Over the past few years, we have been building our social media presence. For our particular business, we have found the most success in LinkedIn, which is no surprise considering it is so widely used by recruiters. We'd like to take a moment to share some of what we have learned so that you can enjoy similar success in this professional network.
As with any marketing effort, you first have to figure out who your audience is and make sure you are reaching them. The best way to do that is to first ENGAGE with them in LinkedIn Groups. Figure out which Groups people in your niche are in and join them. And be sure to participate in conversations. Participate does not mean "sell." You want share your ideas and expertise without being self-promotional.
Now you know how to respond to other people's posts, but what should YOU post? The simple answer is USEFUL information. Groups are particularly skeptical of members who are just trying to sell their services, so keep your Group posts ultra-useful. The Group manager could move all of your posts to promotions, or worse, not post them at all if they feel you are only trying to sell your services. If someone reports you, they could force all of your posts into moderation where they must be reviewed by the Group's manager before they can be posted.
You can post relevant articles you find on the Internet or from your own blog. We use a couple of online tools to help us find articles to post and to provide references for our own blog articles. A RSS feed reader, such as Feedly, allows you to follow certain sites and provides lists of the most recent articles. This allows you to easily glance through the list to find helpful articles. Evernote, which allows you to save articles that you may want to repost later or use as blog fodder, is also useful. These tools also have mobile apps to help you with your content marketing on the go.
If you don't have a recruiter blog, you may want to start one. Besides providing yourself with a repository of LinkedIn posts, it can also draw people to your website and establish you as an expert in your niche.
Once you have connected with people in Groups, you can invite them to become a Connection. Then they will see your posts on your own profile where, unlike Groups, you can be a little more self-promotional. You can also post items such as press releases, blog posts about your company, and offers on your Company Page. But even then, don't abuse the privilege.
Then there are posting times to consider. Inbound Marketing Agents states that the best times to post are 7 to 9 a.m. and 5 to 6 p.m., while the worst times are between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. But it all depends on your niche. We have actually found that a large portion of our audience is reading our posts after work hours, so we often post after 5 p.m. Make sure you are posting when your unique audience will see your posts.
Your ultimate goal should not be to overtly sell your services. You want to become an expert in your field so that when a candidate or company is looking for a recruiter, they think of YOU first. Thoughtful comments in Group discussions, posting relevant industry news, and writing your own blog articles are great ways to achieve this goal.
About the Author: Debbie Fledderjohann is President of Top Echelon Contracting, Inc., the Recruiter's Back-Office Solution. Established in 1992, TEC helps recruiters offer contract staffing by becoming the W-2 employer of their contractors. As such, they handle the financial, administrative, and legal details, including payroll processing and funding, employment paperwork, tax withholdings, Workers' Compensation, Unemployment, legal contracts, background checks, invoicing and collections, and more. They do business in 49 states and specialize in professional, technical, and healthcare placements. You can follow Debbie on @dfledderjohann as well as on LinkedIn, Google+, and Twitter.
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