about the nature of the role on offer. “Senior Personal Assistant” is likely to achieve far higher rankings on search engines than “Office Guru”.

Go where the candidates are – social media

It’s a highly competitive world out there in cyber space, and while online job boards have the potential to reach a large audience, there is no guarantee your job ad will be noticed by the type pf candidate you’re hoping to attract.

That’s not to say job boards should be avoided. However, effectively promoting your job ad means taking it to where the people are. And that’s social media.

Facebook, LinkedIn, Snapchat, Twitter and even Instagram can all introduce your job advertisement to a far wider, and potentially more relevant audience.

Consider asking senior members of the hiring team to include a post featuring the job ad on their personal Facebook page. It can be a way of reaching suitably qualified jobseekers. Or write an article on LinkedIn about the company, how great it is to work for, and mention available roles with links to the job advertisements.

Add a visual element to your job ad

Research from software advisory firm Software Advice shows 51 per cent of jobseekers are more attracted to a company that has job postings with visual elements – images or videos, than to a company that doesn't.

If you’re unsure about what the focus of your visual element should be, the same research found that the top three topics that elicit most interest among candidates are the company itself, other employees and workplace look and feel. That makes it worth focusing on themes like “Meet our team” or “A day in the life of XYZ Company”. Whether it’s a quick video ad or effective call to action imagery, adding a visual element could be the key to making your job ad stand out from the crowd.

Consider an employee referral portal

It’s a fair bet your employees know plenty of like-minded people working in the same industry. This opens up more possibilities for your employees to refer candidates who may be a perfect match for the organisation.

Tap into this rich source of referrals by adding job ads to the company’s intranet. Or set up an employee referral portal. Post job ads as positions become available, and consider a referral reward program that encourages employees to spread the word among their network of contacts.

With some creativity and planning, and by casting your net wide, a single job advertisement can be used across multiple mediums to reach a broad audience of candidates, and boost the likelihood of connecting with the professional who is right for the role.

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