In our world that is increasingly interrupt driven, reaching a candidate online on THEIR terms when they will be most receptive to a message is crucial. Just as I see the potential in using data to effectively target and market to candidates via email marketing (see the post here) – I also see the use of behavioral targeting for recruitment brand building as another place where we have TONS to learn from the online retail marketing space.
What is Behavioral targeting? The terms used in searches are one type of data that can be used to target ads. Data is also kept about WHAT surfers are doing: shopping, travel planning, consuming news etc. Online behavioral information can provide huge clues to identifying the time when a candidate might be receptive to an employer’s message – “this is the aperture moment.” Understanding the heaps of mined data however is still in its infancy and knowing what is relevant, when – is where it gets sticky.
Yahoo is trying to make great strides in behavioral targeting of ads as a key differentiator from Google (we have yet to see what the Google/AOL deal will mean for behaviorally targeted graphical ads). Yahoo! has allowed advertisers to deliver banners based on search behavior for several years, but only immediately following entry of a term. Now – you can advertise your employer brand to anyone that you know has searched for say “nurse jobs” or “actuary” during the last TWO days. “Click-through” rates on some types of behaviorally targeted ads can be 200% higher than normal ads, according to internal focus group studies cited by Fayyad as cited in a recent Forbes article.
We need to pay more attention to online advertising trends by retailers and figure out innovative ways to make employer brand messaging relevant – on the candidate’s terms.