Why employers should use targeted advertising to reach college and university students and recent graduates

Posted February 05, 2016 by
Small Interview Room


Since the 1950’s, employers who wanted to hire the best and brightest college and university students and recent graduates sent their hiring managers and recruiters to interview on-campus. Organizations wanting to hire dozens, hundreds, or even thousands would have teams of employees on the road for weeks and even months conducting interviews in rooms which can best be described as glorified broom closets. The National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) recently reported that the average cost of hiring a student through on-campus recruiting is now more than $3,600. More and more employers are realizing that there must be a more efficient, effective way to hire their next generation of leaders.

At College Recruiter, we believe that every student and recent graduate deserves a great career. I founded the organization 25 years ago and we’ve evolved significantly over the years. One of the interactive, recruitment media solutions that we introduced a couple of years ago has seen tremendous success as it is designed to get the right opportunity in front of the right candidate at the right time.

Advertising is typically delivered either based upon the content being read by the candidate or by the candidate’s demographics. The former approach is how Google delivers ads: you get ads related to the content on the page you’re reading. The problem with that approach is that people who are reading accounting-related information such as whether their home office expenses are tax deductible are rarely the candidates that an accounting firm would want to hire. In fact, they’re the last people that accounting firm would want to hire. The latter approach is how Facebook delivers ads: you get ads related to your demographics. The problem with that approach is that the employer’s ad may appear when you’re watching a video about a cute kitten. At that moment, you’re not going to be interested in engaging with an employer about a career opportunity.

What we did is combine the two approaches. We create a list of candidates who meet the employer’s desired target audience based upon factors such as school, geography, major, year of graduation, and diversity. We then deliver ads to those people when they’re on pages which are career-related. For example, we’ll deliver the ad for our Big Four accounting firm client to an African-American college student who is in her junior year of an accounting program at NYU when she’s reading an article about finance.

In a nutshell, we’ve created an advertising solution for employers that enables College Recruiter to deliver the right opportunity to the right candidate at the right time.

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