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How many times have you seen an online article headline or title that you clicked on, only to find out it was not what you expected? It happens every day on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn—and it's incredibly frustrating.

What if it was your content causing prospective candidates to feel this way? What damage would you be doing to your employer brand? The answer is a lot.

Of course, this is not something you necessarily do deliberately—you probably think you're publishing great content. But it is really important to make sure that any content you are going to share—either content created by your company, or content that you have curated and shared on sites like Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn—meets three essential criteria:

  1. It is relevant to the audience you are sharing it with.
  2. It is interesting to the individuals.
  3. It is appealing and will make people want to read and open it.

The first stage here is of course to make sure you understand what audience you have on each platform you are using. For example, you will likely have a different mix of people making up your subscribers on a company blog, your followers on Twitter and your fans on Facebook. The content that is relevant to one audience may not be relevant to the others.

Here are three ways to ensure you maintain a focused and engaging recruitment marketing strategy:

Know Your Audience

Write content—articles, whitepapers and eBooks—for a target audience. Don't be generic. Instead, keep it focused and think about the topics your readers are interested in learning about. For instance, I wouldn't just write about content strategy for this post—I know my audience is interested in talent, recruiting and HR topics, so I wrote about content specifically for shaping your employer brand to candidates.

Pay Attention to Format

Different audiences typically expect different presentations of content. Consider the dynamics of the platform to determine your content style and format. For example, your Twitter followers are likely in the “passive" candidate group and breezing through their feed. Use succinct headlines and interesting images to resonate with followers and capture their attention. On LinkedIn, your followers are likely more in job-hunting state of minds. They are looking for longer-form content and more information about your company, so videos and published posts work well.

Keep It Organized

You may have several people working on your recruiting team creating content. When you are curating content to share across your social platforms, use a content aggregation tool like Feedly.com to create segmented folders with subjects specific to each of your target audiences—whether that's based on platform (Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook), department (sales, marketing, IT) or career stage (entry-level, manager, C-suite). This makes it easier to keep your team in sync and keep your shared content relevant.

By using these guidelines as the pillars of your recruitment content strategy, you'll stand out to candidates. You'll gain a reputation as a trusted source of unique and interesting information specific to your potential employees, and will gain better engagement with your community of followers as a result.

Photo: Creative Commons