​Hiring managers have discovered that internet marketing can attract potential customers and new hires.

The present day talent gap forces hiring managers to search for experienced professionals in unexpected places, like social media networks. A Global Online Employment Report from Elance found that demand for online talent continues to surge with mobile development, web programming and content writing professionals lead the pack. For example, content writers and blog writers saw the volume of available jobs increase by 151 percent and 78 percent, respectively, last year.

However, recruiters struggle to find and attract top talent today, and they have taken to the web to cast a wider net. According to a survey conducted by recruitment software company Bullhorn, 98 percent of recruiting professionals used social media channels to find new hires in 2012 – up 4 percent from 2011. When asked which channels provided the most return on investment, approximately 82.6 percent indicated LinkedIn, and that they planned to spend more on the B2B site in 2013 than 2012. Twitter (38.3 percent) and Facebook (37.4 percent) also helped hiring managers locate top talent online last year and will continue to offer assistance moving forward.

Check out one recruitment brand’s review of Brafton’s content marketing service.

While the top three networks (LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook) gave recruiters greater access to job seekers, Bullhorn found that hiring managers used Facebook and Twitter at much lower rates last year than in 2011. This could be a result of Facebook’s privacy changes or Twitter’s real-time pace. Overall, 93 percent of recruiters said LinkedIn helped them place candidates in new roles last year, but how did these professionals connect with top talent? Publishing custom content can help.

Businesses that want to attract top talent can use branded content to tell their companies’ stories. Well-written blog articles show brands’ personalities, history and even trajectory by giving job seekers previews into employers’ corporate cultures. With such a focus on finding the right candidate, hiring managers must think like marketers and realize that job seekers are customers, too. It’s as important to sell the brand, its products and services and people to professionals looking for work, as it is to market goods to prospects on the conversion edge. Content marketing can be effective in both situations, and businesses that realize this will use web content to draw in a variety of leads this year.

Ted Karczewski is an Executive Communications Associate at Brafton. He works to develop his own voice and apply his passions to the evolving world of SEO and content marketing, but he doesn't shy away from writing for fun. After graduating from Suffolk University, Ted used his Communications degree to test out Sports Journalism before Marketing at Brafton.