A strong employer branding strategy shows potential applicants that they should be interested in your company because it offers a certain culture or opportunities for growth. So, if you are someone who wants to learn more about employer branding, here’s a primer to get you started.
Everyone is Talking About Employer Branding
Traditionally, organizations spent most of their efforts in building their consumer brand. Employer Branding was mostly an afterthought. The idea was that if you build a shiny consumer brand people will automatically come and join you.
It worked in the past because companies used to dominate the employment conversation.
However, in the last few years, the world of work has gone through some radical changes. Today, it is the talent who dominates the conversation. We are dealing with a generation of professionals who values purpose over perks. They are frugal, not tied to any long-term debts, comes from affluent families, and want to do work that matters.
Therefore, organizations are relooking at their talent strategy and employer branding has become a mainstream discipline.
So, if you are someone who wants to learn more about employer branding, here’s a primer to get you started.
What is Employer Branding
Employer branding or Talent Branding is the process of enhancing your organization’s reputation, both with your potential hires and current employees. It’s about giving your brand an emotional charge so that people feel a more trustworthy connection with your organization.
Employer brand identity is the medium that shows the human side of an organization. It enables your recruiters to go beyond corporate speak and have an authentic conversation with your potential hires.
This is a fact that people trust people more than they trust companies. Therefore, building a relatable employer brand will allow you to attract people who genuinely believe in your mission and looking to build a career with you.
Why is Talent Branding Important
Imagine you are trying to sell a product. You’ll never just go and ask your consumers to buy your product. You will systematically put efforts to highlight its features, benefits, create awareness, get other users to talk about it before asking for a purchase.
But in the world of talent, we pretty much do that. We throw a job description at the prospects and ask them to join us. This is an approach that might have worked in the past but not anymore.
Today, you need to actively build an employer brand and create brand advocates, just like you do for your consumer products or services.
Employer branding can be the deciding factor in whether your prospects are joining you or your competition.
Employer branding is not just some trend or fad, but rather a tool that can help you attract and retain the best talent.
How to Build a Powerful Employer Brand
Creating a strong employer brand is one of the keys to maximizing employee satisfaction across your organization. It all starts with defining your Employee Value Proposition (EVP). Your EVP is not a list of perks you provide. For example, providing food coupons is not an EVP, that’s an industry standard.
However, if your organization provides chef-prepared, nutritionist-certified free meals, that might be considered as a unique value proposition. Because it shows that you go beyond the industry standard to take care of your employees.
Once you decide on the EVP, the next step is to communicate the message in a manner that your target audience will understand. Identify the channels that your target audience uses the most and package your message using a variety of formats.
Here are a few things that you should keep in mind to build a powerful employer brand:
- Ditch the cliché: Don’t just use buzzwords like ‘innovation’ for the sake of it. Instead, focus on what sets you apart. Don’t use stock images that everyone else uses. Instead, create your unique visual style and identity.
- Learn the lingo: Don’t send press releases to an audience who communicates in memes. Segment your audience, create personas, and design messages that are customized to the segment.
- Create employer brand-specific social media handles: It is a good idea to create separate social media handles to distribute your employer branding messages. Separate channels will give you greater flexibility to experiment and help your audience to keep a track of your activities effortlessly.
- Highlight your people: We are living in a world of reviews. Therefore, let your people talk about your brand. Promote your leaders as humans and not just bosses. Create avenues where they can have an authentic conversation with future hires.
- Recruit, not hire: Though used interchangeably the words recruit and hire are vastly different. You hire a plumber to fix a leaking tap, the military recruit candidates who will jump into a dangerous mission without any hesitation.
- Be consistent: Ensure that your work culture aligns with your employer brand. A misaligned employer brand will lead to a culture shock and ultimately exit.
5 Ways to Make Your Employer Brand Stand Out
Employer brand messaging is an effective means of communicating the authentic story of your organization. Employer branding builds trust and credibility with your employees. Trust translates into an increase in loyalty and commitment.
As a result, candidates are more likely to choose an organization that understands their specific needs and provides solutions specific to their career goals.
Embrace these five principles to make your employer brand unique and stand out from competitors:
- Be visible – use unique and engaging content to attract audiences and make them feel a sense of connection with your company.
- Be relevant – make sure your message is relevant to what your audience needs and is going through.
- Be human – try to avoid using jargon or incomprehensible abbreviations that may confuse your audience and make them lose interest.
- Be authentic – don’t just jump into a trend. Examine closely and determine if you are being authentic to the message.
- Be creative – be bold. Don’t just stick to the same old concepts. Experiment with different forms and formats to stand out.
A strong employer branding strategy shows potential applicants that they should be interested in your company because it offers a certain culture or opportunities for growth.
In the last few years, the world of work has gone through a drastic change. It’s no longer adequate for companies to create a shiny consumer brand and hope that the consumer brand will attract talent too.
Instead, organizations should build an employer brand that shows the human side of the organization and helps the future talent to connect with the organization’s mission.
Main image: Photo by DISRUPTIVO on Unsplash
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