Using Events for Recruitment Marketing
Events are a powerful tool for recruiters to grow your talent pools and market your solutions.
On Episode 11 of the Skill Point Podcast we spoke to Elle Nash, the Senior Marketing Executive at Camino Partners Ltd, about how to create effective events that provide value for you and your audience.
What’s Your Purpose?
Before you decide to host an event, it’s important that you define what its purpose is.
Elle said that in her experience, “We knew that there wasn’t a space specifically for finance professionals in tech. There weren’t groups or webinars or anything like that at the time either, so we could see a gap in the market for it… [and] events would be a great way to engage that network.”
To define your purpose, sit down with key stakeholders in the business to determine your specific target audience and discuss how you can meet their needs. Find a niche that you can provide value to, then build an event that caters to them. You can find speakers who have worked in that niche or talk about your own internal expertise from working in the industry, but whatever you do needs to actively benefit your audience.
Events are a big undertaking, and take a lot of preparation to pull off. It’s worth spending time considering how well known you are in the industry and assessing the kind of audience you’ll attract using your current channels. Is your brand already popular with your niche? Are your consultants already embedded in these communities? Hosting a smaller webinar first could be a good way to gauge interest and test your outreach methods.
Research your audience’s pain points and offer solutions in your event’s promotional material. This will gain traction with your audience, creating higher engagement and reach. It’s also important to build your brand awareness before you launch an event, because people need to trust you before they’ll be willing to go out of their way to see you.
It’s also important to consider your venue. Would you attract a larger audience if your event was virtual? Would it create a more valuable networking experience if you hosted an in-person event? Consider the audience that you have and build your event accordingly.
Live events have the potential for higher quality content creation. Getting a videographer to record key speakers and get b-roll footage of your event is a great way to generate testimonials, social content and future promotional material. It also creates a buzz during the event as people often want to take part in creating content and sharing their experiences online.
If you already have an ample audience, platforms like meetup pages can effectively build out your guestlist. However, if you’re aiming for an exclusive, invite-only event, you’ll need to think outside the box with your attraction methods. Are you only inviting candidates or also allowing hiring managers to come and take advantage of your events? Curating your guestlist and having a screening process could be important depending on the type of event that you’re hosting.
The main things to consider, according to Elle, are “How are you going to get people to the event? Who’s going to be responsible for promoting it? How many people do you want to attend?” You’ll never get 100% of your guestlist to attend, so aim to oversubscribe your capacity. No matter what promotional methods you’re using, having a clear strategy in place will ensure the smooth running of your event.
Once you’ve decided who to target, gaining traction is essential. Advertise the value that you’re going to give people at the event and make sure you stay top of mind for when it rolls around. You can use emails or social media to promote your event to your existing audience, or host virtual webinars or roundtables as teasers for the big day. You can also use your consultants’ networks to personally invite key people to your event. Streamlining each of your touchpoints will keep your audience engaged at each stage.
Maintain touch points with people who have signed up, both before and after the event. You can use your sign-up lists to gauge the ratio of people who attended, then assess which touchpoints they engaged with to create a better strategy for your next event. It’s also a good idea to share content afterwards so that people who expressed an interest but couldn’t attend still get something out of interacting with you. Keeping those touch points active also allows you to gather feedback, which results in positive testimonials or useful pointers for improvement.
Elle’s Top Tips:
- Use email reminders to keep your event top-of-mind
- Share teasers for the event, such as speaker spotlights and key take-aways
- Create a diary invite that people can integrate with their planners
- Get engagement by asking for questions they’d like to ask speakers
Having a post-event strategy will help you establish how to get the most out of your event. Consider what outcomes you want to achieve, such as growing your talent pool, creating meaningful relationships with clients or generating leads. Tailor your calls to action at the event to promote those outcomes, and make sure they line up with the value you’re offering there.
The content you’ll produce from your event is another consideration for your post-event strategy. Live-streaming your events can create a valuable resource for a widespread audience, but it can take away from the live experience. If you’ve set up hefty camera crews that block your audience’s view, you’re effectively damaging their experience, so consider the space and sightlines you’re working with before committing to a live stream. Having a single videographer that can create content from your speakers, networking time and venue set-up, providing valuable resources.
Maintaining your touch points after the event can make a difference to the audience’s experience. If you follow up to thank them for attending they’ll feel like valued customers or connections. Sharing content with them will also create alignment, particularly if you were able to get great pictures of the event. Having a personalised message from the consultants that they spoke to will also improve the retention you get from the event.
Want to know more about that videographer we mentioned? Reach out to discuss a quote for your next recruitment event.