Personal branding... What’s in it for me? It takes too much time. There’s no immediate return on investment… I hear you, but here are 7 reasons you should work on building your personal brand today.
1°) Other agency recruiters are not doing it.
Believe me, as someone who has been recruiting agency recruiters for the past 3.5 years, you’ll be lucky to find a recruiter outside of LinkedIn. Back when I had delusions that recruiters were social, I came up with a great list of Twitter accounts for agency recruiters and then, my heart got crushed: the tweets were only a list of open jobs… the last of which was, more often than not from 2014… I wasn’t going to learn anything about these recruiters or their recruitment speciality from their Twitter account.
2°) You want your candidates to know what industry you recruit for.
Ideally, you’re a specialised recruiter, you work one vertical and know all about it. Your candidates want to know that! Help them find you by telling the world about what you recruit for. Share content that is targeted at your candidate market. Interact with them on social media BEFORE you need them. Long story short, ad value to your vertical.
3°) You want your clients and future clients to see that you know your sh*t.
You’re a good recruiter, you do your business development, you get clients on board and you deliver for them? Wouldn’t it be nice if they all remembered you as the go-to person to hire German Inside sales peeps? And not after you’ve been in the industry for 15 years… Well, you’re going to be doing the same thing as with your candidates: add value BEFORE you ask anything from them.
4°) Make your Business Development calls easier.
Yeah, yeah, cold calling is not dead. It will never die in recruitment. You’re selling a service that doesn’t rely on you most of the time, so the inbound sales channel is flawed. Does that mean that your BD calls have to be Antarctica cold? No way! If you interact with your potential clients on social media, if you provide them with valuable content before even calling them, your first call will be a lot warmer. No-one if fundamentally doing things differently in recruitment, however, in 2020, recruiters cannot afford to be anonymous anymore as this is going to be their differentiator.
5°) Stretch your writing muscles.
Over the last 3 months, at Next Generation, we have asked our recruiter to write an article at least every 2 weeks to start building their personal brand online. I have seen some of my colleagues do extremely well, even though they were super nervous at the idea of sharing their thoughts in writing. Obviously, I wasn’t going to ask them to do something that I wouldn’t do, so this article is my 12th, and what I’ve found it that, there’s no point being shy; if you keep writing and publishing articles, you will generate enough content that no-one will notice if a couple of them were sub-par. The more you write, the more comfortable you get, and it will help you hone your writing skills when it comes to writing compelling job ads.
6°) Dump the “I only post professional stuff” attitude.
I’m not saying to post your binge drinking pics on the social media where the privacy settings are either “private” or “public”, however, people buy from people. If you only post job ads and carefully curated pictures of you at the office or at an event, no-one will see the real you; you might as well be a bot for all I know. Show everyone the human being behind the recruiter, give me something to break the ice with you: your dog was being cute, you’re learning Mandarin, you’re growing courgettes on your balcony and you enjoy arguing about the correct pronunciation of gif – all of that is part of your persona. You don’t leave your personality at the door when you go to work, so there’s no reason for your digital brand to be solely work or solely personal.
7°) Didn’t you hear? There’s a world-wide recession.
What are you doing to make yourself different? If you were to lose your job tomorrow alongside your entire team, what would make you different from your ex-colleagues if you all went to interview for the same job? The one with a decent personal brand will get the job. See point 2 and 3: your clients and your candidates know who you are and what you specialise into. The name that you make for yourself in the market will stay with you regardless of how many company changes you make. Working on your personal brand means working for your future self without having to clock years of experience as a recruiter; capitalise on it now. Don’t wait until you need a personal brand to start creating one; it won’t happen overnight and it will take work on your part.
Did I convince you? I hope I did because building your personal brand is a long journey, so you might as well start now.