Category: Top Tips

Creating video in recruitment

Video is easily the fastest growing content type online. The problem recruitment companies face is that it feels expensive and hard to start. It doesn’t have to be though.


What makes a good recruitment video?

Attention. Grab your audience and stand out. This means being selective with the thumbnail you use, the cover image, the title and video description.

Once you have your audiences’ attention it is about making sure the content is good quality to maintain interest through out the video.

Story is crucial in maintaining attention but also delivering a message. Think about the structure of the content and narrative. If you are writing a script then edit in the same way you would a blog or article. Take out anything that isn’t essential.

If you are looking for a simple framework to creating content check out this.

Action. The next steps need to be considered when creating video. Ensure that you have something for your audience to do once they have watched your video – it might be to visit your website, share the video, check out a job or learn about your services.

But it all sounds expensive.

It doesn’t have to be. If you are outsourcing video creation to an agency there are businesses that can work to pretty much any budget.

If you want to start out producing your own content because it is cheaper, you want more control or quicker turn around times then the good news is that it can super simple. In fact you can shoot HD video and edit it entirely for free using your iPhone.

I would recommend investing in a tripod and a phone attachment. These vary in price from a £1 (from Poundland – no joke!) to £30 for a good tripod.

If you can stretch the budget I’d recommend getting a DSLR camera as this will also take good photos that you will be able to use in other places like your website or for social media.

Tips for making video yourself

Do make sure where you are filming is well lit. Aim for natural light, don’t put your subject in direct sunlight as it will wash out your picture.

Do film in a quiet place with limited background noise. If you can’t avoid the background noise then try to be close to the subject or set up a second recording device and record an audio note. These two files can be merged when you edit. You can also buy an external mic to connect to your device.

Do use your tripod. Nothing screams poor quality recording more than the jogging of a camera.

Don’t film portrait. Have your phone horizontal unless you are doing something on Snapchat.

Good luck and get shooting!


How to do Influencer Marketing on Twitter (in 5 simple steps)

You may not have the most influential Twitter account for your particular area of expertise.  But scores of people are just clicks away that you can leverage to help boost your brand and your message.  All you need to do is find them and ask.  Here are five steps to do just that.

Step One.

Start by going to and clicking on the Influencers section.  Search for the topic or areas of expertise that are most relevant.

Here you can see a list of Influencers in the “recruitment marketing” arena

Step Two.

Go to and sign in.  You will be presented with people who are influencers in your space.  Then search for the Expert Tags related to topics that are relevant to you.

On the right you can see the influencers in Recruitment and Staffing as well as their Klout Score

Note that whilst in Buzzsumo you can search for any key words, on Klout you search for tag terms.  For example I can search for “recruitment marketing” on Buzzsumo but on Klout I will have to look for the tags “Human Resources” and for “Recruitment and Staffing”.

For more information on using your Klout score check out this blog on social media audits.

Step Three.

Build a list (either public or private) of these infleuncers on Twitter.  This will make it easy to keep tabs on them, the content they share and the conversations they have.  Start reTweeting and interacting with these influencers.  Hopefully they will recognise you when it comes to contacting them.

Step Four.

Pick a piece of content you would like these inlfuencers to share.  Reach out to each influencer directly and personally.  Whilst contacting them via Twitter is easiest, I would recommend taking more time to craft a compelling message and contact them via LinkedIn, via email (if you can) or via their website / blog.  Below gives you direction for wording that message.

Hi X,

Like you I am really passionate about XYZ area of expertise.  In fact I’ve written a couple of articles on the topic.  I’d love you to take a look if you get the chance.
Here is a link to the piece that I think is most likely to be of interest to you.  I’d love to hear your feedback on it.  LINK.
If you like it I would be really grateful if you could share it.  That would make my day!

All the best,

P.s. Let me know if there is every anything I can do for you.

Step Five.

Set up a search for your website domain (or the content you’ve shared) in a tool like Hootsuite or regularly check back on Twitter using a saved search.  Be sure to thank everyone who shares your posts and articles.

