3 min read

Marketing automation: what recruiters need to know for demand generation in 2023

Marketing automation: what recruiters need to know for demand generation in 2023

Depending on where a potential candidate or client is at in their buyer journey - i.e. how close they are to becoming an active candidate or client - will impact what you may or may not already know about marketing automation.

Many recruiters or recruitment leaders have heard of the term “marketing automation”, but aren’t really sure on the specifics of what it means, or what it can do for their business.

There’s only so much you can do with phone calls, LinkedIn InMails and job board advertising. We aren’t saying it doesn’t work - but over time, these tactics will become less effective given that now, every 21 seconds someone finds a permanent role through a recruitment agency in the UK. 

That’s a lot of recruitment agencies. And businesses using recruitment agencies.
And candidates. 


How do I stand out from the competition?

With so much competition in the recruitment space, your business needs to be investing in marketing to stay front of mind. By investing in marketing, we mean:

  • Ensuring your brand is known and consistent, both on social media and on your website

  • Ensuring your website is - at a bare minimum - fit for purpose, clearly signposted and easy to use for candidates and clients

  • Consistently posting useful content that will answer questions your target audiences will have, addressing their pain points and providing solutions

  • Engaging with your audiences on social media channels, particularly LinkedIn

  • Nurturing candidates and clients via automated email marketing with the relevant content and CTAs

If all you do is post to LinkedIn twice a week, the reality will be that your competitors will have provided high-value, informative content via social media and email, as well as engaging with your target audiences directly, meaning they will be front of mind. 

So, even if they aren’t ready to “buy” yet, when they are - you won’t be who they think of. 

The whole purpose of nurturing candidates and clients through marketing automation is to give you the best chance possible at being the first recruitment company that springs to mind when someone in your audience is ready to find a new job, or recruit new talent.

However - if you are investing in marketing automation, you need to ensure you don’t simply buy an automation platform and expect results. Somebody needs to run it, and by run it, we mean manage it on a daily basis.


How do I know when someone will be “buyer ready”?

The current recruitment market suggests everyone is “buyer ready”, meaning that they have an immediate or pending job that they need to be proactively trying to fill.

The “buyer ready” mindset will shift the focus from trying to find and engage potential customers to “buy now” (i.e., apply for a job or enquire about recruitment), to finding potential customers and enriching their day with valuable content to position your business in the front of their minds when they are... ready.

If someone needs to fill a role immediately, they'll turn to trusted sources first. Building trust takes time, and this is the paradox of trying to force marketing to yield immediate results:

  • Find prospect

  • Create average content

  • Send content by email

  • Run-off list of people who clicked through to view the content

  • Pass to sales to conduct a "warm call"

What's wrong with this picture? It's not a "warm call" at all. It's tepid at best.

Another version of this process is:

  • Create pdf download/ebook/guide/whitepaper

  • Promote pdf download via paid ads

  • Capture form completions

  • Pass to sales to conduct a "warm call"

Again, it's hardly a warm lead. They simply wanted to view the content you’ve produced. That doesn’t mean they immediately want to work with you… or receive a phone call from you, for that matter.

The above processes will generate "leads" - a simple list of contacts for sales to contact. Most of them will be poor quality, and very few will be ready to buy.

Instead, with the help of marketing automation, you can:

  • Create high-value, informative and compelling content

  • Promote it wherever your audience is online

  • Give it away freely (if it's good, it will add value)

  • Repeat and trust the process

  • Be patient…


Capture and record all buyer ready enquiries

This takes longer, is less practical to measure (but not impossible), and will reduce the amount of 'leads'. It will, however, generate more accurate leads via actual enquiries that are a lot more likely to convert.

This is not to say that every sale will come from generating demand alone. You still need an alignment of the sales team with marketing to help nurture demand. So, communicating with sales about potential buyers in your demand generation processes can enable the sales team to add even more value.

For example:

  • Share with the sales team the contacts that are engaging with your content, and allow the sales team to also send some value-add content (an invitation to a webinar or a request for a contribution to the next piece of content in their field) 

  • Alternatively, they could engage with the contact on social media by commenting on posts by the contact

  • This might yield more immediacy and nudge the contact to becoming 'buyer ready' sooner than marketing working alone to generate demand


Demand generation in 2023 - where do I begin?

First, you need to understand what the process completely involves, what it all means, and you need to explicitly understand how it can bring value. Second, you need to ensure someone is on hand to run your marketing automation efforts - either someone on your inhouse marketing team, or a specialist recruitment marketing agency.

If you want to do a bit more research, go ahead - it’s best to know as much as you can before you invest, we get that. However, don’t wait too long before you take the plunge - the vast majority of Marmalade Marketing’s recruitment clients have been investing in marketing automation for sometime now, and yielding some fantastic results.

Get in touch to find out more. 

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