Besides being among the most notable brands in the world, what do Apple, Google and Microsoft have in common? They prioritize their employer brand because they know it’s how to hire and retain exceptional talent – and ultimately reach consumers with an authentic, credible message of trust.
Trust is more important than ever
We’re living in an age of distrust. According to the 2017 Edelman TRUST BAROMETER, we’ve experienced the “largest-ever drop in trust across the institutions of government, business, media and NGOs” this year. Potential employees (and customers) are more likely to approach companies with skepticism and are more likely to believe that a “person like yourself” is just as credible as an expert – and doubly as credible as your CEO. But while they may not instantly trust your C-suite, messages coming from employees are a different matter.
What is an employer brand?
Wikipedia defines an employer brand as “an organization’s reputation as an employer, and its value proposition to its employees, as opposed to its more general corporate brand reputation and value proposition to customers.” Employer brands speak volumes to potential employees – and customers – because messages tend to feel more authentic and real than those driven from marketing.
How major companies are marketing their employer brands
If no one knows about your great employer brand, it can’t help your company. That’s why companies are marketing their employer brands just like they would anything else, through email campaigns and events, through landing pages and video. Yet perhaps the best way companies can communicate about their employer brands is through social media. Savvy employer brand companies like Microsoft and Cisco are inviting employees tell their stories through social channels directly, letting potential hires in on what it’s really like to work at their organizations. In the case of Cisco, the company has raised eyebrows for completely handing over the Snapchat reins to employees, trusting them to post their unfiltered #lifeatcisco experiences without the filter of marketing layered on top.
Employer branding is key to retention
Touting amazing benefits, competitive salaries and hands-on leadership will not only help draw in new hires, making recruiters’ jobs a lot easier, but it will help retain current employees. Building and cultivating a positive employer brand is about having a culture of shared values: an all-for-one and one-for-all approach to the workplace. That positive approach can’t help but make an impact on current employees – and happy employees tend to stay put. In fact, a survey of 2,250 corporate recruiters by LinkedIn revealed that companies with stronger employer brands had 28 percent lower turnover rates than companies with weaker employer brands.