Marketing agencies are the melting pot of talent – designers, copywriters, media buyers, account managers, and people from all kinds of backgrounds do their best to meet tight deadlines and balance client expectations.While the intensive and eventful #agency environment might be attractive to some, it’s getting harder to attract high-level #talent to agencies. Click To Tweet
The job market is incredibly competitive, so if an employee can get better conditions for less trouble and pressure, they won’t hesitate to take it.
So what can you do as a marketing agency to attract the best talent and keep them by your side? Here are a few ideas.
Work on your culture
At the core of your hiring strategy should lie a strong company culture. In time, good company culture can help you create your agency’s brand – a well-known, desirable employer in the industry.
What are some indicators of good company culture?
- Job autonomy. Personal responsibility and ownership of projects should be one of your top values to create a good company culture. All your employees should feel like they’re pulling in the same direction as the company and their opinions are valued.
- Friendships. A great work environment helps create friendships instead of building a strict hierarchy. If your employees like to spend time with each other even out of the office, you know you’re doing something right.
- Flexibility. Strict policies rarely create a positive work atmosphere. Instead of judging your employees by the number of hours they put in every week, focus on the quality of their work and their progress through education.
A good culture can also help you reduce turnover, develop leaders, and even hire top-level talent. When you develop a pleasant working environment, chances are your employees will be eager to bring their friends in.
An easy way to attract quality talent is to ask for referrals. You can even go one step further and make referrals a key step in your hiring strategy.
Referrals are especially effective for highly technical positions with a high entry level like developers. Getting a good developer with a strong work ethic and technical skills can be hard, but it’s made much easier through referrals.
One way to incorporate referrals into your hiring strategy is to offer substantial rewards to those employees whose referrals get the position. The reward can be cash, but you can always try and get creative with it: tickets for events, a weekend getaway, movie tickets, etc.
To make sure your employees understand the importance of the referral process, try to incorporate it into company-wide meetings. You can even dedicate entire meetings to discuss referrals to see who has referred the most candidates, which will create a leaderboard to spark a healthy competition.
Create an employee referral program and use email marketing to run it efficiently.
Send regular emails to your employees with new job offers, perks, and benefits for referring new talent and best advocates who brought the best new employees.
With more than 720 million active users, LinkedIn is the largest professional network globally.
Not only does it give you access to a mountain of talent, but it also allows you to narrow your search and find the perfect candidate.
Here is how you can use LinkedIn to get the best talent:
- Use advanced search. LinkedIn allows you to specify your search with different filters to narrow down your results. You can search for people based on their industry, former employer, education, seniority level, and various other factors.
- Search in groups. Copywriters, designers, developers – all of them have their communities where they like to share knowledge and industry tips. You can join these groups and post job ads; just make sure it’s within the group’s rules.
- Advanced targeting. You can find the perfect candidate by targeting their activity. For example, you can reach people who have interacted with a specific post on LinkedIn. All you need is a tool that can help you scrap those contacts and use LinkedIn automated messages to get in touch with the candidates you find interesting.
Have a social media presence
LinkedIn and other social networks also allow you to target potential employees based on specific criteria. When setting up a campaign on Facebook, Instagram, or LinkedIn, you can create your perfect candidate profile and target only candidates that suit your selected criteria.
More importantly, a strong social media presence will allow you to promote your company culture and build an image. If you manage to create a reputation, you may even get candidates coming to you through social media channels.
You can also use a relatively new Facebook feature called Facebook jobs and post your job ads directly on your page. The platform provides your candidates with a way to apply for positions directly and gives you control over the hiring process.
Hire graduates and juniors
The best talent is developed in-house: the people you bring in, educate, and let them grow with your organization are gems in today’s workspace. Not only will these people develop loyalty and familiarity with your company, but you will also get senior employees that know your process, clients, and culture.
Implementing an internship program is a great way to create a funnel that will help you bring in and develop young talent. A good internship program should give your young talents education, challenges, most importantly, a real chance to get a job.
This approach might be more time-consuming but its returns can be amazing. Research shows that external hires are usually paid more and get consistently lower grades on performance ratings. However, hiring college students part-time or those who have very recently graduated and grooming them to be exceptional employees can be a great move when done correctly.
Getting to the best talent often isn’t a goal you’re working towards: it can be a byproduct of overall great company culture. The hiring process doesn’t start when you create a job ad; it starts when you create a work environment that appreciates employees and focuses on job autonomy.
After that, you can get to headhunting for specific positions using the strategies we described.
Try out our recommendations, and let us know how they worked for you!
About the author
Stefan Smulders is a SaaS Entrepreneur | Founder of the World’s safest software for LinkedIn Automation – Expandi.io | for more than 5 years Founder of LeadExpress.nl.