You don’t need us to tell you how important your employer brand is in the battle to attract and retain top talent (but we will anyway). It brings people in, helps people stay longer, boosts the motivation of current employees and improves financial performance. So yeah. Well worth the effort then.
As the smart, savvy recruitment professional that you are, you probably know how your employer brand should look in images and social media posts. But have you considered how it should talk? That’s a big part of the puzzle and a massive opportunity to strengthen your employer brand and bring in more of those juicy benefits.
Here’s what makes a good brand voice:
The point of your employer brand is to give candidates a taste of the company culture. So, your tone of voice? It needs to reflect who you are as an organisation. Ask yourself, “If my employer brand were a person, who would that person be”? For example, if your employer brand is structured, serious and educated, a sense of decorum and formality should come through. If you operate with a flat hierarchy and have ping-pong tables instead of meeting rooms, your tone should feel more relaxed and energetic. What you shouldn’t do? Try to be relatable by talking like your target audience. That’s a mistake lots of brands make (and that awkward cool-guy English teacher you had once). Trying to talk like a teenager when you’re not a teenager is the fastest way to evoke that “What’s hanging, fellow kids?” cringe-fest.
So, talk like you, but in a way that your ideal candidates will easily understand. That means thinking about their comfortable level of vocab and sticking with that. Keep sentences short and wield punctuation for understanding, not to be slavishly correct. To give you an idea of how simple your writing needs to be, newspapers aim for a reading age of 12 – your text should be there too, or ideally, younger. This has a double-whammy bonus of making it more inclusive for people with English as a second language, lower literacy or learning disabilities.
There are heaps of employer brands out there getting all this bang on – here are a couple of our favourites.
Bumble is a dating app newbee (Get it??) – and a pretty massive success story. They use Weirdly in their recruitment process to engage potential candidates, so we’re lucky enough to get an inside look at their employer brand. We love it for two reasons. It’s super-consistent and has really been leaning into their ‘bumbliness’ – bee puns galore! This gave candidates a taste of that fun, quirky culture and meant only those who click with the employer brand will bother going further down the recruitment funnel. As the first line on the intro page of their values quiz says, “When you work at a company that mirrors your personal values, you thrive.”
MECCA is an employer brand we’ve been admiring from across the room. The writing sounds like a real person wrote it: smart, positive, and empowering. Just like the people you’d expect to see behind a MECCA counter.
It’s clearly aimed at people who wear and wholeheartedly love make-up, but also want to be doing something meaningful and feel like they’re working for a company that actually cares about their development.
MECCA taps into this while not taking themselves too seriously.
“Give everyone an A…(llowance)” is how they introduce the perks section on their career site, where (as you might have guessed) they describe their employee discount and product allowance offering.
Most importantly, MECCA’s employer brand tone draws a line in the sand, saying, “This is who we are.” It won’t connect to everyone but for those they’re talking to, it’ll make them feel excited to be part of the crew.
Pretty much every self-help book ever written has some form of this truism – be yourself. The same goes when you're creating candidate experiences with writing that really connects. Being authentic, speaking (through writing) like a real human and choosing words that tell your candidates you really understand them helps your candidates engage more deeply.
In the context of attraction, inclusion and engagement, your tone of voice is as important as the images on your career site.
They'll help the right candidates feel aligned with you, the whole way through your recruitment process. It means you’ll find your people – and those are the ones who’ll be the driving force (and awesome representatives) of your organisation.
Find out how Weirdly is helping bring some of the world’s biggest employer brands to life – book a demo.