In order to keep debate as diverse as possible, we''ll be featuring posts by guest authors from time to time. First up is Russell Byrne of London Jobs
Spreading the Net
All this talk of Long Tails, YouTubes and Web 2.0’s has got me thinking. The internet is undoubtedly an exciting arena in which to work. Ok, it’s not Disney World exciting, but you know what I mean. By its very definition ‘New Media’ is going to be a place of innovation and expectation, and online recruitment is no exception. We frequently speak to agencies about the developments that we are working on, trying to find something to offer advertisers that is exciting, exclusive, and perhaps most importantly, effective. And rightly so. If we as an industry don’t push our collective boundaries what claim can we have to being a ‘new’ media; to being any different to the rest of the recruitment advertising fraternity?
Yet beyond Rich Media, Podcasts and HTML emails there is an opportunity for advertisers which is seldom explored; the option of extending their recruitment campaign onto non-recruitment partner sites. We have lost count of the times that we have been asked by the agency for a proposal on using Lifestyle sites, or local newspapers sites (etc) within our group. Yet the number of proposals to actually manifest into a cross network campaign remains a very solitary… one. I am not nearly so arrogant to suggest that I speak for every online media network, but I believe that the debate as evidenced by our inability to convert interest in execution is a valid one.
You see, it seems that advertisers who claim to be interested in reaching the holy grail of the passive job seeker are unwilling to commit the budget required to reach them and opt instead for the job board only strategy. With financial constraints being what they are, I can appreciate that. When the chips are down, would you rather look for a needle in a haystack or a needle in a box of needles? Are these advertisers missing out on the opportunity of reaching a gold mine of talent? Or are they maximising their budget by going to where they can be sure to find job seekers.
On the one hand, spreading the net in this way would massively extend the reach of an ad campaign and potentially attract a hitherto unexplored talent pool. But the cost associated with running a campaign visible and frequent enough to out-muscle the Display Advertisers who inhabit these sites is usually considerably higher than the kind of costs they would normally pay on a job board.
So should the advertiser remain within the confines of the Recruitment Platform? It might be more cost effective in reaching candidates, but in doing that would the advertiser have to forego the option of reaching that potentially highly employable casual browser who might be open to the suggestion of changing job and employer?
We are lucky to have the luxury to offer this. In my experience, asking a Newspaper Ad Director if we could move a recruitment ad out of classified and into run of paper would inevitably be met with hilarity. Or a beating. Client requirements were of secondary concern to protecting the micro-markets evolved out of decades of tradition. But even Newspapers are changing now, embracing the concept of ‘Cross Media’ in order to fight for survival in the advertising market.
This IS an exciting industry, one that is changing all the time and we have a fight on our hands to convince our advertisers that the many different strategies that we can suggest aren’t just innovation for novelty’s sake. Will 2007 be the year that Web Recruitment 2.0 explodes into the marketplace? One thing’s for sure; we’re sitting here with our blast goggles on and enough dynamite to do the job as soon as they are willing to go to war. Space Mountain
Oh who am I kidding, this is much more exciting than Disney World.