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Texting in Recruiting – Does it Really Work?
We’ve heard a lot about mass texting in recruiting over the years, but the industry can’t decide whether to love this powerful tool for candidate engagement or avoid it all together. We wanted to end the debate once and for all, so we reached out to our partners at Text-Em-All to get their thoughts on the three most-talked-about issues surrounding automated messaging.
Is mass messaging actually effective?
The short answer is HECK YES. When it comes to candidate and employee engagement, it’s all about timing. You need to get the right message to the right person at the right time. Mass texting gives you the power to do that, at scale, with minimal effort from your team.
The big “but” here, is that sending high-volume messages to your talent pool is only going to be effective if you do it the right way. According to Jonathan Melton, Account Manager for Partnerships and Integrations at Text-Em-All, your success depends on how the message is crafted, and who that message is sent to.
“If you are sending a mass message looking for forklift drivers, make sure your candidate list is filled with those who actually make sense for the role. Nothing gets you candidates opting out of messages faster than sending them jobs that don’t line up with their skills or messaging associates who are already on assignment. Likewise, the content of the message is key. Our Staffing Playbook goes through all the best tips for ensuring your messages have the best chance of getting high engagement rates.”
In short: You need to keep your audience in mind and build a message that targets them directly if you want to create an effective messaging strategy or campaign.
Is mass texting legal?
Once you’ve determined that texting your talent pool is the best way to deliver your message quickly and effectively, you may start worrying about the legal implications of sending mass messages. Don’t. Mass messaging is legal in all 50 states as long as you obtain consent.
According to Jonathan, consent is the first, and most important step in staying compliant because “any automated messaging service that is used for business messages can only send messages to those who are expecting the communication.”
So, if you’re purchasing lists from a third party for your messaging campaign, now’s the time to see if you can get a refund. These contacts have not provided your business with the appropriate consent and can pursue legal action if provoked.
Obtaining consent from your audience is simple. Just ask. You can send them an email, give them a call, or have them fill out a form. As long as you can provide documentation that your candidate or employee provided the green light for your team to text them, then you’re in the clear.
To sum it up: If a candidate gives you their phone number, you’re good to go. If you’re getting that phone number from anyone but the candidate, you’re going to be in a world of hurt.
Another thing to keep in mind is going toll-free. This isn’t actually required to be compliant in today’s environment, but it’s a good thing to consider as you build your strategy. Phone carriers are becoming stricter with local number texting in an effort to protect consumers from scams as well as spam, and it’s only a matter of time before legislation catches up.
Now, moving to an 800 number may sound counterintuitive if you want to create that warm, 1:1 contact, but according to Text-Em-All, there’s a number of big benefits that come with making the switch.
“With a toll-free text number, the carriers put you on the high-speed routes with minimal throttling and text blocking.” This means you don’t need to wrestle with “batch texting” like you’d need to if you use local numbers.
Also, with a local phone number, you can’t see if the text actually made it to the contact’s handset or not. With toll-free texting, however, “…you will know exactly which phone numbers received the text, which didn’t, and if not, why they didn’t.”
In short: Going toll-free isn’t required to stay compliant right now, but it puts your firm in a better position to be compliant in the future. It also helps you deliver the right message to the right person quickly and collect data on how they engage with that message.
What other things should I consider before hitting send?
Building the best message and obtaining a consenting audience isn’t always enough. If you want to have continued success…
- Do check to see what percentage of your database is landline phone numbers vs. mobile phone numbers. Landlines can’t receive text messages, so there’s no point in wasting valuable time and money trying. So send a voice message instead.
- Do provide a clear introduction when texting candidates and employees. They’re less likely to ignore you, or block you, if they know who you are.
- Do be direct and informative in your messages.
- Don’t try to use a local line for high volume texting. You will be paying to send texts that the carriers probably block or throttle, meaning you aren’t filling your open orders as quickly.
- Don’t send something out that the carriers could mistake as spam. Examples include non-branded shortened URLs, exclamation marks, $$$$, and all caps.
To sum it up: Be thoughtful in how you approach your messages, don’t be spammy, and utilize a combination feature that will automatically send a text message to cell phones and a voice call to landlines.
We aim to keep people informed when it matters most. We deliver personalized, informational, emergency mass text messages and phone calls fast—whether they’re going to five people or 50,000.
Avionté Staffing Software delivers a robust platform for clerical, light industrial, IT, and professional staffing firms that includes powerful ATS, payroll and billing solutions, and the first paycard designed specifically for the staffing industry.