Outside the Box Engagement Tools

If you’re doing the obvious stuff when it comes to social media recruiting or engagement (Facebook fan pages, branded Twitter account, blog, etc.), you’re fighting an uphill battle. 

It’s a crowded space out there: after all, if there’s a fundamental reason for social media’s appeal as a business and marketing tool, it’s the truism that everyone’s on it. 

And with upwards of a billion users speaking dozens of languages updating millions of closed, interdependent communities (which is, pretty much, the definition of that ‘network’ part of ‘social networks’), it can be hard to make your voice heard. 

If a tweet fell in the forest, and no one was around…

It’s not enough to be active on social media; that activity must meet specific business objectives or outcomes and, like any activity, must be measurable, scalable and sustainable.  But too often, in its nascence, social business has been treated largely as a necessary, inscrutable evil, like trust-building exercises or Successories posters.

It’s not a best practice just because everyone’s doing it.

This may come as a news flash, but social media, like talent management, is a process-oriented and metrics driven discipline that, when implemented properly, has a presence in every part of the employee life cycle, from recruiting to transitioning.

It’s also a discipline that’s predicated on winning the hearts and minds of top talent through building relationships, and that talent’s value is predicated primarily on the power of their referrals and references.  This is, coincidentally, the entire point of a talent community in the first place.

So how do you make your message stand out in the noise, and turn communities into candidates in a space that’s crowded with a litany of consultants, competitors and competing agendas? 

Give a man tweet, you get content feed for a day.  Teach a man to tweet, and you get content feed for a lifetime.

Over a series of 5 articles, we’ll explore some effective, largely untapped approaches to online engagement, that are more likely to get noticed than a “like” and more likely to get a response than @ replying:

5. Give Klout   

You can question the value of having Klout, the accuracy of its scores, but the fact remains that influence, perceived or actual, is something that everyone wants, and that it’s crucial on social media. 

And for the first time in human capital history, we’ve got the ability to quantifiably track and measure “influence,” while delineating the most influential members of any given network.  Including your employee population.  While the kinks are still being worked out, Klout has emerged as the market leader in the emerging influence analytics industry. 

Register with Klout and you’ll be able to track your influence – and effectiveness – and how it stacks up against competitors, candidates, clients and your own internal benchmarks.  Signing up is one click using the Facebook Connect feature, and the basic product is free.

Once registered with Klout, you have the ability to give +K (Klout’s equivalent of a like) to up to 5 people a day.  ‘Klout’ is given for specific areas of expertise, like “recruiting & staffing,” “HR” or “talent management,” so it’s an easy way to engage (and search) around specific skills or subject expertise.  Plus, you don’t have to be linked or networked with someone to give them Klout, however, the user will receive a notification with a link to your profile, so it’s also a good way to build your network, too.

The other great thing about Klout is that you know the relative influence and reach of the user before giving them a +K, and while their formula remains a secret, here’s something that’s not: those with the highest scores are also extremely likely to be regular Klout users.

That means they know that since users can only give Klout five times a day and there’s no way to automate it, it’s a highly selective, and highly personalized, engagement tool.  Plus, giving Klout actually plays a role in building a user’s Klout score. 

This score actually means something to a lot of top talent; having your employment brand help build personal brands of clients, candidates and influencers sends a powerful message about your employer value prop and corporate culture

Not to mention, like all worthwhile networking, the gesture’s more than likely going to be reciprocated. 

And ultimately, influence is the difference between an accepted and rejected offer.

Part 1 in a 5 part series.  In part 2, we’ll rock down to “Empire Avenue” and explore the basics, and practical recruitment applications, of this social stock market simulation.



The SHRM Blog does not accept solicitation for guest posts.

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