Interact with those Twitter members who have taken an interest by reTweeting or responding to influencer posts of your content.  They should be more responsive.

Get Advanced.

Once you are accustomed to interacting with influencers you may wish to track the outcomes they drive.  One simple way is to share links.  You can see how many times those links have been clicked.  If the influencer is used to receiving requests to share content they may also be familiar with these types of tracking tools.  With, when using their logged-in free version, you are able to customise each bit link (such as

If you use Google Analytics try UTM tracking to get a more comprehensive view of what visitors are doing when they are on your site (use a UTM builder to make this easier).  See below for an example.

Here you can see:

  • what the source of the campaign is: source=twitter
  • that it is a social media campaign: medium=social
  • and that you are focusing on tracking influencers: campaign=influencers
  • you can even specify which influencer you shared the link with: content=John%20Doe%20twitter

If you want to learn more about building UTM tracking into your campaigns check out this by Kissmetrics.

Good luck on your influencer marketing efforts!

Improve your personal brand on LinkedIn

Even the best marketing, PR, advertising and branding professionals neglect their own personal brand. But by ignoring themselves they are missing out on business opportunities, jobs and are building the wrong associations in others’ minds.

Take the bull by the horns and make a couple of quick changes to make sure that every interaction with you online is as impactful as possible.

Start by thinking about the five key messages or stories that you need to tell.

  • Who am I?
  • Why am I here?
  • My mission
  • What I do
  • What that means for you

Five key messages

Who am I?

This should be a short introduction to you. It is essential that it is easy to tell across multiple channels and be as relevant on the homepage of your website and LinkedIn page as it is being told by someone else in reference to you.

A good profile picture is essential. You are seven times more likely to receive a response to an InMail if you have one. In addition, it helps should you bump into someone at an event or meeting. The style of the picture should reflect how you wish to be perceived. A picture of you down the pub might be the picture you have to hand but that isn’t the lasting impression you want to leave (unless you are a publican of course).

Why am I here?

What is the purpose of this conversation or this content that you are making me read? What are you trying to achieve? Be up front about your objective.

My Mission.

Explain what you stand for. This needs to include your core values and your mission statement as well as what motivates you.

What I do.

Your mission should be more of your “why” and this is more “how” you do your job. Find your USP – your unique selling proposition and explain it to your audience.

Instead of just explaining what we are selling you could equally discuss the UBR – the unique buying reason; the reason that people buy instead of the reason we sell.

What that means for you.

Complete the circle and give case studies and testimonials of how you have helped or impacted others. It is essential that you have success stories that demonstrate how you have achieved your mission through what you do and how you do it.

Putting things into practice

Now take a look at your LinkedIn profile and see how these elements take shape.

Use your headline not to show your job title, but instead how you can help other people. This is your succinct Who I Am content.

Build out your Summary with your full Who I Am message and then explain Why Am I Here followed by My Mission.

Each section of your Experience should explain the My Mission of the company you work for or represent. Then you can go on to explain What I Do highlighting your USPs (or UBRs). If your role involves a process that you take people / businesses through it is wise to document that.

Use both the rich media components and Recommendations to show what you have done for others. This is your online portfolio that highlights What This Means For You should someone choose to do business with you.


Double check that your contact details are up to date and that it is easy to get in touch.

You can add up to three links on your profile – make sure you use them! At the very least link to your company website. A few other options include social media sites, specific areas on your website (such as testimonials or services), your blog or a portfolio.

To see an annotated guide check out the slides below.

3 Steps to Easy Content Marketing

Content: It is important but difficult to pull off. In fact according to research from Hubspot creating content and measuring the return on invest are two of the biggest challenges faced by marketers today.

Despite statistics demonstrating that posting and sharing content helps build your brand, drives engagement with your target audience and actually leads to more conversions (applications to jobs or clients getting in touch) the vast majority of recruitment businesses haven’t invested in content marketing training or hired content experts. This is huge lost opportunity.

Over the last 12 months my team and I have spent many hours educating our clients on how to make creating content simple. Here I’ll share a couple of tricks which will save you time and effort.

