Recruiter turns Marketer – A #TalentHackers Review




Global M attended the first #TalentHackers event yesterday amongst a sea of people just itching to hear the panel discuss their approaches to hiring. For the most part, these weren’t anything completely new, however for the many who are just starting out, it would definitely give food for thought. Which for all sense and purposes would make this first event kind of fitting.

Some great case studies emerged out of the event, including one involving trips to Las Vegas however “what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas”, so I won’t say any more. In all fairness, that might have been one of the most priciest hacks discussed, which in my mind goes against the growth hacking concepts that gave birth to talent hacking. Something more akin to the type of talent hacking I’ve been thinking of, was Tris Revill’s twitter hack to find ruby developers. It’s not new to perform an x ray search for developers on twitter, using Google/Bing however what was really cool was to set it up to Google alerts. That way, the information then becomes inbound, as developers sign up for twitter, their information comes straight to your mail inbox and you have first move advantage to talk to that developer on the platform.

There was more talk of using twitter to find developers with Driftrock’s case study. Now they owned up and said twitter lead cards have been used for recruitment in the past, true, however they’re approach was very ‘Driftrocky’. Gabriela from Driftrock automated that process by integrating it with one of their own marketing tools, Lead Response, and Workable, a recruitment management software they were using. Of course a neat little hire could be made out of it and I look forward to seeing further results on this approach, and how they adapt & make it better (see no. 3 on the growth hacker manifesto). You can always be sceptical about the use of twitter to make hires, but when it’s inbound CV’s coming to your workflow, it can make for a really useful approach. “Twitter also allows you to be very specific in your targeting, which will make your ads more relevant to candidates, can massively decrease your CPA and improve your conversion rate.”  That’s the top of the funnel sorted, however other bottlenecks of the recruitment process was discussed.

It’s all good and well sourcing developers / other types of talent through twitter, however I live by the motto, quality over quantity. So with that in mind, the next step is to separate the wheat from the chaff. We all know that when hiring for your first 10 or so employees, the right hires make up a key part to getting to the next round of funding. Makeshift’s Nick Marsh talked about how they used events as a way to do this. As developers & a startup, they needed to build a community around their brand. The best way to build any community, online or offline, is through events, thus resulting in a range of developer focused events to not only meet like-minded developers but to then invite them to make something with the Makeshift team. Recruiting by audition is a step that can complement/replace the typical interview stage asking them about their bedroom projects. It also helped elevate the Makeshift brand. Double Whammy!

This brings me to my next point. Steve of Lyst, made an excellent distinction between companies who just sponsor the event and those who speak at it. Hung Lee summed it up perfectly.



If you are looking to speak to engineers, it always best to have them flocking to you after the event. No banner will harness the same amount of attention as the celebrity. This fully reminded me of how entrepreneurs are becoming the tech heroes of our day. This culture dates all the way back to 1184BC with the advent of the Illiad. Richard P Martin, said “the Illiad is about heroes as humans and what constitutes humanity”, and with guys like Mark Zuckerberg quoting the Illiad in his own speeches, entrepreneurs as celebrities is here to stay. Using that in your recruitment strategy, will not only end in a number of people speaking to you, but if the event is as good as your acceptance to speak/sponsor at it, good quality developers to join your team is on the horizon.


Need to find out more about talent hacking?

Here’s a list of resources

Say Hello to the Talent Hacker – Nick Marsh

The Talent Hacker Manifesto – Matt Buckland

Hard Rock Cafe wins award for social recruiting – Bill Boorman

Not using Big Data for Hiring? You may be missing out

One hire every start up needs to make

Download Workable’s startup-hiring guide – Getting from Employee 5 – 50


Images courtesy of Columbia Spectator, Neil Patel


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.