Social-Recruiting-A-Guide-to-Finding-the-Ideal-Candidates

Social Recruiting: A Guide to Finding the Ideal Candidates

So, how did you land your current job? Friend referral? Indeed.com? Or did a recruiter reach out to

So, how did you land your current job? Friend referral? Indeed.com? Or did a recruiter reach out to you on LinkedIn? If it’s the last one, congratulations, you have first-hand experience of social recruiting.

Social media recruiting has become the new norm for HR professionals like you, saving you time, and budget, and guaranteeing excellent results.

Using social media for recruiting has been a hot trend for almost a decade now, with recruiters and talent acquisition specialists actively interacting with job applicants and scouting for the ideal candidate on LinkedIn, Twitter, and other social platforms.

In this article, we’re going to explore all things social recruiting from its benefits to 10 successful approaches you can follow to improve your social media recruiting strategy.

What is Social Recruiting?

Social recruiting, otherwise known as social media hiring, involves leveraging social media platforms to advertise job openings, scout for potential candidates, and promote your company culture to engage with job seekers.

This approach to hiring is not just about posting vacancies. Basically, it’s a strategic method that emphasizes building your employer branding and nurturing relationships with prospective employees.

But why is social recruiting important? Well, almost everyone looking for a job is on social media these days.

A mind-blowing 86% of job seekers now use social media in their job search, not only to discover new opportunities but also to apply directly through these platforms, interact with work-related content, and gain insights into the company culture. On the other side, a remarkable 92% of employers use social media to recruit talent.

We have all been seeking a new job at least once in our careers. Could you think of a better way to get a glimpse of what everyday life in a company looks like than checking their LinkedIn page or Instagram account? Or rather, searching for their employees’ — a.k.a. your future colleagues — work-related content?

How does Social Recruiting Work?

Social recruitment taps into the power of social media to spread job opportunities far and wide.

Unlike traditional methods, where costs can skyrocket, social recruiting is more cost-effective since there’s no pricey pay-per-click fee. It’s all about taking advantage of your social strategy not only for marketing but also for HR purposes.

To be specific, social recruiting works like this. First of all, you start by posting the job on your company’s social accounts, for example on LinkedIn and Facebook.

Then, your employees and other supportive followers get the word out by sharing the post via their accounts, which quickly multiplies your audience.

Also, you can directly reach out to qualified candidates through inbox messages and tweets about this job with trending hashtags on X (Twitter) to reach a wider, non-follower audience.

However, to make a good first impression on your candidates, you can take care of your social media presence as well and post engaging content. This could be employee photos and videos that showcase your company culture.

This way, you position your company as a great place to work and attract more applicants organically, boosting your chances of finding the ideal candidates.

Now, let’s move on to the perks you can get by following a social recruitment process.

The Benefits of Social Recruiting

The advantages of social media recruitment are various and essential for a business nowadays. We summed up the 7 most important ones below.

1. Modern Recruitment Adaptation

Social recruiting is marking a shift from traditional, often costly methods to a more dynamic, cost-effective approach where recruiters have complete control.

By using social media for recruitment, you can communicate your open positions across extensive professional networks with a simple share button.

Social recruiting is about engaging with a tech-savvy workforce, where they spend their online time using direct messages, social posts, and multimedia content to showcase company culture.

Thereby, social recruiting has to do with attracting talent in a space that’s already a daily part of their lives — the online world.

2. Tapping Gen-Z & Millennial Preferences

Social recruiting aligns perfectly with Gen-Z and Millennials who are digital natives, preferring online communities and real-time engagement.

In fact, Gen-Z and Millennials count 124,9 social media users only in the US for 2023, a number that is projected to keep increasing until 2027.

Social Media Users by Generation

Gen-Z and Millennials turn to social media for instant access to job opportunities and information about the companies that post jobs.

By adopting social recruiting, a business can reach young talent and leverage the casual, interactive nature of social platforms to communicate their values, such as supporting work/life balance which is an important factor of these two generations, according to a recent Deloitte survey:

“They are reprioritizing the importance of work, with a much stronger focus on achieving better work/life balance.”

Social recruiting is a strategy that resonates with these younger candidates, providing an authentic glimpse into the workplace culture and enabling a seamless, relatable recruitment experience aligned with their preferences.

3. Cost-Efficient Recruiting

As we mentioned above, using social recruiting can reduce your cost-per-hire primarily because it leverages the organic reach of social networks, bypassing the steep fees of traditional job boards.

