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With 2016 nearly at its close, we’ve started to turn our attention towards upcoming trends as they relate to video content. This year, we saw many big and small brands try their hand at branded content to help grow their online profiles and connect with their audiences on a deeper emotional level. This trend was twofold, as it helped push skeptical brands into the deep end of video content, while helping them grow their businesses at the same time.
One trend that appears to be on the rise is the recruitment video, which is essentially a piece of branded content aimed at prospective employees who want to learn more about the organization’s day-to-day operation.

Video is the best way to reach new graduates and other millennials.

Many corporate brands are targeting their recruitment campaigns towards millennials – which come in the form of new graduates – and professionals with (typically) less than five years of work experience, as they have their eyes on a long-term career. The barrier they face is the millennial work culture, which has recently resulted in younger employees jumping from job to job instead of staying put.
This might be related to a lack of transparency, as bigger corporations have generally been tight-lipped about what it’s really like to work for them, fearing they may push talented individuals to competitors. The change in trend is almost a rebranding for the recruitment industry, as many brands are undergoing a long-awaited change in the way they attract talent. With that in mind, they recognize the easiest way to communicate with millennials is through video.
An eMarketer study proves that millennials are one of the most active viewers of video content, especially as it relates to brands. In 2015, 80 per cent of millennials consider video content when researching a purchase decision, and 60 per cent of millennials prefer to watch a company video over reading a company newsletter.
These stats alone prove millennials prefer videos to reading when it comes to purchase decisions – why wouldn’t it be the same when it comes to employment decisions?
As a recent graduate, I’ve applied to many jobs in the last few years. The problem with many brands is they use corporate language and sound robotic – which is a huge turnoff to potential applicants. The few times I came across a brand that had a video showcasing their culture, I found myself instantly more excited about the prospective idea of even applying for the role. To put it simply – video forces brands to humanize themselves and become less robotic, making them easier to understand and differentiate from one company to the next.

The success of branded content has lead to immediate adaptation.

The recruitment video didn’t come out of nowhere. It had a minor stint in 2014, took a bit of a hiatus last year and seemingly returned to full swing in 2016, which could be related to the explosion of branded content.
Our company had the opportunity to create several pieces of branded content for companies both big and small this year, and it could be argued that they’re the most interesting pieces of content to create.
If you’re unfamiliar with branded content, it’s basically a story revolving around the physical and emotional benefits a consumer experiences when using a particular product. Branded content is usually much longer than a standard advertisement and is all about creating a connection. In a sense, it’s almost like a mini film or documentary as you don’t always know what you’re going to get until you’re in editing, which is where it all really comes to life.
Branded content been extremely successful at creating a deeper connection with its audiences and has lead to different adaptations within the last few years. With this is mind, it’s no surprise that recruitment is a relevant story to tell, especially in an industry that hasn’t seen much innovation in recent years.
If you’ve seen a recruitment video recently you might know what I’m talking about, as many companies have used the “day in the life” format to successfully show potential applicants what it’s like to work for them on a day-to-day basis. Shopify took it a step further and shared insight into its culture and growth and team building opportunities.

Video could allow recruitment to enter unexplored areas.

When we think about the technology that 2016 brought to the video industry, we enter into the augmented and virtual reality conversation. While it might be crazy to suggest now, it’s possible that we could see this type of technology wiggle its way into recruitment videos to give potential hires a true glimpse of the environment they’d be working in.
While still years away, this technology opens new lines of thinking for filmmakers creating videos in the recruitment space. It seems naïve to think we’ve uncovered all of the possible avenues for sharing corporate culture, transparency, and other elements of a business to prospective hires. I’m not one to make recruitment predictions, but I am one to make predictions when it comes to video content. In 2016, we saw several brands expand their video horizon and incorporate more creative ways to deliver a message, and new technology and viewing trends lead us to believe that this is only the beginning of the recruitment video.
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Chris Stasiuk

Author Chris Stasiuk

Chris is commercial director and founder of SVG, a Toronto based video content agency.

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