Ad targeting has become standard practice on Facebook, as advertisers can now point their messages toward people who are 25 years old, living in Miami, have been to college, and list baseball as an interest. Ziv Eliraz, CEO of social recruiting platform Zao, thinks employers can use similar tactics to target job ads to those who have work experience and education relevant to the positions.
Zao, which was founded last year, works with employers to find quality applicants through social media. Eliraz sees a great inefficiency in the current model, where businesses simply post job ads like they would any other story on their Facebook pages. The problem? Only a fraction of a page’s fans actually see posts. By just posting job information on a brand’s timeline, they’re not reaching their full audience. Eliraz said he founded Zao after he tired of the current system, where employers try to cast a wide net, but receive too many irrelevant applications.
Eliraz talked with AllFacebook about how this model should change:
These companies that have established themselves over the year have seen Facebook and LinkedIn, and their response to that is to allow posting jobs on walls. The recruiter can go and take the job and post it on their wall, and what that has the effect of doing is nothing, because the posts get lost in the stream.
Zao takes listings and reaches out specifically to Facebook users (friends of the company’s current employees who are on Facebook) who have the qualifications and work histories and are in the relevant business areas. Say a company based in Chicago is looking for someone with a master’s degree and IT background. Zao searches Facebook for people who have their current city listed in or near Chicago, and who list education or work history that lines up with what the employer seeks. From there, Zao sends a report to the company, listing the top users from this search.
Companies can then send those users Facebook messages, inviting them to apply for the job. This allows businesses to reach out to the people who already meet the baseline criteria for the job, and who are in the area. If the person is happily employed or does not wish to apply, they can also refer peers to the position, with rewards if hires are made. Zao wants to tap into the power of recommendation, as messages or prompts from friends are much more powerful than those coming from brands or companies.
Eliraz feels that this kind of targeted job search could change how employers utilize Facebook:
What we do is not just post the job out to their friends. We scan their friends and we search for the ones who are in Boston or are Java developers, or whatever…. With one click, you can forward the job to them in a personal message. You don’t post on their wall — you make a direct personal communication from you to that person. Those are never ignored. Instead of blasting your wall with an irrelevant message, you send a very specific, very detailed, very relevant message only to the relevant people.
Readers: Have you ever received a job recommendation (or sent one) through Facebook?
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