More Edge, Less Vanilla: 5 Hilarious Employer Branding Videos

March 7, 2014

We know recruiters are a humorous bunch, but when it comes to talent brand, they can do a pretty good job of hiding it.

Most companies think that using humor in their employer branding efforts is risky and hard to pull off. Vanilla recruiting strategies are the norm: at least they usually don’t cause controversy or get people angry. Humor on the other hand…

However, we combed through the internet and found that recruiting rebels and risk-takers do exist. Check out the five and half excellent examples we selected below. They make a great case for how showing off your brand in a light-hearted way can help you attract the right talent and set you apart from companies with a bigger budget.

1. Twitter: “At Twitter, the Future is You!”

Twitter nailed it with this parody of all recruiting videos and even got CEO Dick Costolo to star. The video has everything…to the extreme – staged fun, scripted interviews, cheesy lines, and amateur effects. The result is over 1,000,000 views on YouTube and a clear impression that the company is clever and edgy, and that nobody working there, even the CEO, is too senior or too serious to have some fun.

2. Hubspot: “Inbound Style”

One thing that comes to mind after watching this Hubspot video is – “Those guys know how to have fun.” Granted the video gets borderline HR-inappropriate at a few instances (eg. at 1:21…or is my inappropriateness bar too low?), but this is such a great way to riff off a mega pop hit, get a ton of views and show off that your company is 100% certified fun place to work. Also, is every Hubspot employee a great dancer?

3. Rapid7 at the Movies – “Passion”

I admit, we use Rapid7 as a best practice example quite often, but it’s just too hard to resist the low-budget, grainy, yet hilarious videos they make. In fact, they have an entire YouTube channel of them: "Rapid7 at the Movies."

According to their Senior Director of Global Talent Acquisition, Ed Nathanson, these videos are a great way to filter out any candidates who can’t handle the lively and goofy company culture.

4. Betts Recruiting: “Sh*t Recruiters Say”

Betts is a recruitment agency that decided to make a bold move and take a light-hearted look at what its employees do day-to-day. It’s always refreshing to see people who can make fun of themselves and do it with panache.

According to Founder and CEO Carolyn Betts, the video received a lot of laughs and positive feedback, helping Betts increase its exposure and brand itself as fun, young, and innovative.

5. Zappos Family Music Video

The video begs a few questions:

  • Does every new hire at Zappos get a Shake Weight?
  • Is it a prerequisite to be ridiculously good singer to work at Zappos? (if so, here at LinkedIn we may fail if you are to judge us based on our Christmas carol attempt).
  • Does Tony Hsieh breakdance?
  • And bonus: will Stacy Zapar, the most connected woman on LinkedIn and the newest Zappos employee, be starring in the next installment?

If anybody has answers please let us know at @hireonlinkedin. In the meantime, it suffices to say that this video is such an amazing peek into the Zappos company culture. And more importantly, I don’t think I have even seen a video with more radiant and happy employees – they definitely made me smile and there even wasn’t an amazing box of shoes involved.


6) Weebly Careers Page

This last one’s a bit of a change of pace, but it’s good to keep in mind that making funny videos isn’t the only way for your company to add in some humorous elements.  This image is featured on Weebly’s career site. I don’t know about you, but I think I’d rather be the guy on the right.

To receive blog posts like this one straight in your inbox, subscribe to the blog newsletter.