Recruitment Marketing 101: Glossary of Terms

As the demand for top talent continues to outpace the supply of top talent at an increasing rate, our roles as recruiters are becoming more difficult (and more valuable!). Modern Recruiters must understand that talent shortage is not a ‘fad’ — talent shortage will be our eternal ‘norm’.

Many of us recruiters have realised that relying on job boards and our out-of-date candidate database is no longer a winning strategy; instead, we need to proactively engage with people who aren’t job searching, with the ultimate goal of converting them into active candidates. As a result, we’ve been looking ‘over the fence’ at our friends in the Marketing Industry (who are conversion experts) to learn what they do and to apply their strategies and tactics to our own industry.

At Rectxt, we are guided by the fundamental philosophy that Candidates Are Consumers and we’re on a mission to empower individual recruiters to be able to think and act like marketers. But before you can ‘walk the walk’ you need to know how to ‘talk the talk’, so we created this Recruitment Marketing 101 Glossary that defines the most common terms found in Recruitment Marketing:

Call To Action (a.k.a CTA): An image or line of text that prompts your candidates to take action such as to apply for a job, respond to a message, or click a link.

Candidate Conversion: Similar to marketers converting ‘leads’ into customers, candidate conversion focuses on converting passive candidates into active candidates.

Candidate Engagement: How actively and how often a candidate interacts with your digital communication and recruitment marketing content. The higher your candidate engagement, the better.

Candidate Experience (CX): The collective result of ALL the interactions you have with candidates in the recruitment marketing and hiring process. Providing a great CX should be a top priority for a recruiter.

Candidate journey: The summary of all touch points that a candidate will have with an organisation or recruiter from initial Awareness through to eventual Hire (and all stages in between). See below:

Content Marketing: The process of developing and sharing relevant, valuable, and engaging content to your talent network with the goal of acquiring new candidates or converting passive candidates into active candidates. Typical content shared by recruiters are job postings, blogs, articles, tweets, industry events etc. For example, sharing this blog with your network is considered content marketing — start now! ;)

Candidate Personas: Similar to ‘buyer personas’ in Marketing, these are a semi-fictional representation of your ideal candidate for a specific job requisition (skills, attributes, experience, location, interests, likes, dislikes, personality etc).

Candidate Relationship Management (CRM): Specialized software for recruiters to manage and nurture relationships with their entire talent network (usually organised into talent pools). Not to be confused with an Applicant Tracking System (ATS) that only focuses on active candidates who are going through an interview process.

Curated content: content that has been handpicked as the best on a specific subject or topic and delivered in an organised way to your candidate network. You should always make sure that you are sending interesting and relevant content (articles, blogs, links etc) that targets specific candidates or talent pools.

Employer Brand: the term commonly used to describe the reputation of an employer, and its value proposition to its employees, as opposed to its more general corporate brand reputation and value proposition to customers. (

Employer Value Proposition (EVP): Describes the unique mix of characteristics (e.g compensation, benefits, work environment, culture) of an employer in return for the skills, capabilities and experiences an employee brings to the organization.

Inbound Marketing: a strategy that focused on attracting candidates through relevant and helpful digital content and adding value at every stage of a candidate journey through channels like blogs, articles, white papers, social media etc (NOT job boards and job posting advertising which are known as Outbound Marketing).

Impression: The number of views on a piece of shared content or website. The more impressions that you get on your curated content from your talent network, the higher your level of engagement (which is a good thing!)

Influencers: Key people in an industry that are well known and trusted for their expertise in a specific area. Partnering with influences can be a great strategy to increase a brand’s legitimacy and authority in an industry.

Nurture: Using marketing tactics such as Inbound Marketing via multiple touch points to build relationships with people in your talent network, and to encourage them to move to the next stage of a candidate journey. Nurturing your network has become a critical task for the Modern Recruiter.

Passive Candidates: a.k.a ‘leads’, these are people who are not actively job searching but who are open to building relationships with recruiters and hearing about interesting job opportunities. These are the best candidates and Recruitment Marketing is all about converting these candidates into active candidates.

Recruitment Marketing: Borrowed from the Marketing Industry, these are the strategies and tactics an organization or recruiter uses to find, attract, engage and nurture talent before they apply for a job.

Recruitment Marketing Automation: Software platforms and technologies for recruiters to more effectively engage with their talent network on multiple channels online (email, social media, career sites, etc). by automating repetitive tasks (such as job marketing ‘drip’ campaigns, chat bots etc).

Social Recruiting: Using social media (Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter etc) to find and attract target candidates, and to promote your company’s or client’s employer value and job opportunities to them.

Talent Pools/Pipelines: A database or place made up of top candidates (passive and active) that are organised into virtual groups by skill sets, domains, positions etc in preparation for upcoming job requisitions.

Talent Network: a.k.a Candidate Network: All candidates (passive and active) that a recruiter has some form of relationship with.

Touch Point: Any form of intentional and meaningful communication to a specific candidate, or group of candidates within your talent network.

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