by Jessica Lunk
Career fairs, professional development days, trade shows, and conferences are excellent venues for connecting with IT candidates. Meeting with technical talent in person solidifies the connection they have with your employer brand. But you can only physically meet with a limited number of candidates. Amplifying your presence at live events through social media can increase candidate leads and employer brand awareness exponentially.
The success of social media event strategies relies on building virtual awareness before the event.
Good candidates do their research before attending an event. They have an idea which employers, panels, and breakout sessions they are going to visit before they even arrive. Use the valuable weeks and days before your event to promote your brand and pique their interest. Employers who wait until the day of the event to launch their social media campaign have already missed an opportunity to make an impression on IT talent.
Determine talent acquisition goals. To get the most out of physical and social media presence, identify the main objective of the event. A campus career fair might be conducive to generating leads for an internship or management program, while a professional networking event may be better suited to boosting brand awareness among tech veterans. The overall goal sets the stage for the rest of the social media strategy, whether it’s driving resume traffic, or creating a memorable experience for technical talent.
Research relevant hashtags. Note the event hashtags, including the official event-sponsored hashtag, relevant community hashtags, and any unofficial, unsponsored hashtags that are creating a buzz. Use these to generate conversation before the event, boosting employer brand recognition among attendees and their peer groups.
Identify social media influencers. Influencers are analysts and experts with a large following who can boost the credibility of your employer brand through social media interactions. Connect with social media influencers before the event. Loop influencers into pre-event conversations to set the stage for social media collaboration during the event, driving traffic, awareness, recognition and authority among attendees.
Create social media assets. Compile social media assets before hand. Assets might include a company culture video, landing page for job descriptions, employee testimonials, and any other collateral that supports your overall talent acquisition goals. Make like a boyscout and be prepared so you can focus on implementing your social media strategy during the event – not scrambling to get last minute details in place.
Live events provide an opportunity for employers to create an experience for hard-to-recruit candidates to remember them by. Pre-event social media activities amplifies the employer brand signal leading up to the event, ensuring that social media efforts pay off.