Social media is a highly valuable way of engaging with potential employees, as it allows your organization to tap into a huge talent pool. According to Meghan M Biro, writing for Forbes, social media is “the best way to reach job seekers” since “far more job seekers are on social media than aren’t”.

A particularly interesting way to use social media for potential employee engagement is via Twitter chat. These are public discussions centered around a specific topic, reflected in a hashtag, and held at a scheduled time.

Chats can help you leverage the conversational nature of Twitter and really connect with potential candidates by sharing information on vacancies and what it’s like to work at your company.

why use twitter chats to engage with candidates?

Social media management platform Hootsuite advises that “a Twitter chat is a golden opportunity to connect with and engage your customers in a meaningful way”. This is because it allows your business to show that it is open and “willing to engage with them - rather than just broadcasting content to them”. When it comes to recruitment, this is vital. 

Showing that you can listen is a highly important factor in appealing to top talent. Candidates increasingly want to work for employers that show they are ready to enter into meaningful discussions. This is particularly true of millennial job seekers, who “want ongoing conversations”, according to Gallup’s How Millennials Want to Work and Live report. Chats give your company the chance to hear what candidates think, lending you an insight into the job seeker’s motivations and requirements.

According to Hootsuite, Twitter chats allow your business to “boost your brand awareness through increased mentions and discussions surrounding your brand”. When you want to attract diverse and digitally savvy candidates, it pays to get your brand in front of as many of them as possible. And when Twitter has an average of 330 million monthly active users, there are a lot of potential candidates. It gives your company the chance to open the door to professionals who may not have considered or even known about it.

consider the goal of your Twitter chat

In its Modern Recruiter’s Guide, LinkedIn highlights the importance of raising awareness of your company. It states that “before they can picture you as their next employer, [candidates] need to learn more about you, your organization, and start building trust and affinity”.

A Twitter chat is the perfect opportunity to give these potential candidates a look into the way your company works. In order to start building a relationship and trust with them, you should allow them the insight into your organization they are looking for. It could be the spark a highly-qualified candidate needs to imagine themselves working at your business. 

Don’t ignore the fact you can post media files to your tweets. It gives you the opportunity to post photos of what goes on in your office or videos of your employees explaining what their days look like. Some 46 percent of job seekers want to hear about your company from employees, according to LinkedIn’s Inside the Mind of Today’s Candidate report, so give them what they want.

how to host an informative twitter chat

Making sure your Twitter chat is effective and engaging can be challenging if you’re a beginner. But following a few simple steps can boost your confidence and help you achieve a significant return on your time investment.
One of the first things you need to do is decide on the specific topic you’ll be discussing during your Twitter chat. Think about whether you want to get people’s thoughts on what makes the perfect workplace or if you want to offer guidance on certain roles within your organization, for example.

Once you’ve established what you’ll be talking about, it’s time to promote it. Make sure you’re using all of your social media accounts to advertise the time, date and topic of your chat. Hootsuite also recommends encouraging your employees to participate and spread the word. Don’t forget to email out reminders to your contacts so they know when to join in. it’s important to consider the right time for your chat. As you’ll likely be targeting professionals currently in employment, it’s best to conduct it outside of working hours.

Meanwhile, social network management software provider Buffer suggests that “keeping questions open and pointed in a positive direction can help spur the most constructive conversations”. For instance, ask participants what one thing would make their work lives easier instead of what they don’t like about their current roles. It also provides you with an effective way of researching what job seekers are looking for.

Twitter chats are a highly informative way of engaging with candidates and employee engagement. They give you the chance to hear what potential applicants want from an employer, while showcasing your organization in a less formal and pressured environment. Using them the right way can see your company making meaningful connections with those taking part.