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6 Tips for Texting Candidates in 2021

using mobile phones
When it comes to modern recruitment, engaging top talent and qualified candidates has become a challenge for employers. Since Millennials and Generation Z have taken over the candidate pool in full force, employers need to adopt a faster means of communication to grab and maintain their attention. This is where mobile phones come in!

The Rise of Mobile Phone Use and Texting

You may be surprised to hear that 92% of U.S. adults aged between 30 and 49 and a whopping 96% of those aged 18-29 own a smartphone today. This number was a mere 35% back in 2011! Mobile devices allow people to be connected with the digital world 24/7 even while on the go. They need information and they need it fast. That being said, almost 97% of mobile phone owners text regularly. Even with a ton of application options on their phones, they prefer using the standard messaging app for communication. Research tells that an average American spends almost 3 hours and 35 minutes on their phones. And guess what? 25% of this time is spent texting. Hence, it’s clear that recruiters who undermine the importance of text messaging as a recruitment channel miss out on a lot of great opportunities.

Tips for Recruitment Texting

Mobile has become the new ‘it’ factor in the recruitment world. 45% of job seekers use their phone to search for jobs at least once a day. Moreover, about 89% of people seeking job opportunities believe that mobile phone is a powerful job searching tool. While this opens a big door of opportunity for employers, recruitment texting is also simple and inexpensive. Whether you’re thinking of incorporating this technique into your recruitment strategy or have already begun to do so, you must have a good understanding of texting etiquettes when it comes to communicating with candidates. Just because candidates are receiving your text messages or going as far as opening them doesn’t guarantee that they’ll respond. Here are the top six tips for texting candidates.

1. A Brief Intro Goes a Long Way

Before anything, employers should introduce themselves to the candidates. While this may come across as something we call ‘common sense’, let’s tell you that many recruiters make the mistake of skipping the introduction. Let’s also make it clear that candidates get all sorts of messages on a daily basis. One mistake and your messages may get lost in the crowd of unsolicited messages. Therefore, make sure you always introduce yourself first so that the candidates know who you are, which company you’re representing, and what your purpose is for reaching out to them. A message starting as simple as ‘Hi, I’m ABC, a recruiter from XYZ company.’ can work wonders. Follow with giving a bit of context, such as ‘I came across your profile on LinkedIn and thought that your experience as an XYZ is quite impressive!’ In the end, convince them to take action by using a clear and direct CTA, such as ‘Let me know if you’re interested in learning more about the role. I’m looking forward to discussing the offer with you.’

2. Establish Two-Way Communication

The texting platform you use should encourage two-way communication. One of the best ways to go about this is by starting with a small mass texting campaign. Consider limiting your campaign size to 50 candidates so that it’s easy for you to get back to all the responses you’re going to get. Remember that for such campaigns, you can only target people who have opted in to receive messages from you. It’s one of the SMS laws in the U.S. In addition to having people’s consent, you must clearly communicate what kind of messages they can expect to receive. You should also pay attention to your frequency of sending mass messages and make sure that you don’t text during odd hours. Lastly, you must always give them the right to opt out of your messaging service. Research suggests that about 94% of text messages are opened and read by recipients. From there, getting a response from the candidates is pretty simple. Texts that allow them to respond directly are likely to mark the beginning of a conversation.

3. Wait before You Send in a Link

When you’re sending out a text message to job candidates, you may be tempted to include a link that you want them to be redirected to. This, however, is not a good practice. As soon as candidates spot a link to some website, video, or anything for that matter, they may lose interest in your message. Besides, algorithms often mark such messages as ‘spam’, especially if the link is the only thing there is in your text message. Hence, always save the links for later. Warm the candidates up with a couple of engaging messages first. This won’t only help you beat spam filters but also ensure a positive candidate experience.

4. Keep it Simple, Concise, and Conversational

A quick question, would you like to read through long, complicated messages on your mobile phone? No, right? The same goes for job candidates. Your goal should be to convey the right amount of information without making them feel bored. As a rule of thumb, always go for 160 characters or less. If you think a message is too lengthy to be sent via texting, suggest continuing the conversation on a phone call or email. Additionally, if you’re providing them with information, make sure it’s clear and comprehensible. On the other hand, when asking questions, try to make them straightforward and easy and quick to answer. Also, make sure you communicate like a real person if you want your text messages to be highly converting. Instead of obsessing too much over correct grammar and punctuation, keep it natural. This, however, doesn’t mean that you’re allowed to be unprofessional – just keep it simple, concise, and conversational as any real person would.

5. Personalize, Personalize, Personalize

In the world of recruitment texting, it’s all about making candidates feel special with genuine and personalized messages. You must understand that you are talking to real people. This is the most effective way of setting your messages and ultimately your business apart from others in the industry. Personalized messages help you make an instant connection with candidates and give them the impression that they’re a part of something special and exclusive. You can simply address each candidate by their name to grab attention and refer to their unique skill set or experience to convey that you’re really interested in working with them.

6. Choose the Right Time

When it comes to recruitment texting, you should keep business hours in mind. 24% of job candidates believe it’s inappropriate for employers to text them outside of regular business hours. It’s also one of the most common reasons for them not responding to your text messages. It has been found that the best time to send a text message to job candidates is when their working day starts or before the lunch break. 26% of candidates find it appropriate to receive a text message during 8-10 am while 29% of them prefer it between 12 and 2 pm. Considering this, make sure that you never schedule your texting campaigns after 5 pm. A well-timed campaign will put forward a professional image of your company.

Final Words

60% of recruiters are using the option of text messaging to reach out to job candidates. This powerful tactic is yielding positive results for organizations. To be a successful recruiter, you must connect with potential candidates where they are. (Hint: text messaging is where Millennials and Gen Z are!) That being said, recruitment texting is a skill to learn. With the aforementioned tips for texting candidates, you’ll be on the right way to acquire better hires to improve the quality of your workforce while reducing the hiring time.
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