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Brick by Virtual Brick

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My original presentation on talent communities was all about theory and the why you should argument. After feedback from audience members, I realized they might need some tactical ideas as well. So …

My original presentation on talent communities was all about theory and the why you should argument. After feedback from audience members, I realized they might need some tactical ideas as well. So this presentation is a 30 minute a dy, weekly plan to help you start on building your talent community. GO!


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  • 1. Learn how to tactically build a responsive community2. Identifying and location your target talent market3. Creating content and community messaging4. How to build out and implement your editorial calendar 5. Choosing the right platform
  • The most important part of any community is the WHO. Identifying the right people is key. Because so much time is taken to assess cultural fit and the right role specifications, TCs work best (provide most ROI) if the role is "low barrier to entry" and "recurring". Think customer service reps, insurance agents etc. While this can look on the outside like "production line" thinking, I warn clients not to think this way at all as it will damage any relationship they are looking to create with the people in the TC. Take that profile and choose the specific high points. These become parts of your Key Performance Indicator Document. Marketers build documents like this all the time. Once they’ve identified their target market, they go about setting up camp in the places where those people are. Some tools to try: Facebook Insights (use the advertisement tool to discover just how many people are in your “target market” or “area”, Google Keyword tool to find out what sort of terms are being discussed in your industry.  This doesn’t have to take a long time. Speak to your hiring managers, talk to department heads, ask for 15 minutes with your marketing team. Make a template for your own reference.
  • Spend fifteen minutes a day researching and inviting the folks you’d like to be a part of your talent community. This can take many forms, you can write a blog post for a skills community that is relevant, you can spend some time with your internal team finding out where they go and what they are interested in or you can search tools like Twellow, Facebook, and LinkedIn Groups for new discoveries about your target market. Bringing them in. Once you’ve identified the people you want to join your talent community, you can begin the invitation process. The first place you might want to start is in your own Applicant Tracking System. It’s possible that the system or platform you choose for your talent community provider may have an invitation feature but it’s simple enough to do it yourself with an email or social marketing system like Constant Contact, Salesforce, or AWeber (AWeber has a facebook connect sign up option, which generally means the integrity of the email address used to sign up is higher.)
  • Starting Conversation: I’ve started several communities of my own and helped clients start many many more and this seems to be the scariest part for people. What if no one pipes up? The truth is, even in our lightning fast social age, conversations and a certain comfort level take a while to achieve. In the age of facebook when it’s harder to get people to hush up, it’s difficult to remember when people weren’t so eager to share every little thing online. Fortunately, when it comes to professional networks and jobs, less is more. Starting conversation around your profiles’ interests and professional qualifications is what matters. You might have a hopping community if all you do is post memes and funny jokes but it will be shallow and difficult to source from. You don’t want that. So look to professional groups like on LinkedIn, Quora and Focus, to see what people in the industry are talking about. Form questions rather than state opinions and bring the conversation to your chosen platform when you can.
  • Curating Content: Curating is a recently created verb that made a lot of community managers very happy. It’s difficult to create new and interesting content every day (yes, you DO still have to have content of your own) and it’s harder when the web is literally chock full of fascinating factoids and articles that you’d love to put in front of your community members. Every talent community is different and yours will have its own rules (including what you can repost and what you cannot). Keep it simple, provide your talent community members with interesting content in an easy to digest format. If that means plain text emails visible on a non-smart phone because that’s what your target market reads, then so be it. If it means videos consumed on an iPad, that’s fine too. Test out different distribution methods and see what works. Again, your profile should help with this.
  • Messaging Focus: Building communities can get kinda fun. So make sure that you don’t lose focus of the real messaging. Chances are you are building this community for a specific recruiting, sourcing or workforce planning right? So keep that in front of you. Get as many requirements settled ahead of time and keep your evergreen requirements top of mind. Which brings us to your editorial calendar…
  • Lindsay
  • Choosing a platform: This can be one of the hardest parts of creating a community. So take some time and do the research. There are several very good platforms on which you can build a solid foundation. Free options: Facebook Group, LinkedIn Group, Branchout Network, Ning, Wordpress. BraveNewTalent The benefits of a free platform: Need I say it? It’s free  Additionally, you have all the time access to your data and the ability to move with the technology. The cons of a free platform: It’s not built for building talent communities, it’s generally built for some other purpose, therefore you have to really understand the tenets behind community management. Additionally, it can be hard to figure out whether or not YOU own the data. Aside from CSV import/export, there are few options for getting your data integrated with your ATS or HRIS. Paid options: TalentCircles, TribePad, Bullhorn, BranchOut Recruiter, Ascendify, Findly, Jobs2Web The Benefits of a Paid Platform: These tools are built for recruiting sourcing, they’re generally built for integration with other systems and give you access to your data. The cons of a paid platform: sometimes longer implementation times, over reliance on the platform, costs CAN overrun the eventual ROI of a talent community.
  • Transcript

