All Posts in Social Media

July 24, 2014 - No Comments!

SBCo July Newsletter- Tackling the Myths of Social

Corey Protzman joined our firm last year and has been learning our sourcing and selection business at an accelerated rate! She brings experience in the tech business as well as a Graduate Degree in Organizational Leadership. Corey is guiding our clients with fresh insight and taking them to the next level in social media recruiting. I was relieved to hear our amazing millennial team member say that we didn’t have to master every aspect of social media overnight. She said, “find the pace that is right for your organization, get involved or be left behind.” Corey has inspired us to embrace this communication platform and leverage the tools and connections in ways that supports our core value – building relationships that matter with our clients and our colleagues.

I decided that you must meet Corey, our newest member of the SBCo team and hear her point of view on diving into social media feet first!

Sherry Benjamins: What has surprised you the most about how companies use social media?

Corey Protzman: You don’t have to be a “Social Media Guru” to effectively use social media. In fact, it is a stretch for anyone to call themselves a guru of social media as this suggests complete knowledge and understanding. The unpredictability of social media is why many organizations follow the simple recipe of a Facebook business page followed by a Twitter presence and a following of fans. Some even opt for a short-cut of purchasing fans/followers to make the process quicker (sidenote: this is NOT a good idea). In this day and age, that simple recipe is only going to get you stale and bland. It is time for organizations to take a multi-pronged and customized approach to social media. Do you have a visually impactful organization (I am looking at you, National Geographic)? If yes, then consider Instagram and Pinterest. Make sure you also understand your audience. Are you targeting Millennials? If yes, it is time to get active on Twitter. Pursuing adults ranging from 35-55? Prioritize Facebook and LinkedIn.

SB: How do you see social media changing the recruiter/candidate conversation?

CP: Social media should be a dialogue, not a monologue. Human Resources teams must actively engage with candidates. Active engagement does not equate to tweets that say, "I'm recruiting for a [position title] to work for [company name] located in [town way beyond your commute.]" There is no engagement in those tweets. Followers do not have a call to action and it doesn’t address the pivotal question of “What’s in it for them?” Think of social media as a way to build relationships with a community of talent and have a real conversation about real interests and real skills. Someday that person may join your organization or share needs with a friend. Cold calling is 20th century and candidate conversation is 21st century. Zappos has tackled this head one with their “Zappos Insider Program” and elimination of job postings.

A client of ours recently hired a full time Recruiter Consultant to develop future pipelines for talent. They are having conversations with individuals to learn about their interests, their career and how to help them develop their skills. Social tools support taking this real conversation to ongoing dialogue and authentic relationship building.

SB: Are you seeing traditional brands translate their messaging into a contemporary social space? A message you can connect to?

CP: Some people reading this may be thinking I don’t have that recognizable brand to start with or “we’re a traditional brand that can’t translate into this modern social space”. It may be time to rethink that logic; there is a spot in social for all organizations. For instance, Coca-Cola is paving the way when it comes to cultivating content, engaging its audience, and generating material that their followers can share. All their accounts speak to their vision and are invested in personalized experiences and customer (and future employee) touches. On Twitter, about 83% of Coca-Cola’s Tweets are direct @Replies (even direct replies to competitors as seen below!).


Many organizations can post content, but few engage and generate opportunities for followers to be indirect brand advocates. When done correctly, content shared by an organization on Facebook is seen by more non-fans than fans uniquely due to content sharing, liking, and commenting!

The important takeaways when it comes to social media:

  • Marketing messages should be integrated in recruiting. Make sure your organization’s vision is involved in every part of your recruiting strategy.
  • Tailor your strategy to fit your organization’s brand and the target candidate.
  • No organization is too old to make an impact on social media.
  • There is not one way to tackle this – experiment and don’t be afraid to try the next great tool as long as your philosophy on connecting with others is your foundation.
  • Focus on personalization and conversational interactions – find someone on your team that is passionate about this and give them the lead.

Need help navigating the social media world? We offer customized consulting to help teams figure out how social media can be a component of their recruiting success strategy. Want to learn more? Contact Corey Protzman at

What’s New at S. Benjamins & Co

KatherineOur team has been very busy on the training and recruiting end this summer. Katherine Moody, one of our most loved SBCo colleagues, has been teaching and mentoring recruiters to be Trusted Advisors and helps them establish a new consultative relationship with their Hiring Managers. Lucky for our clients and colleagues, she has written and published her most recent book on this topic, which can be found here:


S. Benjamins & Co., with Corey’s help, is actively immersed in the changing patterns of social media as it relates to engaging with top talent. webiste photoMany of our clients confide in us that they are bombarded with the latest and greatest tools for social, but few are addressing the how of social. Our team is beginning a three-part workshop series with our Introduction Session planned September 30th from 9 – 11 am in Irvine (location TBD).