It’s where the online word of mouth begins. You post a vacancy on your official social media pages and your followers and employees do the rest for you. They share it with their network or send it directly as referrals to their friends who are on the lookout for a new job and ta-da! Your job post’s visibility and reach are increasing rapidly!

Moreover, social media allows for targeted communication, connecting directly with candidates who align with your company’s culture and values, thus streamlining the recruitment process and reducing hiring costs.

4. Reaching Passive Talent

Social recruiting excels in connecting with those who aren’t actively seeking a job but are open to opportunities — the passive candidates.

Traditional recruitment often misses this group because passive talent doesn’t browse job boards but social media allows job posts to appear alongside their content feed, especially on LinkedIn. When they apply, that means something intrigued them in that new role. They don’t just want to leave their current company.

Plus, engaging content about a company’s culture can pique the curiosity of those who hadn’t thought about changing jobs, subtly inviting them to explore new opportunities within this company.

5. Elevating Employer Brand

With a social recruitment strategy, you can turn your company’s social media accounts into a showcase highlighting its values and people.

Through consistent and engaging posts, stories, employee testimonials, and behind-the-scenes glimpses, you can build a narrative that appeals to job seekers, portraying your company as an employer people want to work for.

This not only attracts active job seekers but also embeds the company’s image in the minds of passive candidates for future opportunities. A strong healthy brand on social media can thus attract higher quality candidates.

6. Real-Time Candidate Engagement

Social recruiting offers the unique advantage of real-time candidate engagement, which traditional methods can’t match.

Through social media, recruiters and talent acquisition specialists can interact instantly with potential candidates, answering questions, providing insights, and establishing two-way communication.

Whether it’s through comments on a post or direct messaging, social recruiting allows companies to engage with candidates as soon as their interest is sparked, fostering a human connection.

7. Championing Diverse Hiring

It’s a fact that 84% of HR professionals worry their organization’s current recruitment and hiring tools aren’t reaching diverse candidates. However, social recruiting is a game-changer for championing diverse hiring practices.

By casting a wider net across the various social platforms, companies tap into a rich, heterogeneous pool of talent that transcends geographical, social, and cultural boundaries.

With 76% of job seekers reporting that a diverse workforce is an important factor when evaluating companies and job offers, you see that being able to reach a diverse talent pool is of the essence for your company to be considered a great place to work.

So, after all these advantages, don’t you think that it’s time you give social recruiting a place in your hiring processes?

Let’s see together some strategies that can help you.

10 Social Media Recruiting Strategies

Are you wondering how to do social recruiting? Well, you’ll be surprised by the variety of strategies you can follow to use social media for recruitment.

We did the work for you and we analyze below the 10 best social recruiting approaches to begin with.

1. Authentic Employer Branding

For starters, authentic employer branding is the cornerstone of successful social recruiting. It’s about showcasing the true essence of your company’s culture and values with transparency on social media. As Jobvite puts it delicately “Companies with a strong employer brand do a great job of explaining why they’re a great place to work”.

After all, authenticity is what social media users crave. And this openness resonates with job seekers, who are increasingly searching for workplaces that can align with their personal values.

By accurately representing what it’s like to work at your company, your potential candidates can understand if they’re a good fit, thus reducing the likelihood of turnover.

Additionally, a strong, genuine employer brand can turn current employees into brand ambassadors. Their personal testimonials and shared experiences are invaluable in attracting like-minded candidates, thus reinforcing the efficiency and effectiveness of social recruiting.

2. Engaging Employee Stories & Testimonials

As we’re on the subject, engaging employee stories and testimonials can significantly boost your social recruiting efforts. It’s a form of employee advocacy — buzzword, yeah, but it’s a fruitful strategy.

When current employees share their genuine experiences and express their enthusiasm for their roles and the company culture, it humanizes your business and adds a layer of trust and relatability.

Semrush Employee Advocacy Post

Source: LinkedIn

We know that companies often advertise themselves as “a great place to work”, or “amazing team”, or — worse — “big family”. That’s why we’re skeptical about it. We don’t believe it completely.

However, such personal accounts can illustrate true work/life balance and real growth opportunities within the company, inspiring candidates who are a cultural fit, without disbelief.

Also, employee advocacy posts, like sharing job openings or promoting an event amplify the reach of your activities on social media, meaning more job seekers see what your company is doing.

