What Does Great Talent Brand Content Look Like?

March 26, 2014

Want to learn more about creating great content that will make your talent brand stand out? Join Stacy's webinar on March 27th at at 10am PT /1pm ET.

One of the questions most frequently asked of me is, "What's Talent Brand and how is it different from Employer Brand?" Long story short, Talent Brand is the highly social version of your employer brand. It's what people think, say and share about your company as a place to work. As written in this blog post, your brand is no longer a one-way message. It's not even a two-way conversation. In this social world, it's a myriad of conversations between recruiters, employees, customers, prospects and a host of other people who are all out there sharing and listening to info about your company. Your company isn't the one controlling the message anymore; you're just one voice in the crowd. It's a whole new game!

If you haven't already done so, it's time to take a peek at your company's employee value proposition, culture, people and typical candidate experience and use those components to define your company's talent brand. What's the word on the street? What should it be? Once you've defined your talent brand, you need to make sure your recruiters understand it, your employees understand it and ultimately, your prospective candidates understand it.

How Do We Do That? What Does Great Talent Brand Content Look Like?

Once you're defined your company's talent brand, you're ready to start sharing it with the world, right? Almost. Before you can share, you need to understand what great talent brand content looks like.

It's pretty simple, really. Great content tells a story - a relevant, transparent story about what it's like to work at your company. It's about giving prospects a chance to peek between the blinds to get the inside view of life at your company. Painting an accurate picture. It's means being authentic, being real, being approachable. Not trying to be something you're not. And, last but not least, being varied, interesting and engaging enough to maintain a captive audience that wants to interact with you and share that content with others.

Let's Break It Down a Little…

1. Great content is relevant:

Who are you trying to reach? Are you targeting tech candidates? Seasonal talent? What are your branding goals exactly? Make sure your content is relevant and speaks to the right audience. Choose content that is meaningful and targeted depending on who you're trying to engage. Share industry articles, news, current events. Introduce candidates to the teams they'll be working with. Know your audience and make it about them. Think to yourself – If I was a ____, would I find this post relevant and interesting? Would I want to click on it, read it, comment on it, share it with others?

2. Great content is transparent:

There's no more hiding behind the curtain. It's time to open the blinds and let the sunshine in so candidates can see things as they are. Your recruiters need to be accessible to candidates. Don't be afraid to get out there and talk to people (online or offline!). Have an active voice in the conversation. Help shape public opinion in a positive way, by letting folks see things for themselves. Share original content written by recruiters, hiring managers, employees. Post pictures of the people or the work environment, share employee spotlight videos. A picture (or video!) paints a thousand words.

3. Great content is authentic: 

Many companies share content that they think their audience wants to hear. It's buttoned up, it's polished, it sounds good. But that's the wrong way of going about it. Trying to be something you're not is only going to come across as phony in the long run, or worse, attract people who are not a true culture match with your company. This isn't the time to play dress-up. It's time to take off the veil and be true to who you are. Answer questions truthfully. Highlight your strengths but acknowledge the things you're still working on. If your culture is a little quirky (like my team at Zappos!) then own up to it and let that come through in your posts. Candidates will respect you for it and you'll attract the exact people who will thrive in your culture.

4. Great content is engaging:

Do you share job postings all day? Do you never interact with your followers online? Does your content fire people up or put them to sleep? A common mistake teams make is sharing content that's just not very engaging. It's just not interesting, it doesn’t provide any clarity about your culture, and it doesn’t help paint a picture for your target audience. It might be something that YOU care about, but is it something that OTHERS will care about? I heard Sarah Evans speak at SocialFresh last year and her words have resonated with me ever since… "Great content makes people want to share, care or swear." Yes! If there's nothing there to make them want to click, respond, engage, share, interact, then it's probably not truly GREAT content.

LinkedIn is hosting a free webinar tomorrow – Thursday 3/27 at 10am PT / 1pm ET – where I will co-present with LinkedIn's Global Talent Brand Strategy Leader Dina Medeiros. It's called Developing a Winning Talent Brand Strategy and we'll be sharing all sorts of goodies about talent brand: what it is, what it isn't, what great content looks like (with lots of fun examples to inspire you!), how to amplify it and get it out to your target audience and even how to measure it. If you're looking for ways to supercharge your talent brand strategy, I hope you'll join us!


Stacy Donovan Zapar is a 16-year recruiting veteran for Fortune 500 tech companies and CEO & Founder of Tenfold Social Training, a recruiter training company for talent acquisition and staffing teams around the world. She currently works for Zappos as their Candidate Experience & Engagement Strategist, working on fun projects around social recruiting, talent communities, talent brand, candidate experience and more. Stacy is a publisher on LinkedIn and served as Technical Editor for Wiley's LinkedIn Marketing: An Hour a Day. Stacy speaks regularly at HR / Recruiting conferences globally, including #truLondon, LinkedIn Talent Connect and Sourcing Summit Australia. She is #6 on Huffington Post's Top 100 Most Social HR Experts on Twitter and #7 on ERE.net's 50 People Most Retweeted by Recruiters on Twitter. Feel free to follow Stacy on LinkedIn and Twitter @StacyZapar.