Your association’s online career center was in need of some work. So you studied website traffic patterns. You refreshed some older content and created (or found someone to create) some new career development articles and videos. You reorganized the portal so that top resources are easier to find, and the overall user experience is better.
You’ve given your online career center a fantastic makeover. What are you going to do next?
You’re going to tell everyone about it!
Unfortunately, just because you know about the work you’ve done to improve your career center doesn’t mean others do, too. And if your online career center had fallen into serious decline and caused members to write it off as a useful resource, you’re now going to have to put in some more work to convince them to come back and give it another chance.
Fortunately, marketing a career center is often easier than improving one. You’ve done the hard work of updating and reorganizing content. Now you get to talk about why it’s great, and who doesn’t like to brag about a project you’re proud of?
Here are five tips for marketing your new and improved online career center to members and job seekers:
- Add an announcement about the improvement to an existing e-newsletter or upcoming publication. Because people in your association typically don’t reference your career center as often as your main website or an association-wide publication, career center updates earn more attention when they are combined with another association communication.
- Promote the career center improvements via social media to get in front of a wide variety of users. Potential members, students and other industry stakeholders are very likely checking out your pages on Facebook and LinkedIn, your Twitter and Instagram feed, your Tumblr, your Quora page, and so forth, in an effort to get to know your association and familiarize themselves with all it can offer them. Show off your redesigned career center – or the part(s) of it you have improved – with a series of posts that highlight how an item has improved. Use photos, or better yet screen share videos, to demonstrate how to navigate the improvements and how to use new tools or features. Assign a staff member to pay close attention to any comments or questions about these posts and respond in a timely manner.
- In a similar vein, if your association has a white label/private post about your career center improvements, spread the word there. Include the same screen shots and/or videos you’ve collected for use on social media. If your website has a members’ only section, your association’s discussion boards are the perfect place to post screen grabs of those exclusive sections along with an explanation of how they add extra value to your membership offering.
- Host an “open house” via webinar or, if appropriate, in-person demonstration to showcase your new features in real time. This is an especially great option for members who used to take advantage of your career center but have since been turned off from it. for some reason (delete this). An open house conjures up a welcoming, cordial atmosphere that subtly asks for a second chance. It’s similar to the social media idea above. However, if you host a video or in-person “open house,” require registration so your association has a reason to collect attendees’ information. Then, your membership team can later use this info to follow up with attendees to further offer assistance using the new online career center, or to solicit employer listings and ads.
- Reach out to a handful of engaged members and ask them to test drive your online career center’s improvements, then ask them to talk with their networks about those new features. Collect some (positive) quotes from them to use alongside your written career center promotions. Ask them to record short (30 seconds or less) video testimonials that you can post to your social media accounts. Word-of-mouth is still one of the most powerful marketing tools available, so use your built-in network of members to spread the word.
Bonus! Don’t be afraid to do a little bragging. Send a press release to industry publications, local career assistance organizations and local municipalities that promote your progress or improvements to your online career center over time. These organizations will be interested that your association is working to make it easier to connect individual talent with outstanding employers, as well as to help passive job seekers stay on top of their professional skills until they’re ready to make their next career move.
Have we missed a tactic that has worked for your association when promoting a career center or other career resources? Let us know in the comments!