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Employer Brand Strategy Sprint Series


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Paid Search - Are You Doing It Right?


Paul Mason Paul Mason



Careers Insider, PPC

Paid Search - Are You Doing It Right?
… because you need to be! 

It’s a strange old world at the moment (pft, understatement of the millennium). There’s a lot of change happening - talk of the “new normal” (whatever that means…), people in work, out of work, looking for work, losing jobs, furloughed, wondering what’s next…

One thing we can expect with a reasonable amount of certainty is that there is going to be one heck of a race for talent once the world starts opening up for business again. And it’s likely to be one of the most competitive landscapes we’ve ever witnessed. 

It’s never been a more vital time to repel the many and attract the few. You want the right people for your business, and you want them as quickly as possible.

And, while we might be entering the “new normal”, some things will remain as is, for now. Pay per click advertising is currently the go-to channel to mobilize recruitment quickly and effectively, and gain instant visibility with your audience; with more people working digitally than ever, it’s only going to become more important to get this right. Paid search will, with certainty, play a huge role in your recruitment success story - so it’s wise to use the time now to make sure you’re utilizing it to its full potential - before the flood gates open, so to speak. 

This is my world of expertise and passion - so I’m really happy to share the insights I’ve learned over the years into the realms of paid social. I’ve put together 4 short videos to offer you some thoughts on why Google Paid Ads could truly be your secret weapon when it comes to talent attraction. Plus I’ll let you in on how the Google Ads platform works, how it can be used to launch a successful talent attraction campaign, and what the key differences are between PPC and Programmatic.

Before that, though, I’ll provide a quick textual discussion on the pros and cons of Programmatic and Google Ads, for quick reference should you need it. Happy reading, folks - and you know you can always contact me if you have any questions! 


Head of Digital at Ph. Creative

Paid Search - Are You Doing It Right?


When I discuss paid search with HR Directors and Talent Attraction Managers all over the world on a regular basis, they generally want to talk about these three things:

  1. How to activate their Employer Brand strategy;

  2. How to use paid search effectively to attract only the right talent to their careers website; and

  3. The correct strategy to help reduce job board and Programmatic spend.

Over $5bn is spent on Programmatic search on a yearly basis alone in the US. This is a phenomenal statistic - and the number is only going to rise.

Programmatic uses real-time advertising, has a greater reach when it comes to targeting users, and offers an increased audience reach compared with a platform such as Google Ads. But, because of the nature of the platform and the ads, Programmatic is very much seen as a disruptor when it comes to online marketing. Ads are served to users while they’re looking at other, unrelated websites - not necessarily in the right frame of mind to be looking at job adverts. As a result, click-through rate and conversion rates are usually pretty low when it comes to Programmatic, and the minimum spend would normally be in the region of $5,000 - $10,000 per month on click spend alone.

This can make Programmatic an expensive choice when it comes to your advertising budget.

Google Ads

Google Ads, on the other hand, provides a level of control and transparency that Programmatic doesn’t. Although Google is limited to anyone browsing their search and display network (including YouTube), over 80% of all job searches are started on Google, and a well-optimized paid campaign can ensure that you’re only targeting users searching for keywords relevant to your live jobs.

This makes Google Ads a very cost-effective and attractive proposition when it comes to talent attraction - especially when it comes to repelling the many and attracting the few into your talent pool.

What is PPC?

In episode one, we take a brief look at what PPC is, and how it works. We also look at the difference between Google’s search and display network, and how it be used effectively in talent attraction. Finally, we explore the importance of keywords in paid campaigns.

How PPC Can Impact Your Talent Attraction Efforts.

In episode two, we take a closer look at some of the reasons why so many HR Directors choose PPC when it comes to activating their employer brand - especially when it comes to mobilizing talent attraction campaigns quickly and effectively in particular locations.

PPC Vs. Programmatic.

Episode three takes a look at some of the fundamental differences when it comes to PPC and Programmatic, examining how they stack up when it comes to talent attraction.  We look at the differences between their targeting and costing models, and discuss the possibility of running both to maximize recruitment opportunities.

How Ph. Creative’s PPC Strategies Work.

Episode four shows how we at Ph. Creative work when it comes to paid campaigns, providing more insight into our reporting and communication, and how we seamlessly integrate clients into our agency.


I hope you’ve enjoyed watching these short tutorials, and that they’ve given a good overview of why paid search should be at the forefront of your mind when it comes to activating your employer brand strategy or mobilizing a targeted talent attraction campaign. A well-built and optimized paid campaign can significantly reduce your advertising spend, and lower your average cost per hire. If you’d like to discuss creating a paid campaign for your careers site, or want us to take a look at your existing PPC campaign, don’t be afraid to get in touch!

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