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When I started my first job in social media, flash mobs were all the rage. Seriously, there were flash mobs for everything. Proposals, music videos, puppies and of course a ton of marketing.

What made flash mobs great was obvious. They had an element of surprise and delight. Great music. Happy people were dancing. It was memorable. But after a hundred YouTube videos, we were all feeling a little Ariana Grande about it all: Thank You, Next.

10 years down the road, flash mobs are the same shit, different day. New Yorkers will not even break stride if one breaks out in Times Square; they’re that common. It’s like wearing a perm, a tracksuit and an MC Hammer t-shirt to a happy hour. The style is played out, for now at least.

[Don’t @ me about tracksuits making a comeback. I’m against it.]

So why are your candidate outreach tactics so played out? 

What worked 5 years ago isn’t working now. Hell, what worked 5 months ago isn’t working now because companies and candidates are coming to alignment on at least one thing: Best-in-class does not mean best for you.

What do I mean?

Well, big companies realize that if they take off-the-shelf candidate experience tactics, they’ll get sub-par candidates who don’t fit their culture or can’t deliver on the work they need.

On the other hand, it’s a candidate-driven market. The best people want to work for the best, and you are not the best just because you’re a Fortune 500 anymore. Some candidates don’t care about best-in-class, they care about great experiences and doing work that matters. Even if it’s not their passion, they still want a little R-E-S-P-E-C-T. If you are a Fortune 500, that means the message has to change if you’re looking for innovative talent to take a risk on a household name.

While we can still jam out to a great Aretha Franklin song from the ’60s, your old school candidate experience tactics are completely played out. It’s about time you try something you haven’t tried before.

Here are some ideas that won’t cost you a ton of money but can make a real difference in your candidate experience.

3 Candidate Experience Tactics You Probably Haven’t Tried Before

  1. Upgrade your automation. If you’re still sending automated emails you’ve never read before, there’s a serious problem on hand. If you’re not sending actual content and automation at all? Red flag. But if it makes you feel any better, you’re not alone. According to SmashFly’s latest Recruitment Marketing Benchmarks Report, only 5% of companies are actually engaging with their talent network with actual content. Do that. It’s an easy way to stand out, and all you have to do is write like a human.
  2. Write job postings from the hiring manager’s perspective. Tailor your job postings to be one part skills and one part introduction to the personality of the hiring manager. Coach hiring managers to write a description of a day in the life and the team, then get to the nitty-gritty of the skills. Candidates want to connect with a person and be convinced. Do that.
  3. Let leaders tackle Glassdoor. I can hear the collective gasp. We all have to stop panicking about letting other people have real conversations about work. Here’s what I recommend, and I learned this from a friend at a Fortune 500 that is doing this today. She has one representative from each department who meets with the collective once a month. They sit down and review responses to harsh posts, but most importantly, they actually listen. They take what they hear on Glassdoor and address it. By responding to the person’s review with what they’re doing to fix the problems, that becomes the themes of the page. Transparency at its best.

Do you really want to stand out?

Here’s the bottom line: Abandon the checklists and analyze your voice. Figure out who you are and what matters to your people. What makes them stop scrolling.

Make that into a campaign, auto-tweeting job feed be damned.

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