How do you get social recruiting right? I have read a lot of posts on the topic, heard a lot of presentations and had a whole host of conversations about what is best practice. The problem is that what works for one company, or one target audience will not necessarily work for the next one. There are plenty of people peddling the magic formula and showing the data that just proves that you have to do it “this way” to make it work.

One of the hardest things for people is getting started. There is so much talk of branding and the need to get it right, of the need for engagement and perfect posting, that it’s scary to get started. What I have learned is that there is no sure-fire route to success. You need to be prepared for lots of trial and error. Testing, being clear on what you want as an outcome, and being prepared to learn lots of lessons from heroic failures.

One myth I’m really not a fan of is that you should try a channel at a time. The most common recommended starting point is LinkedIn. the advice being get to know this arena well, get it working for you before you move on to the next channel,maybe Twitter or Facebook. My advice is to jump in to social. Go look at every channel. Make some connections. look at what other people are doing and ask for help. Once you start with your own accounts, you get a feel for how the channels work, and you can start introducing your recruiting accounts.

What works for me is getting the business on board with what you are doing. Your colleagues in the business are the best place to start when it comes to research, or for agency recruiters, your candidate base. Don’t try to second guess what channels or content will work best. Talk to everyone about the channels they use, groups, pages and places they frequent. They will guide you on content they are willing to share and contribute to, and will form your brand advocates. It really is about collaboration and experimentation. Being social with your own team, before bringing your outside audience.They will know what would work for them, and what will work for them will work for others.

When you have a list of ideas start trying them. Explore every possibility and understand that some of what you do is not going to work or give you the return you were expecting. It is going to be a question of test practice.” Do, review, then do again. Some will work, some won’t, but find out for yourself and work out the route that works best for you.