    • 1. Brick by Virtual BrickBuilding Talent Communities withpractical suggestions in under 30minutes a dayw/Maren Hogan
    • 2. What We’re Going To Do!1. Learn how to tactically build a responsivecommunity2. Identifying and location your target talentmarket3. Creating content and communitymessaging4. How to build out and implement youreditorial calendar5. Choosing the right platform
    • 3. Tactical Building Blocks• Identifying The Right People• Curating Content• Starting Conversation• Messaging Focus• Planning Tools• Choosing a Platform• Measuring Response
    • 4. Who?
    • 5. Write this downBuild an “idealemployee profile”
    • 6. Invite Them InMarketing• Has to research target markets and tailor their messaging to several.• Must use multiple distribution channels.• Works with customer service to ensure seamless experience.• Has lower cost of acquisition.• Candidates are different as are their expectations for a “good” experience.• As application channels increase, so too must the communication loops.• Candidate experience doesn’t happen in a vacuum.
    • 7. How to Reach Them?• Loop11 • LinkedIn• Silverback 2.0 • Salesforce• Omniture • Constant Contact• Youtube • Aweber• Facebook • YOUR ATS
    • 8. Rapid Response TeamNo it’s not easy, butwhether you do it throughsocial channels, thetelephone, auto-respondersor a CRM, you MUSTrespond to people.No excuses.
    • 9. Tools• Gmail, Outlook (autoresponders, canned responses)• Salesforce/Sugar/ACT• Autoresponders or timed responses via Vertical Response, Constant Contact, MailChimp, Aweber• Social channels inc. Twitter• There are several tools, including Gist, Rapportive, Sprout Social and more that will allow you to keep track of people that email a certain address.• Many of these are free or very low cost and allow you to import/export CSV files.
    • 10. Market researchA good marketer knows his or her markets, all of them. How canyou use this information to your advantage? You got it.Networks, communities, or just contact!
    • 11. Tools• Eloqua • Research can be• Survey Monkey conducted via follow• QuestionPro up surveys• Facebook Insights • Beta groups can be used on LinkedIn• Dive into your ATS data • Testing tools within your career site and• Your own two hands facebook • Try your own career site.
    • 12. Talent Communities:Make people want to be there.
    • 13. Content MarketingGot a captive audience that needs something? Give it tothem. They may not be today’s hire, but they could betomorrow’s (or a customer!)
    • 14. Tools• RSS feeds • If content creation is• Storify, Paper.li, etc out of the• Slideshare question, try curation.• Video • Use questions/pictures to• Good old fashioned start conversations. email • People love video, especially when it shows them the answer to a burning question.
    • 15. Content is no longer king.{Conversation} is KING.
    • 16. Do this:Create a loose editorial calendar.
    • 17. PlanningAutomation. Say it with me.
    • 18. Choosing a platform
    • 19. {the recruiting ones}
    • 20. a {platform} isthe least ofyour worries.
    • 21. Tactical Building Blocks• Identifying The Right People• Curating Content• Starting Conversation• Messaging Focus• Planning Tools• Choosing a Platform• Measuring Response
    • 22. You need a role model.
    • 23. You need help.• marketing• administrative• interns• executive• legal• {employees}

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