So what can you do today to save time, create more content and have an instant impact?

It starts with the way your structure your content. Since school we’ve heard about building stories with the right Beginning, Middle and Ending. When it comes to content creation and content marketing think of these three steps as chapters titled Problem, Solution and Resolution.

Chapter one. The Beginning – Problem:

Highlight a problem that your target audience of candidates or clients face. This could be a problem that they are very aware of (how do I prepare for an upcoming interview) or something that is news to them (did you know the job of a marketing director will become redundant because of “Growth Hackers”).

Conversations between recruiters and their candidates or clients should raise challenges that these individuals or businesses face. Build a process in your business where marketing and front line recruiters speak regularly to share what the hot topics of the day are.

When highlighting problems that your clients and candidates might not be aware of – such as changing market factors which could impact their career progression, or legislation changes which might mean hiring certain candidates becomes difficult – try to add statistics or data from third party sources to validate the issue.

Chapter two. The Middle – Solution:

Explore what your clients and candidates can do to solve these problems. In the earlier examples this might include a vide tutorial on how to act in an interview and some tips for the most common questions, or training courses and book recommendations for marketers looking to learn about “Growth Hacking”.

The more comprehensive your solution, the better you demonstrate how well you understand your business and the market. For years now recruitment consultancies have been talking about the “value added service” which they offer alongside their standard recruitment offering. Here is the opportunity to deliver on that promise.

Content with a framework or process which is easy to follow will often be more successful and increase the number of social shares you receive.

Chapter three. The End – Resolution:

Having highlighted a problem, explained how it can be fixed you now have an opportunity to share examples of people / businesses who have followed these recommendations to see success.
Showing real life examples instantly builds credibility. This is like a case study on what your business has done and therefore what you can do for other clients or candidates.

Going back to the earlier examples you might show how someone managed to get their dream job as a result of your interview advice, or how “Growth Hacking” has changed your client’s marketing department.

Well does it work?

Heck yes! In fact this process is used across case studies, self-help books, adverts and infomercials.

Take the recent advert on television from AO. They highlight a problem shared by many parents; children get dirty, and occasionally washing machines break down. Then they describe the solution which involved contacting AO. Finally the entire video is a resolution because it is narrated in the first person by the family involved.

In a recent session with clients in the LinkedIn office several recognised this formula from articles they had read or had written themselves unknowingly.

Content Marketing photo in office
Even this blog post takes the format of Problem, Solution, Resolution.
Problem: “Content: It is important but difficult to pull off.”
Solution: “It starts with the way your structure your content.”
Resolution: “Take the recent advert on television from AO.”

Please let me know if you try this formula and if you have success with it. Any feedback is welcome.


For more information check out this slide deck below…


Steal the Process – Not the Logo

“I like what they’ve done.  It really means something to me.  Why don’t we do the same thing?”  Yes!  Fantastic.  If you are inspired by something you should steal it.  Not the outcome, but the process.

“Imitation is the sincerest of flattery”
Charles Caleb, 1820

The outcome – the brand, the logo, the strapline, the website, the office layout, the business idea or whatever – might be incredible.  But it won’t work for you.  Or at least it won’t entirely work for you.

If something means something to you that probably means that the other party have thought long and hard about how to make it resonate.  The outcome wasn’t predetermined… but their process probably was.

Cops and RobbersIn recruitment; look at a business like Hays or Michael Page.  Each of these businesses has a clear message to market.  You know what to expect if you go to an interview or if you appoint them to fill one of your roles.  They are run by people with visions and direction.  You can’t set up a Pays or a Michael Hage tomorrow in a bid to do exactly what they do in exactly the same way.  It doesn’t work because you aren’t the same.  You don’t have the same people, history, culture, vision or direction.

The brand of a business is about the way it looks, but it also goes much further and deeper.  The brand affects the way you respond to a business, how people feel about an organisation and how employees act in their jobs.

Don’t spend your time copying other brands or businesses – but take the time to do what they have gone through.

