Your association is an essential source of information, tools, and resources for your industry. Your online career center can be one of the top resources for your members and the employers looking to hire them. It can help drive member engagement, generate revenue, and be a source of pride for your organization.
As an effective association marketing channel, social media can help you market, grow, and reach the full potential for your career center.
Here’s how: A key approach to running a successful online career center is to drive passive job seekers to your online job board. Passive job seekers are members and potential members who are currently employed and may look only at job opportunities that are presented to them (versus members and job seekers who are actively looking for a new job). Your passive job-seeking members are often valued as potential candidates by employers and recruiters, as they can be highly qualified, yet difficult to reach in any other way than through your association.
Learn more about the power of an online job board for your association.
Read the guide, "Top Questions About Association Job Boards… Answered!"
Using social media to engage your members and potential members with job postings has become increasingly popular through networks like LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter, which make it much easier to reach passive job seekers.
Here are 13 tips for using social media to market and grow your association’s career center:
1. Create a plan.
As with any marketing channel, building a plan and having a schedule can help ensure social media platforms are consistently being used. Reach your audience when they are most likely online by using an online scheduling tool, like Buffer, Hootsuite, or TweetDeck.
2. Set S.M.A.R.T. goals.
Your social media strategy should start with your goals. First, identify your marketing goals for promoting your career center and how you want to communicate about it. Define short-term and long-term goals that will increase your online presence, increase member engagement, and appeal to prospective members. Having these goals defined will help you reach members and potential members on the right channel, with the right message.
Next, make a list of goals that are SMART: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Trackable. An example of a SMART goal: Post on our social media channel twice per week with messaging and links that drive five new member leads to our career center within the next three months.
3. Put hashtags to work.
Create a hashtag for your association’s career center and use it in every relevant post. Hashtags perform best on Twitter, LinkedIn, and TikTok. Also include more general hashtags, such as #job or #industryjob, to get your post in front of more people.
4. Choose your platform(s).
With many social media platforms available, it can be easy to get overwhelmed. Just keep in mind that each channel is different. Consider each social media platform in your marketing mix before posting, and decide what channels would be best for your digital strategy.
Then start working through each platform in steps. Master one and consistently use it, then add another one. For example, if most of your audience is using Facebook, create a plan and schedule for that platform first. Then add LinkedIn or Twitter to your mix.
5. On LinkedIn, turn off the Jobs tab.
Do not bypass your association career center by pushing job seekers to LinkedIn, which trains your job seekers to go to LinkedIn for job searches. Instead, link to your career center from your LinkedIn page. This will push people from LinkedIn to your specialized career center.
6. Optimize content across your social media platforms.
People often enjoy seeing visuals, such as beautiful images, infographics, videos, and more. Make your Instagram posts very visual, keep images informal on Facebook, and use images that portray your expertise on LinkedIn.
Also, be thoughtful about the tone of your messages for each platform, and engage your readers to interact with your message by linking to your career center, or if hosting a career event, linking to the registration page.
7. Set up automatic social feeds.
Set up an RSS feed for new job postings to automatically integrate your career center with Facebook and Twitter. Promote new jobs at a set interval or distribute only featured jobs.
8. Get your messaging out there.
Post a career center promotional message geared toward employers one day per week. Do the same for job seekers on another day of the week. Ask for reposting of your job and promotional posts. When people do it, reach out with a personal thank you.
Also, post at least once per week with a link to your career center. Remember to include career center data, such as the number of job opportunities you currently list, number of résumés, number of registered job seekers, and/or number of employers registered. Use this channel to promote your career events as well.
9. Offer discount codes.
Send out a coupon code for a discount off a job posting once per quarter on your Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn accounts. Discount codes are great to use during holiday periods as well.
10. Share career center emails on social media.
Link to the web version of your career center promotional emails with a social status update or group message. For example, “Get your job into the inboxes of 5,000 pharmacists” can be a great message for employers. Or provide the number of new jobs recently posted to encourage members and registered job seekers to visit the career center.
11. Check out the competition.
Look at other associations to see how they’re posting on social media. Outline how they are engaging and communicating with their members and use that as a reference. For example, we’ve created branded social media images for several of our association clients to help them promote features of their career center on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. The messaging included features their career centers offer, such as uploading résumés, receiving a free résumé review, and expanding professional networks.
12. Prove your value.
Show that your career center provides member value through social media. For example, create a post that offers a solution to a member problem, such as optimizing their résumés through a résumé review. Or post a link that allows users to sign up for job alerts through your career center to minimize their time needed to look for jobs. Have a virtual happy hour or career fair event coming up? Be sure to post that on your social media channels as well to engage members.
13. Use social media advertising.
Develop your career center brand among the people who use Facebook through Facebook advertising. And that is just one of many social media platforms you can advertise on – LinkedIn, Twitter, and TikTok are other examples. Set the budget, target your audience, and present a call to action. Then measure the results.
Take the next step with your association’s online career center.
These are just some of the effective ways to market and grow your association’s online career center.