You may find this hard to believe, considering the average job seeker didn’t have immediate access to the standard computer until the late 1980s, but email was invented as a means to share information more than 50 years ago. Remarkably, your subscribers can now check your job posting email in an instant from a device that fits in the palm of their hand (or smaller!).
As a staffing professional, you use various forms of communication to reach job seekers and inform them about open jobs you’re trying to fill. Email has the potential to be one of the most effective ways to increase your talent pool, but when you’re not getting the response you think your carefully crafted newsletters deserve, it can be frustrating — and maybe even a little perplexing.
If you’re looking to grow your subscriber base, create brand advocates, and attract top talent to your clients’ jobs, you need to up your job posting email strategy. Here’s why your emails aren’t good enough and how to get them up to job seekers’ standards:
Tracking campaign success
One of the biggest mistakes many pros make when initiating a job posting email campaign is not working a strategy to track their success into the process. This is akin to practicing for a match and expecting to win when there’s no method to keep score, or preparing a meal for critics who cannot eat your food. In other words, if you’re not tracking these metrics, you may as well be sending your emails into a void:
Your open rate is the percentage of people who open a specific email you send out to your total number of subscribers. You want to track your open rates so you can compare your campaign strategies over time.
Your open rates can often reflect poorly if you’re not keeping your email list fresh. You may be sending out emails to old college accounts or business accounts subscribers are no longer using. You could also be hurting your open rates by not properly segmenting your lists. For example, you want to avoid sending emails out to your full list of subscribers rather than in batches with job posts and tips that are relevant to recipients.
There’s a good chance your job posting emails are getting caught up in spam filters. To avoid having your expertly crafted content heading straight for the spam folder, be sure you’re sending through a verified domain and you’re not sending from a blacklisted IP address (an IP address that was previously used to send SPAM mail). There are several convenient services and tools available to check your IP address online.
Your click rate or click-through rate is the percentage of people who follow a specific link in your email and visit the website or landing page you direct them to. This can be in the form of an obvious link such as a ‘click here’ button or a hyperlink found within your email signature, etc.
Not segmenting your subscriber list can affect your click rates as well. You may get recipients to open the email but if the content isn’t useful, they are going to exit out quickly or worse, unsubscribe. Make sure you’re sending targeted content to the right people.
You also want to make sure your objective is clear. Create a sense of urgency but don’t be clickbaity. You want to be able to prove your value and lead job seekers through the funnel by crafting effective calls to action.
And be sure your links deliver on your promise! Don’t lead users off on a wild goose chase to achieve higher click rates beyond your email campaign. You need to develop a sense of trust with your subscribers to maintain your positive click rates.
Your campaign response rate is based on the number of people who complete whatever task you’ve promoted or assigned. This could be in the form of a survey, a webinar sign-up, or even those who responded to your email.
Improving your response rate depends on the type of response you’re looking to achieve. If you’re sending out surveys, for example, you may want to trial your survey format with A/B testing to determine what types of questions subscribers are willing to answer. Keep surveys short and again, relevant. Segment, segment, segment!
If you’re hoping for more applicants or subscribers for your webinar or podcast, you really want to be personal with subscribers. You’re more likely to get a response when recipients feel you know them and are invested in their best interests. Make your intentions known upfront and be conversational so subscribers trust you’re being real with them.
Improving email outcomes
What do you have to offer?
Dropping job leads gets spammy after a while, and passive candidates are more likely to ignore your messages. They may even block them; after all, they’re busy at work! But if you have something to offer everyone to better themselves and their career, you’re more likely to slide into their inbox without drawing negative attention.
Tips, industry stats, salary data, breaking news…the hook when showing your subscribers what you have to offer is your subject line. You only get one chance to get that right so take extra time writing your subject.
A few example templates of subject lines that are more likely to boost your open rate include:
- – X ways to help you [solve this problem]
- – [Name], here’s a better way to [complete this task]!
- – [3 out of 5] people were able to [accomplishment] by [trend]
- – Can you spare a few minutes to weigh in on [important issue]
Don’t offer anything in your subject lines you can’t deliver and be sure you don’t come across as a sales pitch if you want to avoid spam filters. You should also avoid filler words and excessive capitalization or punctuation. Just keep it concise and professional.
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How does your email look on mobile?
The majority of subscribers are skimming through emails and looking for jobs to apply to from their mobile devices. In fact, at least 81% of all emails are opened and read on mobile devices according to Campaign Monitor’s Email Trends Report. If your emails are not easily digestible and images don’t load correctly on mobile, your open and click rates will suffer.
A good rule of thumb is to keep images no bigger than 600px to 650px. The most common mobile image resolution used is 320px by 640px. If you’re resizing images for your emails, be sure you are maintaining the aspect ratio of your original or the images will be distorted. Similarly, don’t size up much smaller images or your visuals will be pixelated.
If you’re sending your job posting emails out through a campaign scheduling tool, like MailChimp, be sure to preview the email on different mobile devices. You also want to make sure you’re linking to mobile-friendly job posts, landing pages, and surveys.
When are you sending your emails?
There used to practically be a science to determining the best day of the week to send out emails. You can bet subscribers knew what days of the week to brace for their inboxes to flood. And they likely dedicated an hour or more a day to send emails just like yours to their trash bin unopened because nobody has time for that.
The good news is new email marketing data reported by GetResponse reveals the day of the week doesn’t matter anymore. You can finally tailor your email campaign schedule to whatever is most convenient for you and your subscribers. However, they did determine early in the morning is best for both open and click-through rates, as early as 3-4 AM to be exact. You may want to use an email scheduling plugin like Boomerang for Gmail to catch the early birds.
Fortunately, the average engagement rate doesn’t appear to drop off during the day and aligns with typical business hours. This means if you are tracking your job posting email engagement, you’re safe to schedule for times of day your subscribers are most responsive. The key is in your metrics!
Recommended Reading: 3 Ways to Optimize Candidate Approved Recruiter Communication
How often are you sending newsletters and job posts?
In your haste to garner higher engagement rates, you may be tempted to send out more frequent emails to your subscribers. Perhaps you think if you just mix it up a bit — a trends email here, a job post there, your newsletter on Thursdays — more people will enjoy your refreshing little updates.
You’re not wrong, but you’re walking a very fine line between getting in front of job seekers and finding your way onto their blacklist. You shouldn’t send more emails to get higher clicks at the risk of also increasing your unsubscribe rate. In fact, the recent email marketing data from GetResponse found your click-to-open rates will be higher if you don’t send out more than five newsletters in a week.
A more effective way to earn subscriber buy-in is to give them a way to opt-out. That’s right! Determine the types and number of campaigns that align with your subscribers’ interests and needs and give them a clear way to communicate if they do not desire to receive more of a certain type of communication.
This approach allows you to target the right subscribers with job posting email content that will get organic and effective results. You can then turn your focus to quality instead of quantity and watch as job seekers funnel into your talent pool.