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Recruitment Marketing Maturity: Where Do You Stand?

Recruitment Marketing Maturity - Where Do You Stand?

Not all recruiting teams are at the same stage in their recruitment marketing journey.

Some - between 16% and 35% - have sophisticated marketing practices in place, like smart nurture campaigns, a sharp employer brand, and some really good candidate data management and performance monitoring.

But many more rely mostly on batch inMail and automated job postings on social media. They are still missing a coherent employer brand or a comprehensive communication plan.

Where does your team stand in that spectrum? We built this framework so you can answer that question at a quick glance.



Every recruiting team communicates in some form with candidates.

As recruiters shifts from a reactive to a proactive mindset, however, their communication strategy becomes more about building personalized relationships, and less about broadcasting company information and hoping that someone, somewhere, will see it.

What does that look like? Instead of an email blast here, and a job posting on twitter there, the team has a single communication plan that takes into account everything from email campaigns to social media to career site to events communications. All those pieces have a consistent tone and messaging, and are scheduled around each other.

A sophisticated communication strategy is highly targeted. Recruiters at the high performer stage have usually set up automated workflows to segment candidates, add them to talent pools, and reach out to them with smart nurture campaigns tailored to their backgrounds or ages or areas of interest.

They are also aware of where candidates are in their journey with the company, and nurture them accordingly. Ideally, when a team is at the advanced stage, no two of their candidate journeys look the same, because they have done a great job tailoring every touch point up until the application.

Candidate Awareness Journey

At this level of personalization, communication really goes both ways, and the recruiter has a relationship with candidates: they know what knowledge they’ve gathered about the company so far, and what else they need to learn. They have answered their questions and suggested new content to look at. They might even have met at an event and touched base afterward. All of this, before a single application was submitted.


Every marketing strategy relies on two things: segmentation, or how you will structure and target your market, and positioning, how you will present yourself to the market.

Recruitment marketing is no different: After deciding what candidates they are interested in targeting, recruiters have to decide how they will position the company. That’s where the employer brand comes in.

Most of the time, recruiters find out that they already have the making of a brand in things like the tone and focus of their job descriptions, the benefits they provide to employees, or the criteria for career progression and promotions in the company.

Chances are, however, that it’s not a well-defined brand, and that there is no conscious effort to promote it or unify it across all communication channels. Those things happen at the later stages of the maturity cycle: the team formalizes the Employer Value Proposition, and defines the voice, values and personality of the company.

But that’s not the end of the marketing team’s work. In 2017, Aberdeen published that 62% of recruiting teams think that their job is done when they have finished developing an employer brand. Advanced marketing teams, however, don’t see it that way. If anything, the employer brand is only a start, a central pillar on which they will keep building in the future.


A good strategy is measurable and improvable. You know your team is in a good place when it can pinpoint exactly where the recruitment marketing strategy is underperforming just by looking at a dashboard.

Most teams keep track of post-application metrics such as time to hire or offer acceptance rate, but they don’t put nearly as much effort into understanding how they’re performing before the application.

According to our State of Recruitment Marketing 2018 report, only 19% of companies measure employer brand awareness, and even less measure pipeline growth, career site conversion, or email campaign performance.

But to be able to monitor and improve their marketing activities, they need to know where in the pipeline they are struggling: are candidates not subscribing to talent communities? Or are they subscribing but not engaging with the content? Are candidates coming to the career pages from job advertising or from social media, and which is a better investment at this time?

Analytics also help recruiters build a more sophisticated communication plan. With the right data, recruiters can be extremely personalized in their interactions, and build relationships at scale.

They can share different information depending on whether a candidate has gone to an event, been on a career page, or engaged with a specific piece of content. Without good analytics in place, it would be impossible to have that kind of personalization at scale.

No matter where you stand in the recruitment marketing maturity cycle, you have room for improvement. The 4 stages in our framework are only relevant because recruitment marketing is still developing as a corporate function, and even sophisticated recruitment teams have a lot to learn still from consumer marketing.

With the wider adoption of recruitment marketing technology and the development of marketing skills in recruitment teams, in a few years, we will probably see “advanced” practices become table stakes, and personalized and targeted candidate relationships become the norm.

State of Recruitment Marketing 2018

Dive deeper into our State of Recruitment Marketing report, and explore what is on the mind of recruiters this year when it comes to recruitment marketing, including analytics, challenges, and best practices.

[image-caption][download the full report.]( ) [image-caption-end]