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Behind the scenes: Gray TV shares talent attraction strategy

Read how Gray TV uses CareerArc, scaling their talent acquisition through automated social recruiting while maintaining authenticity.

We’re glamming up social recruiting in the Lights, Camera, Recruitment! episode recap of CareerArc’s Social Recruiting LIVE Talent Attraction Strategies Series. TL;DR–or watch in this case–Jennifer Dale, Vice President of Recruiting at Gray Television, delves into how Gray TV utilizes CareerArc, scaling their talent acquisition through automated social recruiting while maintaining authenticity in their messaging. 

While Gray TV shares the news with its audience, CareerArc helps them share their employer-branded and job content with job seekers via social media. Did we mention that it’s automated? 

Assisting Gray TV in hiring 600 employees last year. Keep reading for ways to benefit from social recruiting. 

Leading their talent attraction strategy with employer brand

In episode 2 of the Talent Attraction Strategies Series, Jennifer discussed Gray TV’s comprehensive talent attraction strategy, highlighting their innovative approach to recruiting and retaining top talent. At a high level, their strategy focuses on building a robust recruiting infrastructure while simultaneously investing in employee development and retention initiatives.

Gray TV encountered a common talent attraction obstacle, insufficient candidate awareness and engagement, prompting a need to adapt their recruitment methods. They realized talent attraction isn’t about throwing money at tactics–it’s about igniting passion and emotions through authenticity through the right tactics. Candidates want to feel excited about where they work, so that’s what Gray TV leads with.

By strategically leading its recruitment efforts with its employer brand, Gray TV emphasizes its benefits, mission, and culture. They tap into the unique aspects of their organization, like showcasing opportunities for career development, how journalists can shape the world through reporting the news, and how they foster a supportive environment for growth. Because of this Gray TV stands out as an employer of choice in the competitive broadcast journalism talent pool.

Now, let’s talk about the right tactics. 

Tactic takeaways: Finding what is and isn’t working

Whenever you are setting up a new tactic it’s important to know what that platform was built to do so you can set proper key performance indicators. Not all tactics were created to do the same thing!  It’s cautioned against relying solely on vendor metrics, advocating for the ability to track success beyond standard dashboard data to fully understand the impact of its strategic initiatives. 

Gray TV employs a multi-faceted recruitment strategy that not only drives short-term application volume but also drives candidates to join the Gray Talent Pool database so that they can nurture them in the long term. 

Jennifer also suggests that a shotgun approach–casting too wide of a net–did not provide the desired results as it failed to attract the right candidates. Instead, Gray TV advocates for a more targeted approach informed by data analysis to ensure recruitment efforts effectively reach and resonate with the desired audience. 

So, what are some of the things they are doing?

  1. Gray Digital Media–an arm of Gray TV–for paid campaigns, ensuring a wide reach and targeted exposure to both active and passive potential candidates. 
  2. In-person recruiting events at colleges and universities to actively engage the next generation. Here they promote their internships and share how they foster opportunities for growth within the organization.
  3. Social media via CareerArc… read more below!

Gray TV’s robust social recruiting strategy

By using CareerArc, Gray TV promotes its employer brand and job openings, with campaigns running simultaneously across multiple platforms. Jennifer praised the ease of automation that CareerArc provides. Gray TV prioritizes maintaining a strong presence on social media through organic storytelling, effectively reaching both passive and active candidates. This approach not only helps to increase candidate engagement with their online brand but also provides an opportunity for candidates to engage with their employees through their brand ambassador program. 

Success on social media is typically more difficult for teams to measure, but through trial and error, Gray TV shifted focus and refined its social recruitment strategy by moving away from measuring success solely based on comments or shares. Instead, the emphasis was placed upon recognizing that candidates may not always engage directly with content but are likely to click through to job postings on the company’s website once they become familiar with their brand. This highlights the importance of providing engaging content for candidates to absorb, akin to a billboard advertisement.

As discussed in Episode 2 of the Talent Attraction Strategies Series, Gray TV emphasizes the importance of tracking organic social media performance, relying on both CareerArc’s analytics tools and internal tools to monitor and evaluate their efforts effectively. They leverage pulse surveys, as an additional means of gauging audience engagement and sentiment. By using these analytical tools and feedback mechanisms, Gray TV ensures a comprehensive understanding of their social media impact, allowing for informed adjustments and optimizations to their recruitment strategies.

In regards to addressing the challenges of creating content that fuels a social recruiting strategy, think about how you can repurpose existing content on your careers website, employee reviews from review sites, and internal handbooks. Then, think about how you can grow from there based on what gets your candidates excited!

Video content is also highlighted as a potent tool for engagement on social media, with Gray TV recognizing its superior performance. Despite these effective strategies, it’s worth noting that not all organizations may have the resources to outsource content creation, emphasizing the importance of adapting approaches to suit individual capacities and needs within the industry.

In their recruitment strategy, Gray TV strategically uses various social media channels tailored to the media industry’s needs. LinkedIn and Twitter have emerged as the pivotal platforms in Gray TV’s social media strategy. By leveraging the power of company pages and brand ambassadors they can reach candidates at scale.  While Facebook is recognized as a valuable space for sharing content and news updates, it is not deemed suitable for job promotion within their industry as it is for other industries. Twitter in particular is a great place to reach journalists.

Zooming Out: Where to Start, Now

Gray TV underscores the importance of active listening to identify areas where the company is struggling and in need of assistance. This involves scrutinizing internal processes to pinpoint areas that may be overlooked or under-promoted. 

They also stress the significance of analyzing competitor strategies to gain insights into emerging trends and best practices within the industry. In line with this, Gray TV advocates for conducting regular audits of recruitment marketing efforts to ensure alignment with brand pillars. This includes defending brand pillars by ensuring that all branding elements, voice, and content consistently reflect the company’s values and mission. By adopting a proactive approach to listening and auditing, Gray TV aims to strengthen its recruitment marketing strategies and maintain a cohesive brand identity.

And, Scene…

In the behind-the-scenes look at Gray TV’s talent attraction strategy, the effectiveness of leveraging automated social recruiting to scale recruitment efforts while maintaining authenticity was showcased. Their success in hiring and retaining talent is attributed to a comprehensive approach that includes building a robust recruiting infrastructure, engaging with the next generation through in-person events, and utilizing CareerArc for branding and job promotion. 

By shifting away from traditional metrics and adopting strategies informed by data analysis, Gray TV emphasizes the importance of aligning branding and messaging with company values and mission. Through active listening, competitor analysis, and regular audits of recruitment marketing efforts, Gray TV aims to strengthen its recruitment strategies and maintain a cohesive brand identity in the dynamic media landscape.

And with help from tools like CareerArc, the only social recruitment platform designed for talent acquisition, lives like Jennifer Dale, recruiting for Gray TV, are made easier and automated. Curious if CareerArc can benefit you? Click here to learn more.

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