A Sound Investment?

One of the most frequent problems recruiters face when it comes to social media is quantifying the monetary value. With an already packed schedule and targets to meet, reluctance is understandable when it comes to taking on more work without seeing immediate payback.

Happy ClockSo, is social media really worth investing the time in?

The simple answer to this is yes.

Why? To begin with, even if the direct benefits from social media cannot be seen, the detriment of not having it can be. One of the first things that a potential client or candidate will do is perform a quick search on their prospective companies of choice. Those that appear engaged with their consumers will immediately be favoured over those who appear to take the lazy backseat.

Secondly, it’s important to remember that it isn’t the size of a company’s networks that matter but the quality. A group constructed of 100 inactive members is no more than a database of names. However, a group of 20 sector specific, engage members can provide a goldmine of industry information and start to work for you in influencing other members of the profession. The average recruiter already has people who they regularly contact for industry information, so to continue these relationships online is an easy start to creating extended communities without generating a lot more work. In short, if targeted correctly, social media won’t take much more time than should already be spent nurturing contacts.

Lastly, if the time for this truly can’t be squeezed in a day, hiring a social media representative is an easy work around. For larger companies especially, this can be a sensible way to maintain consistent branding and message continuity. At the cost of an intern wage there can be a goldmine of free media coverage just waiting at your finger tips.

Sarah Fuller

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Etienne
    Sep 15, 2010 @ 06:30:51

    Hi Sarah

    I agree in principle with your post, but lets make it a bit more challenging, okay?

    What if we’re talking about a small company (no internal resources, and not even enough budget to pay for and time to coach an intern), plus activity in a B2B niche.

    This means 99.9% of the people using social media have zero interest in the company. Now finally to my questions:
    1) will a potential future employee still think of this company as lazy?
    2) are there “light / no fat” ways for such a company to still have an interesting online presence?

    cheers
    Etienne

    Reply

  2. Sarah Fuller
    Sep 15, 2010 @ 17:39:50

    Hi Etienne,

    You make a good point.

    1) I agree that social media is applicable to certain sectors more than others, I definitely think that it’s important to identify and use the most appropriate channels for your target audience – a young, temporary workforce on Facebook, MDs through LinkedIn being the classic example. From a personal point of view, I would look for a prospective employer to be media savvy but granted to this would be of less interest to people in different industries.

    2) Although the number of social media channels available can be intimidating, there are now easy ways to link up different sites so that only one need be regularly maintained to automatically updates the others. For example, using the LinkedIn hash tag in Twitter, combined with an application such as Tweet Deck means that one status update can be sent to all three accounts at the same time, drastically reducing time spent. I guess this again goes back to making your social media use relevant – there’s no point having a company Facebook page if your target demographic aren’t online there.

    Ideally I think you’re right though and you do need someone in the organisation that is interested in social media – it’s then less of a chore or task & more an excuse to engage with people.

    Thanks for your comment Etienne – good points to think over there!
    Sarah

    Reply

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