Social media recruiting strategy and Google’s possible over-optimization penalties (Part 1 of 2)
Posted by: Joel Capperella
Although often overlooked, search engine optimization (SEO) is a necessity when developing and executing a social media recruiting strategy. Online conversations have a nearly perpetual life, which makes much of the discussion about a company’s employment opportunities forever searchable.
As we’ve discussed before, a company’s social media recruiting strategy should focus on building a talent community. To do this, an organization must care about how it performs in the search terms that community members use to look for employment opportunities and locate information about enhancing their skills and careers.
Many times, an organization’s primary focus is on ranking well for job-specific searches. However, targeted keyword usage and link building are common tactics to optimize a job posting and can offer high rewards. For example, consider the benefit of performing well in a search for “.net jobs in the Philadelphia region.”
However, this targeted SEO practice might be coming to an end in the not-too-distant future. Understanding the changes that are taking place will be crucial to developing a strong social media strategy. Here’s a quick rundown of what you need to know.
What are the potential changes? Earlier this month at South by Southwest (SXSW), Google executive and SEO expert Matt Cutts presented in a session titled “Dear Google & Bing: Help Me Rank Better!” In his presentation, Cutts revealed that in the coming months Google will be making changes to its search algorithm that will penalize sites that are over-optimized.
What is over-optimization? Over-optimization refers to the exaggerated use of keywords and links. Time will tell how this shakes out in practice, but it seems clear that Google intends to reward content and its relevancy rather than just semantics and incoming links.
How should you maintain your social media recruiting strategy to naturally support this new direction? Talent community engagement must be ordered around content development on topics that are relevant and important to the community.
Understanding these changes and how they affect search rankings is vital to any company looking to build a strong social media recruiting strategy. Those that quickly adapt will gain a significant head start in talent community ownership.
As you consider these changes, check back in a few days for content development best practices. The advice will help your social media recruiting strategy remain strong during the Google transition.