How to decide on the most ideal HR marketing strategy?


HR marketing strategy is a mandatory strategy for most organizations today.

Especially fast-growth companies, organizations going through a change or even a business transformation and organizations that regularly hire and struggle with finding and retaining talents.

When do you need an HR marketing strategy?

HR marketing, or talent marketing, is the same for your hiring, as product marketing is for the sales of your products.

A growth organization that hires regularly will benefit from an HR marketing strategy.

Hiring without an HR marketing strategy is the same if you desperately tried to sell a lot, but all your business did was send expensive salespeople out and about trying to find prospective customers without any idea where to look and what to say.

Susanna Rantanen

Hiring without an HR marketing strategy is the same if you desperately try to sell a lot. Still, all your business did was send expensive salespeople out and about, trying to find prospective customers without knowing where to look and what to say.

It doesn’t mean you will not sell, but you probably miss out on many sales opportunities while you search for a needle in a haystack.

And what’s more, the cost of sales gets high very quickly.

The value of strategic talent marketing

Are your vacancies like a blank coffee cup in need of a label?

Imagine a blank white coffee mug.

Imagine a row of those in a supermarket.

Not just one row but a whole shelf of blank white coffee mugs on supermarket shelves.

A vacancy on a job board is like a blank white coffee mug.

What are the odds your ideal candidate ends up picking your white, blank coffee mug?

HR marketing helps you ensure your ideal candidates are more likely to become aware of your vacancies, want to consider applying and send their applications by your deadline.

The three primary options for your HR Marketing Strategy

Depending on your business, your talent market, and your competition for the same talents, your primary options for your HR marketing strategy are:

  1. Recruitment marketing & communications strategy
  2. Employer awareness strategy
  3. Employer branding strategy

Without one of these as your chosen HR marketing strategy, you will likely end up with the most common and worst strategy of all: The Ad Hoc Marketing Strategy.

Let me run you through these three options.

#1 Recruitment marketing & communications strategy

A recruitment marketing & communications strategy is the best choice in three specific scenarios:

(1) Recruitment agencies recruiting on behalf of their clients.

(2) Organizations that hire a lot and are limited in talent marketing resources.

(3) Your company has a strong sales culture.

This HR marketing strategy focuses on three goals:

(1) Building awareness of the upcoming recruitment process and the role.

(2) Getting relevant candidates to consider the opportunity actively.

(3) Converting relevant job seekers into applicants by the deadline.

The communications part of the strategy focuses on the following:

  • Improving candidate experiences
  • Getting candidates to commit to your selection process and timeline
  • Nurturing your candidates while you make hiring decisions

In this podcast episode, I share some examples of recruitment marketing goals and how to measure the impact of your recruitment marketing and communication activities. This is, of course, essential information when you plan your recruitment marketing and communications strategy.

#2 Employer awareness strategy

Your second primary option is the employer awareness strategy, which we don’t discuss much among employer branding professionals. However, it is a mandatory strategic phase before moving on to the employer branding phase.

I separate it from the employer branding strategy because not all organizations require an employer brand, and it helps you understand the difference between growing awareness and building employer brand affinity.

An employer awareness strategy focuses on the following:

(1) Building awareness in your relevant talent audiences, internally and externally.

(2) Clarifying the accurate and timely employer images your audiences must connect with your organization.

(3) Growing the size of your relevant talent audiences and becoming better known as an employer in your relevant talent market.

The purpose of an employer awareness strategy is to get your organization on the (mind) map of your relevant talent audiences.

Susanna Rantanen

You can easily tie the employer awareness marketing activities with your recruitment marketing, making this an excellent choice for organizations that hire a lot and need to focus most resources on recruiting.

Listen to this podcast episode to learn more about employer awareness strategy.

#3 Employer branding strategy

Branding is not the same as marketing. And this applies to HR marketing too.

When growing employer awareness is about getting your organization on the (mind) map of your relevant talent audiences, employer branding is about getting your organization in the hearts of your target talents.

The difference is that becoming better known does not mean your audience ends up choosing you.

Becoming their most preferred choice is what employer branding aims for.

The key to effective employer branding is to start with a sound strategy. My Magnetic Employer Branding Strategy™️ is an example of a very sound employer branding strategy.

This HR marketing strategy is essential for organizations that struggle in the war for talent and are constantly battling with stronger competitors.

Like all branding, employer branding, too, is about appealing on the emotional level with a differentiated position and offering from all your competitors.

What is so special about actual employer branding is that it is very much about emotionally influencing your ideal talent audiences.

The stronger this emotional connection is, the more engaged and committed talent audience you have. Your organization is their preferred choice, and even passive job seekers are likely to jump on the chance of becoming employed by your company when their ideal role becomes vacant.

2 Responses

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