Responses from Customers to Automated Follow-up Campaigns

Created: Sep 04, 2015 09:19AM PDT      Updated: Dec 09, 2015 11:06AM PST
Q: I'm worried about spamming people with messaging. The default automated follow-up campaigns in TalentBin seem overly aggressive to me.

A: The reality is t
hat persistence pays. Research has shown time and time again that the longer the campaign is, the more likely you are to get a response. With passive candidate recruiting, just getting into a productive conversation with someone can open a lot of doors. Yes, the job market for top talent is more competitive than it's ever been, leading to an air of entitlement among some hot shot engineers. But most people don't mind getting messaging, as long as you've made some effort to match them with a relevant opportunity.

Even if he or she is not interested in the current position at the time, they may be more likely to think of you first next time they're in the job market and, what's more, they may know other well-qualified candidates with similar expertise whom they would be willing to refer to you for your current opening.

Passive candidates are busy. They have full-time gigs and side projects and a million things competing for their attention (including all of your fellow recruiters). They may see your email on their phone. They may even click on your jobs page URL to learn more about the position, but (frustratingly!), they occasionally stop short of actually replying, even if they are interested. 

What we've seen is that most passive candidates reply favorably to persistent messaging so long as it's targeted. What do we mean by targeted messaging?
  • You've done some research to match their interests with the position.
  • You've taken into consideration where they are currently and how this new opening fits into their career trajectory. Build a narrative around this.
  • You've sufficiently answered the "what's in it for me?" question. This could mean many different things besides just base salary or stock options: an opportunity to work on a new technology, to get in on the ground floor, to have more say, and a way to directly impact things, etc.
These are actual quotes from emails received from passive candidates replying to subsequent automated follow-up messages in a targeted campaign:
  • "Sorry for not getting back sooner!"
  • "Sorry I haven't responded."
  • "I applaud your research and persistence."
Now, passive candidates won't always reply favorably. However, the most honest replies can also be educational.

What do candidates hate most?
They don't like it when a recruiter sends overly generic messaging, when it's obvious that the recruiter has done little-to-no work to at least minimally qualify them as a viable for the role. They hate it when an agency recruiter sends a generic message about an "exciting opportunity" for an unnamed client:

 "Ask yourself this, have you ever tried to sell a developer a job without telling him or her the name of the company? Have you ever requested to talk over the phone to relay the details?" - actual candidate reply

We asked one of our engineers, who is inundated with offers from recruiters, for some additional feedback on what recruiters could do better. Here's what he had to say:

"Some of the things I really dislike about most of the emails that I get from recruiters:
  • If it's an agency they don't name the company.
  • They don't say why I'm a good fit.
  • They don't say why they think the company is a good fit for me (some have generic messages about impact, etc. but not personalization).
  • They don't talk about their engineering team and/or technical challenges.
  • They call out obvious/easy to find information (e.g. "we just raised this much") instead of information that is not obvious see.
  • They say "I don't know if you got my previous message" when they are instrumenting opens and clicks (I think this is just so that I pay closer attention to click/open tracking and what people use :P))
"In other words, IMHO all is comes down to personalization and excitement. If I don't think that you spent 5 minutes reading my profile then why should I spend 5 minutes talking to you? If your company, product, team, and challenges pique my interest then it would be easy to persuade me to do a quick call."

Keep in mind, flat out rejections are also opportunities. "No" doesn't always necessarily mean "no" when it comes to passive candidate recruiting. Why? Well, think about it: the candidate has taken some time to send you a reply. This is an opening. The best salespeople know this, and they'll come back with another reply in order to strengthen the relationship, if not for the purpose of closing on the current opportunity then to make sure that they're top-of-mind the next time the candidate enters the job market.

Consider creating a "Not Now Template" to send out to anyone who writes back with a "no, thanks" but who otherwise still appears to be a viable candidate for the future. Short and sweet is best:




Thanks for the reply. Understand the timing isn't right for you right now. Let's connect on LinkedIn, and please keep me in mind should your situation change.

If you ever wish to chat, drop me a line or reach me at {!USER_PHONE} anytime.





phone: {!USER_PHONE}


+++++++++++++++More about {!COMPANY_NAME} +++++++++++++++


Send the candidate a request to connect and add to a drip marketing campaign for automated follow-up in 3-6 months.


First Impressions
Because first impressions are so important, the most critical component to successfully recruiting passive candidates is crafting a winning first outreach message.

Be sure to join us for Webinar #8 to learn how to knock it out of the park every time!:

Webinar #8: First Impressions are Everything - Writing a Perfect 1st Email

Q​uestions? Thoughts? Either c​ontact your Product Specialist, reach out to us at anytime, or leave a comment below!
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