by Paul MacKenzie-Cummins (This article was written by Paul for the January edition of Recruitment International – see here).
In 2017, social media is going to become more challenging for recruiters. But the challenge will come from other recruiters for 2017 will be the year that social media will no longer be considered a nice-to-have, it will be essential to their marketing strategy.
Recruiters know that to stay ahead of the curve they need to exploit the business benefits to be gained from having a strong social media presence. But social media moves pretty fast. Just when you think you’ve gotten your head around one platform, a new feature is added that throws you out of kilter.
However, by looking at the key developments that have taken place over the last few months we can get a good insight into what to expect in the year ahead. With that in mind, here are the social media trends that are most likely to impact recruiters in the year ahead.
- Twitter will become more ‘relevant’ for recruiters:
The media has been awash with stories predicting the demise of Twitter, but there is plenty of life in the old blue bird yet. Twitter’s big problem is that is always compared to Facebook, yet the two serve very different purposes.
In 2017 we will see Twitter move away from being seen as a mass-market social platform and repositioned as one whose appeal will be its influential user base. Recruiters will use it as a means to better engage with candidates and potential clients while raising their own profiles as thought leaders and go-to providers.
- Facebook’s Workplace will bring agency teams closer together:
One of the greatest challenges agency owners face is retaining their best consultants, and a key reason why they leave in the first place is a lack of engagement with the business. That’s where ‘Facebook for business’ may help.
A simple yet highly effective tool to connect with colleagues, Workplace shares many of the Facebook characteristics most of us are already familiar with – newsfeed, chat feature and groups. And because it is easier to use than many existing internal communication options, we can expect to see its take-up increase over the next 12 months.
- Agencies will get more visual:
The use of branded images to accompany social media posts will increase significantly in 2017 as recruiters look to get their agency brand seen and heard above the noise.
According to HubSpot, social media posts with a relevant image gain 94% more views than those without, and they get 35% more retweets (Social Media Examiner). So while the frequency of posting content may not change too much this year, the use of visual content accompanying these posts will.
- Video will reign supreme:
In 2016 live video streaming really took off. As well Periscope, Livestream and YouNow, Facebook got in on the action with the mass roll out of its Live streaming platform, with YouTube set to follow suit in 2017.
‘Disappearing content’ à la Snapchat (now rebranded Snap), Instagram, Whatsapp and Facebook are set to become even more popular in the year ahead as users increasingly swoon towards an altogether in-the-moment form of communication with organisations.
With video content’s ability to better engage audiences and give agencies a ‘personality’, coupled with its low cost and easy-to-use app technology, we should see more brand-conscious recruiters experimenting with this format in 2017.
- Content marketing will overtake all other marketing promotional activities:
We’ve been banging the drum on this for years but 2017 is likely to see an explosion in the use of content marketing in recruitment. Recruiters will simply have no other choice other than to get on board with it.
Consumers – candidates and clients – want their recruitment partners to address their pain points and engage with them like never before, and that’s what content marketing will do.
From regularly updated blogs and white papers to infographics and LinkedIn Publisher, content marketing’s place in the promotional mix will become elevated the further into 2017 we move.