Watch for your formal invitation; “It’s not the What but it’s the How: A hands-on look at social recruiting”.






Feedback on this Newsletter:

"Sherry - this is one of the best newsletters I have seen. I think your readers will really be inspired to rethink their social media efforts. Great job to you (and Corey)!!!"

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July 19, 2014 - No Comments!

Job Hunting in the Interconnected World

I had the pleasure of speaking this week to a group of 40 senior managers who are in job search mode.  I do this a few times a year and noticed this time, the group was smaller and much more positive about prospects.  They were an impressive experienced group of leaders from Operations to Sales and Marketing as well as HR.  They see the up-swing in the market but they still experience uneven growth in unpredictable places. They all chimed in that the opportunities might be there but the navigation to real conversations with corporate leaders was still illusive and frustrating.  The hiring process remains slow and elongated.   The old style of job search for a specific job is fading away.

Why is this the case? We are in a talent scarce market for those hard to fill, leadership or technically savvy middle or senior managers.  So, we clearly need to fill jobs and they are still posted out there.  However, there is a lot of noise and managers are overwhelmed with work.  We need to look at the network and the art of connecting.  I know we are all on LinkedIn checking out each other.  Who needs a resume today?   Talent is connecting and communicating across platforms and their own network and managers are doing the same thing.   It goes both ways.  It is a transparent and interconnected world.  If one company treats a candidate poorly, then it is shared across multiple or hundreds of connections potentially within minutes.  If Zappos leads the way by creating an Insider program - we all learn about it and comment.  What a novel idea, to create a place where a company can build new fans and leverage the relationship they already have with a huge fan base.

The Wall Street Journal this morning, has a weekend interview column with Reid Hoffman, the founder of LinkedIn and COO of PayPal.  He says that "your identity is now constituted by your network. You are your friends, you are your tribe, you are your interactions with colleagues and customers and even your competitors."   He says and I agree that we are no longer in control of our resume.

So, where are the jobs?  The Inc 500 and 5000 CEO's are fueling our economy and soaking up what they must do to attract and engage talent.  Every resource matters to them.  I have had more fascinating conversation in the past six months about how to build a great internal talent attraction system and culture than I can recall.  Yes, there is a steep learning and implementing curve for the small company but they care about getting the right talent and view them as an investment.  The concept of helping employees be "employable" by training and expanding their role is natural and essential  in a smaller company.  You have to wear many hats.

So, what does this mean for the job seeker? Forget the conversation about a "job" or a "title" and start communicating your perspective about business and growing talent.  Share your point of view online and in person - start conversations with business leaders and your job prospects in an entirely new way.  Ask them about their challenges, be curious, share your views and engage them.  Be bold, and give up a narrow view on what your title was  in a former job.  This interconnected world offers so much more information about who we are as leaders and the work we can get involved in.  Start there and you may be surprised to learn of an opportunity where there is a match in interest and in need.  We are in the network age - it is far more interesting and allows us to share our stories and find synergy in more fun ways.  Enjoy!

July 15, 2014 - No Comments!

Do’s and Don’ts of Social Recruiting: How to wade through the mystery

14.4 million people in the United States have used social media to search for jobs. That is 14.4 million active job seekers, but there are millions more who are passive candidates actively involved in social media, but not using social to job hunt.

Don’t leave Social Recruiting up to the Intern: We have all been interns at one time or another and while they are an amazing source of work and ideas, they are not qualified to man your social recruiting ship. Your team should be the one owning the content and the message because they are most familiar with your organization and its needs.

Do develop a Social Recruiting Strategy: Identify your target audience, find out which platform they spend their time on most, set goals as a team for your recruitment efforts, and look critically at the social management tools, and applicant tracking you will need to get the job done.

DON’T replace traditional methods completely: Social media should be part of the strategy, not the whole thing. Social media can tell you a lot about a candidate, but it cannot show you someone’s soft skills, leadership traits, or team mentality. The only way to truly know if a candidate is the right fit is through the traditional interview and screening processes.

DO put emphasis on candidate’s social experience: Make the application process as seamless as if they had walked into your office and filled out an application. The links that you post should always be mobile compatible to ensure efficiency and recruiters should be prepared to answer candidate questions via social media. Even a small acknowledgement that a candidate’s application was received to a candidate's email inbox can make a world of difference.