The 5 Steps to Steal:
What do you want to achieve?  Who are you?  What is your big idea?  What is your purpose?  How are you different?  What are your values?

Create the message
How do you explain your purpose?  What is your vision?  How do you show that you are different?  How can your people live your culture?

Create the identity
How do you sound?  How do you look?  What is the experience you are delivering?

Build it
Create.  Design.  Write.  Paint.

Ship it
Get your message out to the world.  Make sure that whichever channel you use there is a clear and consistent message that outlines your purpose, your vision, and how you are different.

And guess what: if you are lucky enough to have people trying to copy your brand it means you are doing something right.  Imitation is flattery.  The truth is that they aren’t the same as you and be able to pull it off with authority.  People can smell a fake a mile off.

5 Steps to Making the Right Mistakes in Marketing… and How to Fix Them

The biggest fear you have in your company today is making a bad decision.  In the corporate world a bad decision can wipe millions off your share price, cost you your clients, get you fired, or maybe all of the above.  We are programmed to fear making mistakes.  When prehistoric man made a mistake it could have cost them their life.  Fear is natural.

The problem with fear is that it makes us want to play safe.  Playing safe in business means falling behind; it means that you aren’t innovating.  Playing safe in the corporate world can wipe millions off your share price, cost you your clients, get you fired, or maybe all of the above.  We are programmed to fear making mistakes.  But every now and then we need to put ourselves on the line and risk it.

“Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.”
George Bernard Shaw

Progress comes from trying new things.  If we don’t try new things we will never change, never improve and, as a business, never be more successful.  Making mistakes in marketing can be quick and, thankfully, due to the nature of digital marketing it can often be fixed.Innovation Adoption Lifecycle

Today we all talk about Big Data.  We have more information than ever before and whether you are a business professional making decisions about your company’s strategy or a consumer wondering what to buy you can use the endless reports, focus groups or spread sheets to help you.

But does this help?

Not every time.  You can only report on what has happened historically and make assumptions based on that environment and those sets of circumstances.  But what about today?  What about your client or customer base?  How will they react?  No matter how much data you have about historical events you can’t guarantee what will happen in the future.

Operational Decision Making IBM

Here is how you can make your mistakes… and learn from them fast.

1.  Have a hunch and research it.
Having an idea is the hardest part of this process.  Spend the majority of your time finding out what you want to achieve and what you can do to get there.  You will find that you have a hunch of what might work.  This idea may be unique and creative, logical and straightforward or stolen from someone else.  Whatever you think might work; write it down.  Then do your research.  Ask people what they think of your idea get them to pick holes in it, improve it and tweak it.  Have you got case studies where it has worked in the past?  Learn from these.

2.  Roll out your idea.
Even if the odds are stacked against you – if you are convinced that your idea will work – you should go with it.
Make it happen.  Be bold.  Don’t test this idea in such an isolated way that it is bound to fail, or could appear to fail because it won’t impact enough people to see measurable results.  You need to gamble here.  Go big enough to get the information you need to know how you can improve your idea or kill it.  If you can, start to A/B test – where you run two similar ideas in tandem and find out which is best.

3.  Set your deadlines and know when to cash-out.
Know when your “best” ideas need to be killed off.  This might be painful for you as you may have invested, time, effort and credibility in this effort.  It is better to know when to stop than to carry on regardless.

4.  Kaizen 改善.
Kaizen is Japanese for “improvement” or “change for the best”.  It refers to a philosophy or practice that focuses upon continuous improvement of processes in manufacturing, engineering, business management or any process.  At this point in your process you need to be refining what you have started out with.  Continue to optimise your marketing strategy based on the feedback and the data at your disposal.  If you are A/B testing then keep running with the most successful idea and create another test to see if you can further improve on what you have done.

5.  Go again.
Come up with a new idea.  Roll with it.  Test it out and continue to improve on it.  Don’t stop innovating.  You will die if you stop (metaphorically).  You will get fired if you stop (literally).  You will not be successful unless you try new things.


You can either make a decision based purely on data – or you can make a decision and improve it based on the data.

What would you you do: Follow the numbers or go with your gut?


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