4 Recruitment Ads That Speak Directly to Millennials

February 1, 2016

When it comes to hiring them, millennials aren’t as evasive or mysterious as you might think. It all comes down to understanding what they want, and then showing them you have it with a killer recruitment ad that they can’t ignore.

And, some companies are doing just that. With the understanding that a sense of purpose, collaboration, creativity and fun are all especially important job qualities for millennials, these four companies created innovative recruiting ads that touched on one or more of those values.

1. Wieden + Kennedy brings some fun into its application process 

  • millennial recruiting

Image source: Adweek

When agency Wieden + Kennedy was looking for a social strategist for its Old Spice account, not only did they create a visual that stood out – they created an application process unlike any other.

The agency continued its oddball Old Spice branding throughout the job ad, requesting that all applicants take part in what amounted to a social media challenge. The 10-step challenge had applicants competing for best orginal Pinterest board dedicated to in-line speed skating, getting the most people to friend their mother or father on Facebook, getting recommendations on LinkedIn from at least three other people trying to get this job, and more funny challenges.

The ad worked by turning the recruitment process into a game that people wanted to take part in and showing millennials that Wieden + Kennedy doesn’t take itself too seriously – they know how to have fun and a millennial would enjoy working there. 

2. Serviceplan encourages creative students to apply

  • millennial recruiting

Image source: JobMob

German advertising agency Serviceplan wanted to hire creative people who can build something out of nothing and find new ideas everywhere. To do that, they created recruitment posters that didn’t reveal their message until someone started doodling on them. They hung these posters around design universities.

This self-selecting job posting encourages creative millennials to apply, knowing that their ideas are not just welcomed, they’re flat-out expected at Serviceplan.

Plus, the message underneath also plays into the idea that millennials crave work with meaning and purpose, even if it means working harder with a tongue-in-cheek phrase.

3. Med K&K uses reverse psychology to show of its collaborative, family culture

  • millennial recruiting

Image source: Firefish blog

Med K&K’s doodle-looking recruitment ad pokes fun at itself while conveying a perfect message of the company’s collaborative, friendly office environment—something millennials crave.

By drawing themselves as all kinds of monsters, what they’re really saying is the opposite: they’re fun, good-spirited, and work as a team. The vast majority of millennials in the workforce are looking for this team spirit at work and are staying away from competitive “monsters." With reverse psychology, this ad is speaking directly to those millennials.

4. McKinsey promotes valuing meaningful work

  • millennial recruiting


Text on penciil: "We're looking for students who aren't satisfied with just any solution. www.mckinsey.ch" Image source: We Love Ad

Not only is McKinsey directly calling out for students in this recruitment ad, it’s showing the younger generation that the company values its ideas and its hard work.

The consultancy understands that millennials do not want to be cogs in a wheel; they want to work at a company where they can make a difference and have meaningful work. The ad doesn’t shy away from the idea that in this job, you will be working hard. But McKinsey knows that millennials don’t shy away from that, either.

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