The case for employer branding

There are three key reasons why I cannot agree with Mark Ritson when he says ‘Employer branding can do real harm so stop it now’.

First, employer branding does have a target: the candidate. Such ‘consumers’ can be studied through a lengthy insight phase using a major provider, such as Universum. These companies are already surveying about 500,000 students on their opinion of employer brands.

About a decade ago, we decided to measure positive and negative brand associations, emotional sentiment, SWOT analysis, competitor mapping and both horizontal and vertical competitors in the talent landscape. We did this all on our initiative: do we win a prize for this?

Second, I challenge Mark on the point of differentiation. Google, a well-respected and attractive employer brand, has the tagline ‘Do cool things that matter’. It doesn’t mention innovation, integrity or empowering, so what says Mark to that?

Also, print media and employment brochures went out with the ark. Just look at JP Morgan’s ‘Field of Sparks’ campaign or Barclays’ ‘Opportunities on a different scale’ to see what a 2013 campaign looks like.

Third, Great Places to Work is a PR exercise and not an engagement survey to the extent the big boys such as AON Hewitt, Kenexa, Hays Group are offering – which are all bespoke engagement surveys based on an employer’s value proposition.

I am measuring candidate experience, external experience, internal, on-boarding, exit, top down, bottom up, sideways, back to front and back again…oh yeah and alumni to measure employee satisfaction.

Kathryn Callow, global employer branding manager, Ferrero

Football wi-fi tactics

In reference to Seb Joseph’s article on Wi-Fi-enabled football grounds, there is valuable consumer data that can be harvested through this.

Yes, app sponsorship presents an opportunity to target relevant consumers, and it allows advertisers to target supporters when they’re in a highly emotional and responsive state. But I believe the real power lies in harnessing data collected on fans to ensure even higher degrees of tailored targeting.

It’s worth noting that mobile operator data networks are not designed to handle small clusters of users, hence football stadium connectivity is dodgy at best – which is why stadium Wi-Fi fixes this issue.

Greg Isbister, chief executive officer, BlisMedia

Good to see Premiership football clubs embracing digital so they and their sponsors can interact with fans during the game.

However, only by putting digital at the heart of the organisation can they build deeper and more profitable relationships with UK fans, make inroads into the international market and boost their attractiveness to potential sponsors.

Peter Veash, chief executive officer, The BIO Agency

SMS battleground

While SMS is an effective channel and an important part of a mobile strategy, using it alone isn’t enough. It needs to be integrated with other mobile channels – email and social media must be taken into consideration too.

By integrating all modes of communication, whole mobile campaigns can be designed around the 360° view of the consumer, making campaigns truly targeted. Businesses need to embrace integrated mobile communications before they are left behind.

James Marscheider, head of marketing, Oxygen8 Group

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