A few months back in this column, one of my colleagues addressed the increasing value of search marketing and more specifically, job optimization, to a company's sourcing & recruiting toolkit. Better ROI, more financial flexibility, improved targeting capabilities and job seekers flocking to search engines in droves have enticed many organizations, and quite possibly your own, to give search, especially pay per click (PPC) search, a place in your candidate attraction strategy.
By embracing search marketing, recruiting organizations are discovering what B2B and B2C advertisers have known for years: that it is possible, and quite desirable, to "own" your visibility when it comes to search engine results. What does this mean? Instead of driving traffic to a place where you compete for eyeballs and interest with other companies and firms — you can drive traffic right into your content — whether that be your career site, a landing page or even a specific job listing. We must walk before we can run however — and that means getting our organizations' content visible in search engine results in the first place.
Paid search is a pretty simple concept — define the keywords and geographies you want to target, set a monthly budget, outline an optimization strategy, and launch. With paid search, visibility on the first page of search engine results is easy to obtain and you don't pay for visibility until your ad is clicked on (i.e. pay-per-click).
Organic optimization is a bit of a different beast and requires some additional and committed participation to be effective for your organization. Think about your typical search engine results page — approximately fifteen results per page, and only about half of those are above the fold — with hundreds if not thousands of sources vying to be seen in those results and within the first few pages if possible. Using both technology & human touch, search marketing experts revel in the ongoing, always evolving pursuit of improved rankings & relevancy. From ensuring content can even be seen by the search engines to strategizing how best to reach the target audience desired — organic search optimization is an indispensable but ongoing and ever-present activity for savvy marketers today.