The Marketing Society has just published its new "Manifesto for Marketing". One of the challenges it identifies is for marketers to collaborate more with peers in other parts of the organisation.
Design is one aspect of the mix that a marketing professional must value, understand and give due prominence to in the toolbox of brand-building.
The "Manifesto for Marketing" goes further, however, emphasising the desirability of taking a company-wide view, and engaging with other business functions. It states: "Marketing can bring to life for colleagues what’s going on in the marketplace, with customers, competitors and alternatives now and in the future, and this is useful in helping the whole team succeed."
Denholm Associates, along with The Marketing Society in Scotland, has just launched an initiative to help companies improve their talent-attraction strategies by incorporating the brand experience into the recruitment process.
My experience, combining marketing with recruitment, tells me that companies often put customers at the heart of what they do and communicate very well with them. But when it comes to giving the same warm feelings about the company to prospective candidates, professional marketing principles get lost.
Poor perceptions can start during the interview process, with delays and lack of feedback, but even when companies have an excellent record in interviewing, training and development, they don’t communicate this to candidates, and forget that those who need wooing are often the most valuable.
In a competitive talent market (set to get more challenging as the economy recovers), companies need to sharpen up their talent-attraction strategies.
In a competitive talent market (set to get more challenging as the economy recovers), companies need to sharpen up their talent-attraction strategies. In the old days, pre-digital, recruitment advertising took care of this – a double-page spread in the Telegraph recruitment section provided the opportunity to advertise the specific vacancy but also, importantly, a platform to sell the company.
The move to digital saved money, and job boards like Monster thrived as newspapers declined. But this reduced the opportunity to promote the company as an attractive employer. Then along came the recession. Companies thought they were in a buyers’ market for talent, and the whole issue of talent attraction was pushed further down the agenda (unless you were a rapidly growing global player like Google and Apple).
Now companies are waking up to the danger, and, ironically, digital marketing can give companies an edge in the battle for talent. Incorporating marketing techniques into the recruitment process is key to this.
However for a co-ordinated talent-attraction strategy, marketers need to collaborate more closely than ever with their colleagues in HR. This benefits the organisation, and marketers gain a more holistic work experience, useful for their own CVs.
So my advice to senior marketers is to find ways to collaborate on talent-attraction with HR. It could enhance your own career while making your company a beacon for new talent hoping to enhance their own.