In April I spoke at OnlyMarketingJobs.com Marketing within Recruitment Sector conference. It was an absolutely fantastic event, with an excellent array of speakers covering key marketing issues. The recruitment agency sector is not generally known for is innovation – but this conference proved otherwise. Marketers are clearly keen to lead the way, not just in marketing, but in sales and digital transformation of their businesses. Check out the presentations here.
We came away from the conference wanting to do a little bit more to find out about what activities UK marketers were focusing on this year. Below was the result. We asked marketers and decision makers, ‘what marketing activities will you be prioritising for 2016’ and asked them to rank 14 activities. An industry respected SurveyMonkey algorithm was used to score each activity and rank them.
Please find the results in our graphic below, with my analysis underneath. To get a full resolution PDF of the image simply click on it. If you want access to the full results feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What is interesting for recruitment marketers is that candidate experience, perhaps not always seen as an area that concerns marketers, was their highest priority for 2016. 52% placed candidate experience in top 3, with 22% putting it right at the top. This reflects a clear increase in awareness of the importance of candidate communication in a candidate driven market.
Unsurprisingly priorities continue to shift to be in line with marketing trends in other industries – with a clear focus on content marketing, social media and email marketing. The desire for a new or optimised website amongst recruitment businesses seems to reflect this continued move towards digital content marketing techniques.
Despite the hype across the recruitment blogosphere and at conferences, mobile and video marketing scored low. Considering the potential for recruitment agencies to add huge value through these mediums, and how easily such mediums can be used, I believe marketers will come round to championing them in their businesses - but I suspect it’s a matter of getting the basics right first?
Another item that appeared fairly low on the priority list was sales and marketing process automation. For me, effective marketing and sales is driven by effective business processes and systems – with shared workflows, data and campaigns. With technology where it is in the agency sector and the isolation of marketing from sales, one can sympathise with the lack of focus on such automation at this time.
Interestingly surveys of the wider marketing industry, such as this one, show that marketers consider the commercial impact of automation, content marketing and mobile as considerable.
Finally, PPC Search advertising came last - 49% put it in the bottom 3. Over the years Google advertising has not been as trendy as other, cheaper, organic marketing techniques, however marketers would be wrong to dismiss it. When combined with existing campaigns PPC remarketing has started to become extremely powerful. Check out Sam Noble’s presentation, ‘The Power of Audience for Recruiters’ from April’s Marketing within the Recruitment Sector conference.
We'll ask this question again next year. It will be fascinating to see if the trends everyone has been predicting continue to emerge.