September 11, 2018

What is Programmatic Job Advertising?

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Alicia Little
Marketing Director
September 11, 2018

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What is programmatic advertising?

Programmatic advertising is the buying, placement, and optimization of ads performed by software, rather than people. It allows advertisers to target their ideal demographic across the web, and keeps them from overspending on clicks that don’t convert with automated bidding processes.

It works like this: The buyer plugs into an automated system for buying ad space, like a stock exchange. He or she enters demographic details, known as rules, about the ideal customer and how many of them he or she wants to reach. Then the software takes over.

Programmatic gathers browsing data and uses complex algorithms to show people the right ads, at the right time, in the right place, based on their likelihood to engage with the advertisement.

How is programmatic job advertising different than traditional programmatic advertising?

Programmatic job advertising works in exactly the same way as programmatic consumer advertising. But instead of placing ads for products and services, technology is deployed to automate the buying and placement of job openings through networks of job-related websites on a performance-based model (such as pay-per-click or pay-per-applicant).

The process of programmatic advertising for recruitment is simple:

  1. The recruiter imports their job content from their ATS or career site.
  2. The recruiter sets their total budget allocation, as well as what they’re willing to pay for each click or application.
  3. The recruiter sets “rules” based on their business objectives, such as demographics of the target applicant, number of applies they want for a particular job or job group, and budget.
  4. The recruiter hits the “buy” button, and the programmatic software takes care of the rest.

Before programmatic, the process for buying job ads was labor intensive and notoriously inefficient. Recruiters would have to research the best on-or-offline space to place a job ad, engage in an administration-heavy process of discovering pricing and availability from multiple publishers or vendors, place orders, and manually load the copy into the ad server. And all of these processes took place before the job ad had even been distributed to potential candidates. Let’s not even begin to talk about all of the manual processes involved in measuring and understanding ROI (that’s for another blog post)!

With programmatic, advertisers can buy job ads the way they might buy something on A few mouse clicks and they’re done with the heavy lifting.

But why should recruiters care about using programmatic job advertising?

Put simply, the benefits that programmatic has shown in the consumer space are similar to the benefits we are seeing inside the recruitment space. Specifically, cost-effective access to a large and hyper-targeted number of job-seekers across all content and devices.

The business case is compelling. Take a look at the following benefits:

Precision Targeting: Since intelligent software makes better ad placement decisions than people, programmatic allows for accurate and successful audience targeting. For recruiters, that means smartly engineering the allocation of advertising dollars from your targeted recruitment strategy towards critical and hard-to-fill vacancies that need applications. In other words:

  • You reduce the number of jobs that have too many applies.
  • You reduce the number of jobs that have too few applies.
  • You spend less money to generate a quality apply.
  • You get more bang for your advertising buck.

Optimized Conversions: Historically, recruiters contracted with a handful of publishers to run job ads. These contracts were typically for a fixed budget amount over a fixed period of time. Programmatic surpasses any one job board, publisher, or job site. The algorithm ensures that each publisher used is optimized to produce the highest conversion rate for each job posting.

Efficiency: Programmatic is capable of making “in-flight,” real-time adjustments. This means that ads are optimized instantaneously and continuously, rather than quarterly or annually when the performance of those ads is reviewed. Since humans cannot compete with the real-time analytical capabilities of software, programmatic provides immediate cost savings and a higher return on investment (ROI).

Value: Programmatic is supported by a performance-based pricing structure which facilitates an increased ROI. And, since automated processes decrease the labor-intensive resources usually associated with ad-buying operations, recruiters are freed up to focus on creative and value-added activities.

The fact is, digital marketers in the consumer space see incredible results when they let data and software handle the buying and placing of advertisements. There is every reason to believe that recruiters could achieve the same results. And that, in a nutshell, is why programmatic job advertising represents one of the most significant developments in our industry.

Download our whitepaper, Programmatic Recruitment Advertising. The Better Way to Promote Job Ads Online, to get an in-depth look at how you can use programmatic to strengthen your job advertising.

You can also check out our webinar on the fundamentals of programmatic job advertising below:



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