3. Swift Quality Responses

Quick reflexes are mandatory for a positive social recruiting strategy. Swift, personalized responses cultivate a positive hiring experience with your candidates.

Today that we’re all online 24/7, a timely response signals respect for the candidate’s time and interest and can set the tone for the entire recruitment process.

Ghosting a talent for days and then one day showing up in their inbox again is frustrating candidates and damages your reputation.

via GIPHY

When a company quickly replies to queries or applications on social media with thoughtful, informative answers, it not only boosts the employer’s reputation but also engages the candidate more deeply.

This responsiveness can help you grab the attention of talented professionals who have numerous job offers on their plate.

It’s a deciding factor to choose between multiple opportunities. It shows that your company is committed to efficient communication, establishing a human connection up front which can be a strong draw for top talent.

4. Targeted Ads & Analytics

Targeted ads about job openings can boost your social recruiting and multiply the number of applications not only on social media but also on your website’s career page. This is a great approach on LinkedIn and Facebook to increase the reach of your job posts significantly but stay focused on the target group of candidates you’re aiming for. And with a lower cost than getting an ad on a job board.

Also, by analyzing the insights you’ll gain from these ad campaigns you can go a bit further and tailor your next campaigns to reach the exact demographic that aligns with the job requirements and company culture.

This analytics enables you to monitor the performance of your ads and social content, understand where the best candidates are coming from, and continuously adjust your tactics for maximum impact.

Bonus: Learn more on Facebook analytics and the metrics you should track 

5. HR & Marketing Collabs

When HR and marketing collaborate together, you have recruitment marketing at its finest! These two teams can join forces to make social recruiting work like magic.

Namely, marketing expertise can help craft compelling narratives and engaging content that accurately reflects the company’s culture, which HR can then use to attract potential candidates.

This partnership ensures that your employer brand is not only attractive but also consistent across all platforms, increasing brand awareness and social media engagement.

Marketers can employ sophisticated tools, like social media monitoring tools to track the performance of the hiring campaigns, while HR provides insights into the type of candidates needed.

We elaborate on that below.

6. Have Candidate Personas

To lead all your social recruiting efforts, you have to create the ideal candidate persona for each role you’re recruiting for.

You have to know the personality traits and professional qualifications you’re searching for to craft compelling social media messages, advertise your job posts to the right audience, and even write the position description.

Social Recruiting Personas Example

Source: LinkedIn

The more thorough the personas are, the better targeting you’ll be able to do with social recruiting.

7. Social Listening to Spot Already Interested Candidates

Moreover, you can leverage social listening to find job seekers already interested in the roles you’re hiring for! How? Let’s explain.

You can use a social listening tool like Mentionlytics to spot all social mentions of the positions you’re hiring by monitoring keywords like “digital marketing manager”, “software engineer”, or anything.

Then, you can narrow down your results into the geographic region you’re operating into and see all job seekers asking about open positions in such roles through their posts. You can reach out to them by DM or leave a comment.

Simultaneously, to reach passive candidates for your open positions you can use social listening to monitor other important keywords – topics in your industry, like “remote working”, “Great Reshuffle”, and more to take part in ongoing conversations to improve your brand awareness and stay relevant.

8. Simplify the Application Process

We can’t stress this point more. You must have a simple application process to make your social recruiting work. Keep it as straightforward as possible.

Don’t require job applicants to fill out the same information on multiple forms.

Make sure your application submission page works without bugs and has a speedy response. Don’t redirect your applicants many times, it confuses people and ruins your social recruiting efforts. Most of all, ensure that your page is mobile-friendly.

9. Set Goals

This is another cliché, but we have to remind you that without an objective you can fall off the track. Before starting your social recruiting strategies, you have to set up some measurable goals to guide your actions.

For example, getting 50 applications for an open position from social media channels doesn’t require as much energy and budget as getting 250. For the first case, just posting it for free on LinkedIn might do the work. But for the second? You might have to consider allocating some budget to promote it.

Keep your goals in mind.

10. Make Sure You’re on the Right Platforms

Last, we want you to remember that you should be on the social media channels where your ideal candidate is spending most of their online time. For example, if you’re looking for a marketer, chances are you’ll find them on LinkedIn, but what about a journalist? X seems a better place for them to be.

Also, you should consider that some social media are more popular in some countries than in others. And different social media appeal to different age groups.

