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Social Media Recruiting Tips and Strategies

Social media recruiting (also called social recruiting) is the practice of using social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to share job postings, research talent and network with potential candidates.

Given the popularity and continued growth of social media, social media recruiting is one of the best ways to get the message out about a new opening, promote your company’s culture and put a friendly face to your organization.

In fact, according to a 2021 survey, 41% of workers said they use online social networks to find jobs.*Not only that, but many job seekers check out company social channels to learn more about the culture and work environment before deciding to apply for a job or accepting an interview invite.

In many ways, recruiters are brand ambassadors — and social media is yet another venue where they can promote a company to a large talent pool.

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What is social media recruiting?

Social media recruiting allows you to connect directly with people who are actively looking for job opportunities or find candidates who aren’t actively searching for a job, but may be interested in a new opportunity. You can also use social media sites to verify potential candidates’ professional and academic qualifications and experiences.

Benefits of using social media for recruitment

Using social media platforms to engage with potential job candidates has many advantages. Here are a few benefits of using social media for recruitment:

It supports a two-way conversation: Job seekers can quickly and easily get their questions answered in a comfortable, informal environment.

It allows you to share information with a large pool of potential candidates: Depending on the size of your network and the success of a post, you can reach thousands of job seekers at once. Current employees can also share posts to their own personal networks as a way to refer candidates.

It gives you a glimpse into a potential candidate’s personality: By engaging job seekers in more casual conversation, you can get a feel for their character and personality before you even set up a phone interview.

It helps foster a connection with your company’s brand: When followers engage with your recruiting profile or your company’s official account, they’ll quickly become more familiar with your organization, values and company culture.

It helps you meet candidates where they are: People spend a lot of time on social media. In fact, the average person will spend more than five years of their lives on social media.

19 social media recruiting tips

Here are tips to help you excel in your social media recruiting strategy:

1. Determine your business goals

Various social media platforms require different strategies to meet your specific goals. Use the SMART system and identify what your short-term objectives are with hiring. Understanding the types of candidates you’re looking for and how many you need can help you start your hiring process with a proper foundation.

2. Identify the appropriate platform

Next, choose the right social media platforms to help you achieve your recruiting goals. The platforms you choose depends on where the majority of your best candidates spend their time. For example, while you may think professional networking sites are the best options, graphic designers and similar roles may spend more of their time (and showcase their work) on visual platforms, like Instagram.

3. Enhance your recruiting and application processes

From connecting with candidates on social media to sending them through your application procedure, the full application process should be easy for candidates. If needed, consider redesigning your application process so that there are fewer steps between reaching out to candidates and their application submission.

4. Set up separate accounts for recruiting efforts

Personal social media accounts often contain beliefs, opinions and other information that may not be relevant to a job seeker searching for more information about what it’s like to work at your company. Consider creating separate, public accounts for your recruiting efforts. For example, if you have a personal Twitter account, create a business Twitter accountto recruit candidates. Keep these accounts entirely focused on your organization, including its people, culture, benefits and other information relevant to job seekers.

5. Match your online tone to your brand

When posting as a recruiter or through a brand recruiting account, align your space on the internet with your company in every way you can. Consider what makes your company unique and bring those concepts to your social media pages. Ensure that when candidates or consumers see your social media page, they immediately identify it with the overall brand.

6. Link posts back to your company’s official account

When you share a job posting on social media, interested followers will likely want to research the company — especially if they’re hearing of your organization for the first time. By linking back to or tagging your company’s official social media account in every post, you’ll help job seekers learn more about your business and grow your organization’s social media following which, in turn, will fuel your recruiting efforts.

7. Share photos of your office and events

When someone is considering applying for a role with a company, they usually want to gather as much information as possible about your culture to make sure it’s a place they’d fit in. Sharing photos of happy hours, team outings, conferences or just daily office life will help potential applicants determine whether they’d mesh with your culture.

Providing a visual representation of the experiences of current employees will help job seekers envision themselves in the role, create excitement and help applicants develop a greater connection with the company.

8. Make use of hashtags

When you use a hashtag on a post, anyone who searches the hashtag on the social media network could discover your post. By adding relevant hashtags to posts, you help interested job seekers find your content. For example, if you’re sharing a link to a job posting for a software engineer position in Chicago, you might include hashtags like #softwareengineer, #engineeringjobs, #chicagotechjobs or #techjobs.

9. Publish regularly

Make a habit of posting multiple times per week. By keeping up a healthy cadence, you show potential job seekers you’re active and ready to engage them in conversation should they have any questions. The more often you post, the more opportunities you have to connect with interested candidates.

What should you post? Try posting blog articles on relevant topics, videos, photos of your office, infographics, interviews with employees at your company, job openings, information about your core values and mission and any cool benefits and perks you offer. Think about what a candidate would want to know about your company and create content around that.

