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How to build your employer brand

Reading Time: 8 minutes

Here’s how to build your employer brand and get internal buy-in for key employer branding and recruitment marketing projects. This is an excerpt from our new ebook, Getting Buy-In for Your Employee Story Project, The Ultimate Guide to Employer Branding and Recruitment Marketing ROI.

Employer branding and recruitment marketing is hard enough. There’s a thousand little things you need to do to get in front of and influence candidates, all of which matter in the moment, and also add up over time. And it never stops. Your LifeAt channels need to be started, filled, or fostered. Glassdoor reviews need responses back to those disappointed with their employee experience. You’re tasked with recruiting more women leaders, but they aren’t applying. Long applications need to be filled out in order for your company to be recognized as a fantastic place to work. You’re collaborating with hiring managers, DEI leaders, HR, and more, taking on their challenges as your own and trying to solve them using what you know. 

And, as if that wasn’t a big enough job, you also need to prove to others why employer branding and recruitment marketing matters to your company. 

Your leadership needs to understand how your work, and building the employer brand, impacts profitability, productivity, and contributes to culture. 

It’s more than proving your own importance and justifying your job existence. You need leadership to understand the value of your work so you can get funding for projects and tools that will help you do your job to the best of your ability. And, you need money for those things.

Getting funding for projects and tools

Hey, we’re all about being scrappy and doing the best you can with what you have. But, if you are undertaking an employer branding problem like lack of recognition, correcting candidate perception, or building pipelines of talent essential to your company’s growth and survival, you need to be realistic about just how much you can really do on a limited budget and with a small team. You don’t want to work so hard for so long only to have pushed the needle a little bit (or worse, quit before you see results because you’re burned out and fed up). 

Want to capture stories & bring your culture to life?

Data you can use 

Quantifying the cost of your problem is important to get leadership attention, and for them to realize your problems are their problems: they can’t do their job as effectively when turnover runs rampant, for example. You want them to care enough so that they want the problem solved, too. Then, they’ll be a champion of the solutions you propose. 

So, how to build your employer brand? And, how do you quantify the impact your work has on your company’s ability to attract the right talent, time to hire, and retention?  

There’s math you can do, using your company numbers that will make the financial impact of your work real for those you need to influence. 

Setting the right cultural expectations for candidates is key to recruit employees who will thrive in your environment. Through effective and truthful recruitment marketing, employer branding and culture content, your work impacts quality of hire and other meaningful HR metrics. 

Look at the cost of turnover, how much a vacant seat for a specific role costs the company every day it goes unfilled (ties to your time to hire metric), and what disengagement costs. 

Your HR department should be able to help, but if you don’t have these numbers available to you, here are some industry stats you can use: 


  • The cost of replacing an individual employee can range from one-half to two times the employee’s annual salary (and that’s a conservative estimate). Gallup


  • On average, 17.2 percent of an organization’s workforce is actively disengaged. Gallup
  • Disengaged employees have 37% higher absenteeism, 18% lower productivity and 15% lower profitability. When that translates into dollars, you’re looking at the cost of 34% of a disengaged employee’s annual salary, or $3,400 for every $10,000 they make. Gallup, LinkedIn

Employer branding and recruitment marketing as a solution

Now that you’ve quantified how much your people problems are costing your company, apply how investing in recruitment marketing and employer branding can help. 

According to LinkedIn’s Ultimate List of Employer Brand stats, a great employer brand results in: 

  • 28 percent reduction in turnover 
  • 50 percent cost-per-hire reduction
  • 50 percent more qualified applicants
  • 1-2 faster time to hire

Interested in capturing stories from your team members?

Great employer branding and recruitment marketing increases awareness, engagement, candidate conversions, and ultimately, quality of hire. Investing in content to fill your channels and further engage your audience moves the needle on all your talent attraction methods. 

Employee stories in particular are sought after insights that will impact these metrics: 

  • Candidates trust the company’s employees three times more than other company statements as sources of credible information on what it’s like to work there.  Edelman
  • 52% of candidates seek out the company’s sites and social media to learn more about an employer.  LinkedIn

Employee stories are the simplest employer branding concept to “explain” to leadership

In its most basic form, you’re asking to create content that will communicate your culture. Most people have seen a “culture video.” And, you can show examples of the types of companies whose culture most matches yours. That’s an easy way to get your leadership envisioning the final output. 

But, for recruitment marketing efforts, it’s not just one video you need. It’s a suite of content, like a library, a video series, or campaign assets. It’s an ongoing storytelling project. 

Your leadership understands that stories can educate, influence, emotionally impact, and entertain an audience. While its power is acknowledged, using it as a way to accomplish business objectives is less clear. Storytelling has become a corporate buzzword and lost its meaning, because of how accessible and ubiquitous the concept of a story is. 

Sometimes, leaders can get behind the concept of employee storytelling without much explanation. But, for those who need to understand how “storytelling” turns into tangible results for your company, you have an advantage.

Want to get started building your business case for your employer branding project? Download our ebook that has all the steps and data on the ROI of employer branding and recruitment marketing, and the keys to getting buy-in!

Learn more: Download the ebook