Last week we told you about the story of Jon and Charlie, two regular guys with different approaches to making conversation. Jon got all the friends because he knew that everyone has a different point of view, a different set of preferences, motivators and behaviours and rather than talking about himself in the same way to everyone at the party (we’ve all met people who do that, right?), he listened to the conversation first and adapted what he wanted to say to match the people he was talking to at that particular moment.
The ability to do this is one of the characteristics that sets humans apart from other species. Empathy and understanding are basic principles of psychology. Jon knows that everyone is different and uses that to his advantage.
So why as employment marketers do so many organisations ignore this? Grouping people together into neat little boxes? Assuming that we all consume information in the same manner, hanging out in the same places, doing the same things – the things that marketers manipulate us to want to do.
Like sheep acting and thinking in the same way. It’s actually quite insulting when you stop and think about it.
Create a message. Identify an audience. Build a media plan. Penetrate that audience. Hope your message sticks. That just doesn’t work as a model any longer because in a world where we are bombarded with information all the time, content that’s not directly relevant becomes background noise.
Back to Jon’s point of view. We’re all motivated differently. We have unique interests and ambitions. As a result we hang out in different communities and consume information in different ways, having different conversations in different ways with different people.
And therein is the future of marketing (and especially employment marketing). People building real relationships with other people as a means of selling a product, service or career. Having conversations (dialogue rather than monologue), about mutually interesting topics, helping each other where possible, adding value all the time.
Where do those conversations happen? Wherever the people you need to speak with are hanging out. That could be at events, across the meeting room, on social media platforms – it’s a fragmented environment.
Where do you start? Well, there are two options here.
The first is to go to where they are. The second is to pull them to you and build your own community.
So where are they?
Here are four easy tips you can use right now to find where the right people for you are hanging out so you can start talking with them:
Twitter chats, Linkedin and Facebook groups and Google+ communities
These might seem obvious, but it’s quite rare to see employers make best use of these simple and effective options. Whatever your interest is – no matter how specific or oddball, you can bet your bottom dollar that there will be an existing community that you can join, add value to and build your reputation. Google+ Communities are particularly useful for this, and we’ve talked about these before.
Facebook Graph Search
Graph search really allows you to effectively wade through the exabytes of data that Facebook has collected on people since launch. So for example, you can search for ‘Groups of people who like TOPIC and like PAGE NAME’ or ‘Favourite interests of people who like PAGE NAME’ to get a great understanding of where they spend their time online.
This can be particularly handy when researching the hobbies and interests of those who like your competitor’s pages, for example.
For a full list of the search possibilities and examples, it’s worth having a look here: http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/facebook-graph-search-marketing/
Forums are an incredibly useful place when it comes to listening and contributing. Job boards like Indeed already post jobs on specialist forums – but why pay when you can do this for free? Taking the time to respond to questions and just generally being helpful will have a far greater impact on your reputation than just posting ads.
Take a look at all these students asking for help on Moneysavingexpert.com – they have a dedicated student money saving forum with plenty of questions waiting for you to answer: http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/forumdisplay.php?f=25
This is more of a manual technique than a tool, and won’t work for everyone…but chances are you’ll find be able to find positive or negative conversations about you, and join in right away.
Try Google searching the below:
- “like” + [your brand name]
- “love” + [your brand name]
- “I wish” + [your brand name]
- “sucks” + [you or a competitors brand name]
- “hate” + [you or a competitors brand name]
Some of the results might surprise you…
We hope these little tips help you find out where you should be spending your time online.
Next week we’ll be talking about the laws of attraction and how you can bring the party to you, so don’t forget to follow our blog using the follow button at the top right and you’ll get notified when we publish new content.
In the meantime, if you want to talk to us about how we can help you find and talk with the right talent, then give us a call on 020 7183 2556 or drop an email over to firstname.lastname@example.org to set up a coffee.