It’s no news that Instagram has become one of the most popular platforms for social recruiting. Candidates spend more time there than on Facebook or LinkedIn nowadays – and many recruiters who understand the current market take full advantage of it. Building a solid social media strategy for recruitment can skyrocket the number of placements you make. It’s likely you’ve got your Facebook and LinkedIn recruitment strategy nailed, but have you thought about how you could be recruiting candidates on Instagram?
You might be thinking that Instagram is just purely for selfies and holiday pics, but research has shown as much as 80% of Instagram users engage with business accounts too. With figures like this, it’s clear that Instagram is an opportunity to tap into fresh talent pools that you can’t afford to miss – particularly in a candidate-short market.
Knowing how to get started with your Instagram recruitment strategy is often the hardest part, so let’s take a look at some ideas that will help you get the ball rolling so you can start reaching candidates that other recruiters aren’t finding yet.
When recruiting on Instagram, your efforts will fall into one of two categories: Attracting talent (inbound recruiting) and sourcing talent (outbound recruitment).
For attracting talent
If you’re thinking it’s too difficult to attract talent on Instagram as a recruitment agency and that it only really works for in-house teams, try telling this to Carmichael and their 126,000 Instagram followers!
There are loads of ways you can be using Instagram to attract talent. Here’s a few ideas to get you started…
Build a brand identity
A well-developed and recognisable brand is key for building trust, and Instagram is the perfect platform for this.
For in-house recruitment teams, this will be easier as you’re likely to have an established brand and a marketing team dedicated to brand awareness, but if you don’t have a branded careers Instagram account, this is definitely something you should consider. Remember that the content shared on the company account will be focused on your customers, not your future employees, so this won’t have much of an impact on recruitment.
For recruitment agencies, Instagram is a really effective tool for developing your brand identity, authenticity, and trust. If you establish your distinct branding colours and style, you can use this to create a look that really jumps out of news feeds.
Here’s a list of recruitment agency’s we think are killing it on Instagram right now.
Showcase your personality
Instagram is great for sharing ‘behind the scenes’ content so audiences can get to know the people behind a business – and candidates love this! Use the platform to give your followers a sneak peek into your company culture and use this as a marketing tool.
In-house teams will be able to use any behind-the-scenes content for employer branding purposes, as this will give them a snapshot of the people they could be working with and what could be their next office.
But behind-the-scenes content is not just for in-house teams. Nowadays, most candidates will look up agencies that contact them to see what they’re like before agreeing to be put forward for a role (so make sure your profiles are selling you well!). An agency with a good personality presence on Instagram will be recognised as one that’s forward-thinking, transparent, and that cares about their team (and their candidates).
Use hashtags – the right way
Hashtags are the key to getting found on Instagram. They categorise your content and show it to people that are interested in what you’re offering – but you have to use them right.
A lot of potential candidates are following specific hashtags to see posts from various creators about their topic of interest. By following the #techrecruitment you would get posts popping up in your feed from accounts that you don’t even follow (yet) because they’re related to that hashtag.
If you recruit within a certain niche, hashtag everything you do on Instagram to get yourself found. You can add them to your posts, in your comments, or even to your stories (you can hide them by making them too small to see or making the text the same colour as the background). Don’t go overboard with it though - five hashtags are the optimum number.
You can also include hashtags in your Instagram Reels. Which takes me to my next point…
Use Reels… and a lot of them!
If you’ve not used Instagram Reels yet, it’s basically just an additional feature that allows users to post short videos. After TikTok took over the social media world, all the other platforms implemented short-form video content in order to keep up with the trend. If you’re still hesitant, maybe the fact that statistically posting reels is the best way to go viral on Instagram in 2022 will convince you!
The best chance of getting a lot of reels views is following the current trends – and those change day-to-day, so you need to be quick. And no, you don’t have to post silly dancing videos, if that’s what you were thinking. You can capitalise on trends in many ways – from using a trending sound in the background of your video to making a funny twist on a trending topic that’s relevant to your niche.
For sourcing candidates
Use x-ray and Boolean search on Instagram
You’ll probably be used to running Boolean searches on job boards and LinkedIn when sourcing candidates, but did you know you can do this on Instagram, too?
Hop over to Google and type in the following:
site:instagram.com (C# OR 'Software Developer' OR SQL OR Dev) AND (Glasgow)
This will present you with a list of Instagram profiles that contain any of these terms and are based in Glasgow. I just tried this and 38 profiles popped up!
Engage with your followers
One big mistake a lot of brands make on all social media channels (not just Instagram) is that they think posting content is all they need to do to grow their followers. But actually engaging with people that makes you stand out and builds your network.
So, get liking and commenting on candidates’ posts to boost your profile and build your reputation as a brand that cares about its audience.
Post polls, or even do Q&A’s to show your audience you care about their opinions and that you can also create engaging industry discussions that people will be interested in and want to reply to.
To learn about building a bullet-proof social media strategy for all platforms, have a read of our eBook below!
As Senior Digital Marketer at Firefish, Amy keeps our Firefish customers up to date with the latest news from the Aquarium.