10. Use personality

It’s no secret people respond best to social media posts that are entertaining. Be personable, be friendly, be approachable and — if it fits your brand’s identity — be funny. When your social media recruiting efforts are human, job seekers will be more likely to connect with you.

11. Ask followers and current employees to share

The more shareable a social media post, the better it often performs. When posting a link to a new job posting, remind followers and your current employees that they’re more than welcome to share with a friend or family member. Even if someone isn’t interested in an open position, there’s a good chance there’s someone in their network who might be a good fit.

12. Get other employees to participate in social sharing

Job seekers are interested in posts published from an official company account, but posts from employees often provide a more honest, relatable peek into what life looks like within your organization. Users often trust other users’ opinions more than an actual brand, making them a powerful tool.

Encourage employees to share photos at events or around the office, and ask them to tag the official company account. Try re-sharing this content from your recruiting account to provide even more insight into company culture. Additionally, ask employees to share links to job postings if they feel there are viable candidates in their networks.

Consider creating a corporate social media policy that will guide employees’ communication with your audience on social media. This will keep your messaging consistent and prevent reputation-damaging accidents.

13. Check messages frequently and respond quickly

When you invite communication via social media, it’s crucial you stay on top of incoming messages. Make it a habit to check messages on each of your social accounts at least once per day. If you receive a message, be sure to respond quickly. As a recruiting professional, you know how important it is to engage potential candidates at just the right moment during their job-seeking process. If you wait too long to get back in touch, they may accept an offer elsewhere.

14. Moderate your social media accounts

You want to generate altogether positive conversations on your social media accounts. You can encourage positive language and behaviors through account moderation. There are a few easy ways to moderate, like publishing guidelines for commenters, hiring a community manager to monitor conversations, encouraging staff to participate and giving friendly feedback to commenters rather than deleting posts. Building an active, positive space takes time and effort, but it’s definitely worth it.

15. Monitor social media account metrics

Measuring and analyzing social media account metrics will help you improve your reach. That way, you can connect with as many potential candidates as possible. Consider measuring volume (size of the conversation), reach (spread of the conversation), engagement (how people are participating in the conversation), influence (which people are participating in the conversation) and share of voice (how does the conversation about your company compare to others?).

16. Focus efforts on relevant niche social media networks

In the social media recruitment world, niche networks like Stack Overflow, Dribbble, GitHub and Meetup can sometimes produce even more, (and even better) candidates than the three or four biggest networks can. Some smaller networks can help you reach specific groups of people, like women or those with an interest in technology. Others are built for job seekers, veterans or other groups. Spread out your social media engagement and you could see a major impact on your recruiting efforts.

17. Engage with interested users in a personalized and human way

Users can tell when they’re interacting with a real, caring, honest human and when they’re receiving replies from a bot. You want the face of your company to be as human as possible. This will encourage more people to connect with your social media networks and will build trust in your company.

Try commenting on peoples’ social media posts to spark conversations and encourage engagement.

18. Create mobile-friendly content

Many users view and engage with social media on their mobile devices, so your websites and your content should be optimized for mobile performance. Some sites, for example, provide sizing options for different devices — but your images should be cropped appropriately. Your website and application, however, often require more work. If you’re unable to optimize your website on your own, try hiring a web designer or contacting a digital media agency for help.

19. Share intriguing content — not just job postings

If you only post job ads on your social media accounts, your audience might lose interest and stop following. It is important to engage your followers consistently with valuable content that improves your brand reputation. Keep it fun and engaging, and they will likely come back again and again.

Ideas include hosting live Q&As, live streaming company events, posting behind-the-scenes content and creating webinars on topics that are relevant to your audience.

Social media recruiting is a more modern and convenient method of networking that can help you connect with potential candidates you may have never reached through a more traditional approach. By using these social media recruiting tips, you can build authentic relationships with qualified professionals all across the globe.

*Source: Indeed survey, n=500

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Social media recruiting FAQs

Do you need an online presence to conduct social hiring?

Consider social hiring from the candidate’s perspective. When you reach out to them, they’ll want to research your business. If you have an outdated profile with few posts, they won’t be as confident to continue engaging, so keep your posts up to date and relevant.

Can you interview candidates through social media?

As more businesses switch to remote offices (especially during COVID-19), more interviews occur through video chats. Some social media platforms have video chatting options, however, they’re not as popular or as secure as dedicated video chatting applications. However, many businesses use social media to schedule their interviews with candidates. Some social media platforms have calendars that remind candidates of appointments, making the process easier and more manageable directly from the platform.

What role can social network sites play in recruitment?

Social network platforms can provide several benefits for the recruitment process. They can increase job visibility, reduce the cost of hiring candidates, decrease the time it takes to screen candidates and allow recruiters to engage directly with a vast pool of potential candidates.

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*Indeed provides this information as a courtesy to users of this site. Please note that we are not your recruiting or legal advisor, we are not responsible for the content of your job descriptions, and none of the information provided herein guarantees performance.

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