Monster’s Eric Winegardner (irony alert: the link points to his LinkedIn profile) sets the bar for the use of social media in branding. The consummate showman travels relentlessly and creates an intimate encounter for each audience he engages. Winegardner understands that the most important part of social media is social. He’s gotten so good at it that everyone expects that he will continue to set the standard.
At last month’s Recruiting Innovation Summit, however, a branding challenger emerged. They even featured lots of great presentations about ROI (and selling ideas internally) and not much about innovation. In retrospect, the most interesting thing about the mini-conference was the emergence of this new voice.
I think you’ll be surprised to learn that it wasn’t any of the new social media firms who made such a splash. Their marketing is shockingly conventional. The new player is an old reliable member of the scene.
Dice.com showed up in Palo Alto and changed the dynamics of conference marketing.
The first DICE project was to develop a collection of photos with conference goers offering recruiting tips. (I, of course, really loved this one.) Take a moment to run through the slideshow. Competitors, commentators, bloggers, pundits, conference organizers and recruiters alike all bought off on the concept.
Building on the first idea, the Dice team captured video interviews (with Sarah White doing the interviewing) with a similar range of thought leaders and conference goers.
The net result for Dice?
- 100 photos of key industry influencers with Dice branding
- 30 videos of key players suitable for YouTube (Sarah White was the interviewer.)
- 1 solid article (though the article seems to miss my very valuable contributions)
In other words, Dice used the Recruiting Innovation Summit to announce its material entry in the social media sweepstakes. By building a treasure trove of links, content and connections, they raised their profile in ways that most marketers can only dream of.
The key to 21st Century marketing effectiveness is a combination of intimacy and search engine friendliness. It’s hard to get your mind around it because it includes what used to be two extremes. The social in social media is all about personal touch, one to one engagement, intimacy. The media in social media is just like any other media you’ve ever seen.
Keep your eyes on Dice.
One thing you ought to notice here is that the two best examples of social media marketing in the HR and Recruiting space come from Job Boards. These supposed victims of the social media up tick are starting to find their legs. Being a job board (before the advent of the mass aggregators) required a combination of personal touch and media expertise. These days, they’re starting to dig back to their roots to find their strengths.
If you don’t know it, Dice was a job board before there was a commercial internet. Hosted on a bulletin board system, the company served Silicon Valley Recruiters years before there were web browsers. They have managed to continue to be relevant through several generations of technology and it looks like they’re back again.