Being on the right platform is an important factor for your social recruitment strategy to succeed, so we take a deeper dive into it in the next section. Keep reading to find the platforms that fit your social recruitment needs.

Social Media Platforms for Recruiting

Let’s explain which platforms of the 5 most popular social media you should use for which purposes in your social recruiting.

LinkedIn: The professional network

We wouldn’t be surprised if you chose LinkedIn as your social recruiting platform. After all, 3 people are getting hired on LinkedIn every minute. No doubt, it has impressive results.

As a social channel designed specifically for social recruiting and professional engagement, LinkedIn is the place where job seekers, employers, and industry leaders are brought together.

Its features, from showcasing company culture to connecting companies with potential candidates, are tailored to it. LinkedIn Advanced People Search tool is particularly valuable for pinpointing candidates with the precise skills and experience you’re looking for.

LinkedIn Advanced Filters

Plus, on LinkedIn, people are more open to connecting with professionals they don’t know in real life rather than on Facebook for example. So, you get to reach your ideal candidates in a personal way easier.

Facebook: Leveraging groups and targeted ads

Facebook is a powerful platform for social recruiting, offering a unique blend of casual engagement and targeted reach through its ads.

You can actively participate in relevant groups where jobs are being posted regularly and integrate yourself within these communities, lending you credibility and avoiding the pitfall of appearing overly promotional, like with Facebook ads.

Social Recruiting Facebook Groups

When it’s time to post a job opportunity, it can live under the dedicated jobs bookmark on your business page, as well as circulate in regular post streams.

Your employees can amplify visibility by sharing these posts, to further extend reach.

Additionally, for a more focused social recruiting approach, you can boost job posts to appear in the feeds of a specific audience. Taking advantage of the sophisticated Facebook audience demographics (like location, education, etc.), you ensure that your vacancy is seen by the most relevant users.

X (Twitter): Engaging with potential hires in real-time

X, with its fast-paced, real-time communication style, can be an effective platform for social recruiting.

Firstly, with hashtag tracking you can identify popular, industry-specific hashtags to search for to discover active professionals who are open to new positions as we speak. And reach out to them to take advantage of that momentum.

Also, the short nature of tweets with limited characters encourages clear and concise job announcements, making it easier for potential candidates to quickly grasp opportunities and engage directly with employers.

This is a social recruiting example on X.

Social Recruiting Tweet Example

Source: X

Instagram: Showcasing company culture

Instagram is the ideal platform for nurturing your employer brand by showcasing your company culture, due to its photo- and video-dominated nature.

It’s perfect for your social recruiting strategy as it lets you paint a vibrant picture of your workplace by sharing images that highlight your company’s values, reels with your team activities, and stories of the day-to-day life in your company.

That way you can create an emotional connection with your audience, humanizing your business.

Instagram’s younger user demographic also makes it particularly suitable for appealing to millennial and Gen-Z job seekers who place a strong emphasis on company culture when considering potential employers.

TikTok: Engaging the younger workforce

TikTok is an excellent social channel to highlight the fun side of working in your company, especially to engage with the younger workforce.

In the same spirit as on Instagram, you can post short videos with your team enjoying their time at the office, work-from-home content, funny interviews with your current employees, or present your new hires!

@microsoft POV: you’re the only one in the office who dressed up. 🎃#Microsoft #FYP #CorporateTok #PumpkinCostume #Halloween ♬ original sound – Microsoft

But TikTok went beyond that. We should definitely mention that in response to the growing interest in career-related content, TikTok introduced TikTok Resumes in 2021, allowing companies to post job openings and candidates to submit short video resumes. This innovative social recruiting approach aligned perfectly with the platform’s youthful and creative user base.

Now the results for hashtags such as #TikTokResumes and #CareerTok have evolved to a place where you can find entertaining work-related videos, tips, and more!

Conclusion

To wrap it up, social recruiting is here to stay in the hiring game.

Recruiters and hiring managers have to sharpen their social media skills to keep up. The strategies we analyzed above can guide your way to incorporating social recruiting into your HR processes.

To quickly and easily find potential candidates for your open positions on social media, try Mentionlytics social listening platform now. Free for 14 days, no card required!

Maira Volitaki

About Maira Volitaki

Just a content manager here who loves researching and writing about all things marketing. But when off-duty, you’ll find me lost in a mystery book or binge-watching TV shows... or petting the nearest dog! 🐶 Feel free to drop me a line on LinkedIn.