A lot of search firms I speak with, see social media either as a waste of time and resources or a wildcard marketing initiative that has little impact and is not quantifiable. Instead - they lean into other strategies such as email marketing campaigns - sending marketing blasts to their marketing lists of known prospects and clients collected from networking events and sources across the web.
Just as the world of search continues to transform and evolve, so should your marketing strategies and tactics. Social media affords a search firm and search consultant the ability to remain front and center of prospects and clients on a daily and consistent basis. In addition, as followers engage with your content and posts, your marketing message is spread beyond your immediate network to other like minded individuals and stakeholders amplifying your brand exposure, services and message. Let's look at the basics of social media marketing for a search firm.
Email Marketing Is Limiting.
The truth is that there are two main issues with your email marketing lists and depending on this as your primary marketing tool. Your marketing lists are likely outdated as talent and clients move on to new opportunities at different companies, and these lists are so generalized it is difficult to create a powerful and relevant marketing message that resonates with your core audience to drive action.
Additionally - email marketing campaigns limit the number of times you can be reaching your prospects directly (1-4 times a month). With the increasing intensity of email phishing scams and spamming, email filters are becoming more sophisticated and your email blast will likely end up at the bottom of a prospects' spam folder, never opened and left unread.
As individuals and candidates make career moves, their email address will be left behind with their old company and eventually expunged from existence, resulting in a dead marketing lead. Their social media account - on the other hand - carries with them wherever they are in their career progression and remains a constant in their daily lives.
Social Media Is Indexible In Real-time.
When a client or prospect needs to partner with an executive search firm or find a search consultant, they likely will not begin their search by sorting through their email inbox looking for your marketing email from 3 months ago. Google, SEO and search engines are the backbone of information across the internet. Social media is no exception when it comes to indexing by search engines and can easily appear in search results when a user searches for "Life sciences executive search firm." Of course they will have to scroll past and ignore the ads for SHREK firms that appear at the top of search results, but eventually find themselves on your LinkedIn profile or company website.
Social Media Creates Clout In An Industry Driven By Reputation And Referrals.
Not only does social media keep you front and center for prospects and clients on a consistent basis on a familiar channel, but it supports your personal and professional brand and showcases your expertise, extensive network and relationships. Executive search is largely a word-of-mouth and referral driven industry, where happy clients and candidates refer their friends and colleagues to work with a search firm that he/she/they trust. Prior to introduction, a referral will usually search LinkedIn for you or your search firm to get an idea of your experience and expertise and begin to form an idea of how or why they should possibly work with you. Social media posts, activity and engagements are catalogued and available for profile viewers to read and consume to gain a better understanding of the value you provide.
About The Author.
Thaddeus Andres is the Founder of Retaindly. He has been working as a marketing expert serving executive search firms and individual executive recruiters for over 12 years. He has an intricate first-hand knowledge of the executive search process, the value executive search provides and how to position this to clients. He has created websites, implemented lead generation campaigns, driven paid and unpaid social media ad campaigns, curated email nurture campaigns, elevated brands and published over 200 thought leadership content pieces.