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Recruitment start-ups need to recognise how to ‘sell’ themselves to the market

Simplicity has warned that unless new start-ups learn how to ‘sell’ themselves fast, their chances of success could be over before they have even begun.


With 81% of employers planning to increase their hiring activity over the next three months and 79% of business leaders positive about the economy, Simplicity says it comes as no surprise that the recruitment industry is seeing a record number of new agencies opening their doors for the first time.


Simplicity has worked with hundreds of recruitment start-ups over the last ten years. Critical to the long-term success of the new businesses it has supported has been the realisation among these recruitment entrepreneurs that in order to raise their profile and drive market penetration, embracing basic marketing and public relations techniques is not only important, it is essential.


Positive employer hiring intentions and a strengthening of the UK economy is a huge incentive for many would-be recruitment entrepreneurs to go it alone. The challenge they face, however, is knowing how to sell themselves against their competition – all of which will be established businesses – and position themselves as the recruiter-of-choice.


To help start-up recruiters, Simplicity has highlighted five key areas that should form the focus of their promotional strategy:


1. Use social media


LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook have all celebrated ten years in business – they’re no fad and if used in the right way they can each do wonders to raise your profile online. The secret to social media success is to post often.


Share content that will be of interest to your clients and candidates, such as news stories from within their sectors, careers advice, your most recent blog post or the latest white paper that you think they might be interested in. Avoid treating social media as a free platform to advertise your jobs – if that’s all you use it for you will lose more followers than you gain!


2. Think mobile


In 2015, with 50% of web traffic now coming from mobile devices such as tablets and smartphones, Google made a controversial change to its algorithms to benefit those companies whose websites are optimised for mobile and tablet devices.


The changes mean that sites with a mobile optimised version will be boosted in the search engine listings. Consequently, sites that are not optimised will drop in the listings. It is therefore imperative to build a site that is optimised for mobile devices in order to reach as many people as possible.


3. Create engaging content


Imagine walking into your local shopping centre and you see a fantastic window display promoting something that you really want and need. But as you walk through the door you are met with nothing – just an empty store. Do you stay or do you leave?


It’s the same with your website. Clients and candidates will see your shop window (your home page) and leave as quickly as they entered if there is no content that engages them and fulfils their needs. Whether you are writing a blog, newsletter or article, the material you upload needs to be interesting and original and gives visitors enough of a reason to stay on your site and even prompt an enquiry.


4. Fill the gap in your market


Why does your agency exist in the first place? Clients and candidates need to know whom you are and what you are trying to achieve, so be clear on what makes you different and make that difference clear.


All too often we see recruiters describe themselves as ‘different’, ‘innovative’ and even ‘game-changing’ but they fail to show how these adjectives are manifested in practice. Back up such claims with evidence of how you have demonstrated these things in practice.


5. Look impressive


The first impression a recruitment firm will make is the visual image. Therefore, it is vitally important to create a logo and design that is impressive and well suited to the sector you are working in.


Avoid creating a logo that is visually stunning but completely inappropriate for your target audience. There needs to be a compromise between a good visual and the intended market. Remember, you want a ‘look’ that is memorable and recognisable, so choose one that gives the look of an established business, sparks a sense of trust and speaks of confidence.



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