We spend an inordinate amount of time designing AdWords placement models to filter out job related traffic but one person’s trash is another’s treasure. As the economy continues to improve the competition for talent is getting more and more competitive and AdWords can be a competitive advantage. Let’s explore how AdWords can serve your recruiting needs.
The help wanted industry is well established on the web and it was one of the early areas where the internet disrupted the world. Many will say that newspaper help-wanted ads were one of first victims of the Internet’s success. Job boards have a huge informational advantage over newspapers and destroyed what was one of the cash-cows of that industry. Today a printed help wanted ad is considered by many to be quaint, or worse. In every community there are job boards that serve the purpose of getting the message of your job openings out in the market. In the local area of San Luis Obispo the leading name in this is SLOJobs.com followed by Craigslist.
These job boards typically provide the posting of the job and managing the replies to the posting. Some of these are better than others but they get the job done. After all, the audience is highly responsive since they need a job and you have one. In most of these there are additional advertising opportunities with featured jobs, refreshed postings, and many others.
The best applicants are not actively seeking a job
The problems with job boards are that they only reach those that are actively seeking a job. Ask any recruiter and they will tell you that the best applicants are not actively seeking a job because they are employed. In technology it is commonly said that there are two types of programmers; good and unemployed.
Our tool of choice is Display not Search
The point of this is that the good talent you are looking for is not looking for a job but they might be open to one that peaks their interest. This is where the power of AdWords can help your recruiting activities and since they are not actively seeking a job our tool of choice is Display not Search. The display network is the placements next to content rather than driven by a keyword match. This results in a traffic flow that is passive and is attracted by the content.
Display Network targeting flavors: keywords, placements, or remarketing
Keywords in display create eligibility by the match to the content and this changes the nature of the keywords. As an example if we were targeting Programmers in search we would use words like programmer, developer, etc… but in display we want words that would attract our audience not define them. So words like “Code Examples” or “Algorithm” become our targets because our audience often reads articles containing that type of content. This also tends to qualify the audience as being in occupation mode – search tends to be occupationally related.
Placements in display are exact locations that the AdWords Expert has found that they believe attract the audience they want. A local example of this might be placement at the Tribune (Local Newspaper), which enjoys a fair amount of local traffic. These placements can be placed by site and further qualified with keywords to match to the articles they publish. The challenge with this targeting is the amount of work involved in finding all the resources that fit the job.
Remarketing is probably the best of the best when it comes to job traffic. The reason for this is in the way that audiences are created in the AdWords account. To build a remarketing audience you add a snippet of code to your website that adds the person/browser/device to the audience. In simple terms these are people who are already aware of your business and that is a good indicator that they have an interest in your business.
Technically there are additional targeting methods including topics, demographics, and interests. Our experience with these is that the data is rather sloppy and the results you get vary, so we tend to stay away from these targeting methods.
AdWords reaches the other 99%
Posting your job and running supplement advertising on the job board site will get more people to your job posting. The challenge is that their traffic volume is probably less than 1% of the overall market of properly skilled individuals. AdWords reaches the other 99% because the ad placement is in the Display Network that consists of more than one million websites. It would be an unusual person on the internet that never loaded a site running Google AdSense.
Google AdSense is the name of the system used by the publishers to engage with the AdWords Placements. When the content publisher designs their site they reserve advertising spots that allows Google to place ads in those spots. The publisher is then paid for traffic they create to those ads.
Images are more powerful than Text
When doing these placements we normally only use image ads for this because they are more powerful than text ads. Because the design does not have to be highly creative we find that the newest generation of image ad creator inside AdWords is excellent for quick and inexpensive generation of a set of image ads. There are also a number of campaign parameters to concern yourself with in a job posting campaign but that is for another article.
One more thing
When you use the Image Ad Creator inside of AdWords and they are not approved within one business day we find that a follow up call to Google AdWords Support (866-246-6453) speeds this process up. We think what happens is that once the ad is more than one day old and you place a support call it seems to put a higher priority on the review. Our standard practice is to check the approval process on the next business day and if not approved, make the call. The system at Google is smart enough to see the pending review and it automates putting a priority on your ad approval.