The hits just keep on coming.
Facebook means more than sharing photos and whining about the election. It means business. In the past few months, the most popular social network on the planet at almost 2 billion people strong has introduced Facebook at Work and job postings on Pages.
It’s also getting serious about how it makes money through messaging, which has been historically elusive for apps.
We already know that candidates who apply to job openings via Fan Pages in the future will engage with an employer via Messages. And now we know there’s another way for employers to target prospects and engage with them on Facebook with newly introduced Sponsored Messages.
How Employers Can Leverage Sponsored Messages
There are two ways recruiters can leverage Messages to hire more effectively with Facebook. Let’s take a look.
- Communication integrated into advertising. You already know what an ad on Facebook looks and acts like. Similar to just about every other online ad you’ve ever seen, there’s usually text, and image and a hotlink. The hotlink typically takes users to another website.Facebook’s new solution allows a user to directly message the advertiser, remaining in Facebook. So, imagine a button within an ad that says, “Message” or “Contact.” From there, a window pops up that leverages chatbot technology that’s been available for some time now. Candidates will be conversing with a robot that emulates a human. Similarly to how Olivia works, the chatbot can take a candidate through an application process by asking questions like What’s your name? Do you have a driver’s license? Ideally, developers will be able to dump data into a bucket that’s manageable outside of Facebook.
- Direct marketing. Employers will be able to send unsolicited messages to users who have previously participated in threads with that brand. Facebook users are comfortable messaging with friends, but not so much with brands and advertisers. Well, get ready for more Messenger traffic from advertisers. Who advertisers will be able to message is a bit gray at this point, but I’m guessing anyone who Likes a company, comments on Page posts or clicks on a company advertisement could be fair game. It’s also unclear how these messages will be sent, but similar to how messages are sent through services like Mailchimp or Aweber seem logical.
It’s important to note that users can block advertisers for any reason, so it’ll pay to be prudent with recruitment marketing. A smart strategy might be to send a message to any prospect that may have clicked an ad promoting a job fair with a reminder message highlighting the event the day before.
Sponsored messages isn’t a product specifically built for the workplace, but it can undoubtedly be utilized to do so. Messaging is the most popular activity on a mobile phone, and it’s only getting bigger. And don’t forget Facebook owns Instagram and WhatsApp, both of which lend themselves to moving the needle on monetizing messaging.
If you haven’t boarded the messaging bandwagon in your personal life, it’s time to jump on. Because all signs are pointing to it having an impact on the success of your professional life.
About the Author
Joel Cheesman has over 20 years experience in the online recruitment space. He worked for both international and local job boards in the late ‘90s and early ‘00s. In 2005, Cheesman founded HRSEO, a search engine marketing company for HR, as well as launching an award-winning industry blog called Cheezhead.
He has been featured in Fast Company and US News and World Report. He sold his company in 2009 to Jobing.com. He was employed by EmployeeScreenIQ, a background check company. He is the founder of Ratedly, an iOS app that monitors anonymous employee reviews. He is the father of two children and lives in Indianapolis. Yes, he’s on Twitter and LinkedIn. You can hire him too.
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