Remember… social media may be your first interaction with a potential candidate. This is your chance to attract top talent and leave them with an impression that makes them want to learn more.

DON’T treat every platform the same: Each social platform has different audiences, niches, and purposes. For these reasons, it is critical to treat each platform separately, but show consistency in your messaging. The voice should be the same, but the delivery should vary based on who you are targeting. Understand the age group, demographic, and target position for each platform and tailor to their tendencies. This kind of customization will pay off in quality hires.

DO target your efforts: Social media has an inept power to suck time. In order to avoid the time suck vortex, target your efforts. Participate in one to two twitter chats per week, but don’t feel obligated to participate in the thousands that go on daily. Tailor your content and time to the audience you are after. This is also where that sneaky social media strategy comes in handy.


Courtesy Google Images

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June 20, 2010 - No Comments!

SBCo Newsletter- January 2010

Social Networks for Talent - Get in or Lose Out - Sherry Benjamins

Social networking is a hot topic everywhere and it is not a fad. It is here to stay and will alter our workplace in ways that are not even apparent today.  One of the most dynamic areas for HR will be in attracting talent.  There will also be plenty of new collaboration and sharing tools for employees and we are seeing innovation in this arena right now.

First, let me comment on using social media tools for attracting talent. A recent Kennedy report confirmed that a majority of recruiting organizations rely on the Internet and on-line communities for finding talent.  This is not surprising, however, "reliance" has a broad definition and frankly, we see clients just touching the surface.

One of our clients said, “This younger generation expects access to all the social media tools; they are totally wired and live off these connections. We have to figure out how to relinquish control – forget control.”  Social media tools will transform the definition of community and our ability to stay ahead of the competition.  It will do this in two ways; the way you search for talent and in how you build internal communities of employees.  Let me touch on both briefly.

Do not fear, for those that know me, I am not giving up on face to face relationship building – it is too critical to my own learning and fun quotient.  However, I am taking the time to incorporate these tools into our relationship building and business overall.  We have been doing this for some time now in serving our clients and I thought it would be great to share what we have learned and how easy it is to take a few small steps that can pay off in big ways.

It was not long ago that our “front end” of search to identify targeted pools of talent relied on phone calls and creating organization charts.  We still need those strategies but to accomplish this with cyberspace tools has taken us, and I know some of you, to an entirely new level.

Here is What We Have Learned:

Our first response to this newly connected world was the concept of creating a unique website for each position. This website goes far beyond a typical job description by giving the candidate extensive information about the company, the position, what makes it a great opportunity, and more. It is truly a unique marketing vehicle for your position....and something you can easily do as well.

The advantages of these websites:

  • Significant reduction in time to generate candidates by streamlining the upfront process of getting compelling information to market.
  • Easy for people to share the information with others, thus increasing the exposure of the position in the target market.
  • Access to the site via mobile phones.

The old method of distributing information about the position is no longer efficient.  Sourcing today requires getting out in front of as many people as possible, employed as well as unemployed, and social networking sites support and accelerate "getting messages out."

This does not mean that identifying all possible sources of gathering information and identifying candidates is abdicated to social networking.  We use research methodologies and build relationships in appropriate associations, conferences, consultants, etc. Identifying candidates today includes all forms of networking, online and off line.

How is Social Media impacting your organization?

Organizations are just now determining how to use social media and define how to exchange information and resources across multiple businesses and geographies.  Organizations are going to have to decide where the boundaries are going to be set.  There are some fascinating “Trailblazers” as I became aware of when reading “Social Media at Work” by Arthur Jue.  He and his co-authors are organizational experts from Oracle and they have a practical and down to earth view of the issues. Check out their new book; it is very current and informative.

The authors state that “shared knowledge is a new currency” in our organizations and with our employees.  It is intended to build competitive advantage and I can only imagine how global communities will emerge in the next 6 - 12 months.  IBM has the “Beehive”, Best Buy has their “Blue Shirt Nation”, Hewlett Packard has their “Watercooler.” We should be on the look-out for new trailblazers for they will set the pace.  We can learn what works and how we can leverage knowledge across time zone, language and function.  Pretty exciting for the future!

Expanding our use of social media in organizations will:

  • Facilitate connection to broader communities
  • Change our view about internal vs. external and support “open” systems
  • Open dialogue among experts and innovators beyond the immediate work group
  • And, there will be controversy - some "good" and "bad" about security with your IT partners.

We plan to share what we are learning and how social media strategies can leverage internal recruiting performance.  Consider small steps whether it be in the attracting of talent category or sharing of internal knowledge.  Let us know how it’s working and if we can help you into this evolving territory.

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