As we all know, social media channels are fast becoming the most effective tools in job search. According to a recent survey, 89% of companies will use social media networks for recruiting in 2011. If that’s not a reason to shine up your online presence and get busy, I don’t know what is!
But wait, there’s more! How about these stats from the same survey; 92% of hiring managers used or plan to recruit through social media channels and here are the channels they used; Linkedin 86%, Facebook 60% and Twitter 50%. If you still aren’t rushing to your computer to update your social profiles than I’m sorry but I can’t help you.
It was these stats that made me wonder, if the whole world is shifting their job search strategies to social networks, what are the biggest job boards doing about it? More specifically, which of the major job sites is most effective at managing their brand and engaging their community, fans, followers and connections.
For the purpose of this post I decided to compare two of the biggest job sites, Monster and CareerBuilder, on Facebook to see which company is doing the better job of rallying the troops on their branded social channel. First we’ll take a quick look at each of their fan pages and then we’ll see how they match up regarding engagement, the holy grail of social media.
Monster Facebook Fan Page
Monsters Facebook fan page is marginal at best. They greet you with their wall, which says right away that Monster does not have a social media team and if they do, they seriously need some training. I’ve seen countless bootstrapped small businesses with a better Facebook landing page than this.
Clearly, from their left sidebar menu choices, nobody’s told Monster that people on Facebook like to stay on Facebook. Personally, I’ve seen very few intelligent brands link off their Fan page to their Twitter or YouTube account. Who knows, maybe Monster is on to something
There is absolutely nothing on this page that jumps out and engages the visitor when they arrive. And the few things they do have to offer are cleverly hidden among the other invisible links on the side bar. You would think that if a company launched something as potentially cool as BeKnown, a professional networking app on Facebook, they would want to call attention to it in a big way. It’s a worthy competitive advantage in the crowded field of Job boards so why hide it?
The other kind of cool thing they have is a video wall, which is a great idea because we all know that people on the web love to watch videos. Frankly, their video wall would make a way better landing page than their wall, come on, really!
I think I’ve said enough abut Monster for now but as you can guess, I’m underwhelmed at best. Now let’s take a look at CareerBuilder.
CareerBuilder Facebook Fan Page
The first thing I notice when I hit the CareerBuilder Facebook landing page is a nice big grid of job categories and an arrow pointing to them that says, “start searching”. That makes sense, they’re a job board and they greet me on their Facebook fan page with a way to find a job. While CareerBuilder had the right idea here, they failed on their execution.
When I click on the sales category, expecting to see sales jobs, I’m taken to their CareerBuilder Sales Jobs fan page and where do you think they land me? On the Sales Jobs fan page wall which doesn’t list any sales jobs. Can you say bounce rate!
What’s worse is that, like their friend the Monster, the one thing of value they do have on this fan pages is also cleverly hidden on the left side bar. That would be the link to “featured jobs”. If CareerBuilder’s social media team would have been thinking, they would have made the “featured jobs” page the landing page, especially after what I clicked on to get here.
When I click on the other categories of jobs, things get even worse, as I landed on one job category fan page after the next, I was greeted with the same jobs category grid that I saw when I first hit the main CareerBuilder fan page. So I click on a link from a page that says “job categories” and “start searching” and I land on a page that looks exactly like the page I just left. Is it just me or is this a stupid idea?
We won’t even get into the fact that there are apps out there that would allow CareerBuilder to feed a portion of the jobs on their site into the corresponding Facebook category fan page. This would allow job seekers to get a good taste of what’s available and still be on Facebook, their safety place. And, after they start to see all the promising jobs , they will want to visit CareerBuilder because they know there are even more jobs there.
That’s about all I have to say about CareerBuilder.
Before we move on and see who is doing a better job of engaging their fans on Facebook, you should know that for the purpose of this post, I entered both companies Fan pages from a Facebook link on their websites. Also, I was already logged into my Facebook account. (Who isn’t!) Now let’s get to the good stuff, who will win our social media smack down by engaging their fans?
In this next section I used a super cool social media analytics tool called Simply Measured. I highly recommend it to any brand and social media team that wants to know how they rate in social engagement, especially compared to their competition. Their reports are packed with solid information and measurements but in the interest of your time, I’m only going to call out a few. Also I should point out that the numbers below are for a 14 day period from August 15th through August 29th.
Clearly by this measure alone, CareerBuilder is crushing the Monster but any social media pro knows that fan count in and of itself is no real measure of success. It’s easy for people to hit the “like” button one day and never interact with the brand on Facebook again. With that in mind we need to dig a little deeper. A good community manager (I believe this will be one of the fastest growing career opportunities in the coming years) wants to know how many of their fans are engaged with their brand.
This measurement shows us the number of fan interactions which include posts, comments and “likes” on Facebook and the Simply Measured chart shows us both the total number of engagements and engagements as % of fans.
These results are interesting because by the number of total engagements it appears again that CareerBuilder is crushing Monster. But on a closer look we see that both companies are seeing about 1% of their fans engaging with their brand. From the % of fans point of view, they are dead even. Don’t get me wrong, I would much rather have 973 fans versus 171 fans actual interacting with my social channel. Clearly, while the Career Builder team is far more effective at attracting fans, it looks like they are only equal to the Monster team at generating engagement.
As we all know, a big part of a successful media strategy is content. Without relevant, timely, clever content most brands will see their fan base slowly expire. It’s easy to attract fans with a great coupon, white paper or other offer but it’s another thing all together to keep them around. The final chart we will use for comparison will help us gauge the quality of the content.
Responses per post
Here we will look at how many “likes” and comments each post on the company’s fan page generates. It stands to reason that better, more fan centered posts will generate more responses and help grow and sustain the community. (The job of the Community manager)
During the two week period we used for our sample, CareerBuilder clearly enjoyed a higher fan response rate. They also dropped 51 posts during the period compared to Monsters 15 post. The higher number of fan responses could be a product of better, more engaging content or the higher frequency of posts or a combination of both. What ever the case, the CareerBuilder social media team was more present and engaging than their friends at Monster.
The winner of this week’s Social Media Smack down is… CareerBuilder!
Which ever Job site you decide to use, be sure to pay attention to your social profiles and how you interact with recruiters, hiring managers, friends, connections and followers. As you can see from the example above, more engagement and interaction equals more fans and when we’re looking for a job, who doesn’t need more fans!
Ken Horst works for a Twin Cities based search marketing agency managing the SEO, social media and content marketing campaigns for clients all over the U.S. You can connect with Ken on Twitter, LinkedIn or Google+. If you’re interested in how brands succeed and fail at social media engagement, follow @EngageorFail on Twitter, blog coming soon.