Everyone wants to hire high-quality drivers. Of course, that’s what makes it such a difficult thing to do. The best drivers have a dozen carriers to choose from and you’re in the middle of a rat race with them. You’re competing to hire those drivers; the drivers aren’t competing to work for you. If you’re tired of losing the hiring game to the carrier down the road, it’s time to take a hard look at your marketing efforts. Do your ads pass the Google test?
Evaluating Your Advertisement: The Google Test
Chances are, the drivers you want are seeing multiple ads for driving positions a day. You might look at your ad and think to yourself, “Hey, this is pretty sharp.” Your potential hires see your ad and most likely scrolls right by it. Put yourself in their shoes. How does your ad stack-up to others? You can find out using the Google test.
Here’s how the Google Test works:
- Write down the top three reasons a driver should drive for your company.
- Google a phrase that you think a potential hire would search to find a job you’re offering (i.e. “OTR driving positions near me”, “LTL driving jobs in Muskegon, MI).
- Look at the top 3 to 5 search results that come up (if you’re one of them, congratulations are in order, but select a few that aren’t you). Write down three things from each ad that the company lists as a reason to drive with them.
- If you have any reasons in common with any of the ads you chose, you fail the Google test.
Stand Out From the Crowd: Be A Purple Cow
The Google test shows how much you stand out from your competitors. Are you offering a unique pitch to drivers for why they should sign-on with you? Or do you sound like just another carrier? If you want to hire the best drivers, you have to offer something unique.
We subscribe to Seth Godin’s philosophy of the Purple Cow to uniquely position yourself from your competition. If I’m driving from Cleveland, Ohio to Chicago, Illinois tomorrow, I’ll certainly pass a few farms. At those farms, I’ll see a bunch of cows that all look the same and none of them will grab my attention. However, if one of those cows were purple, I would certainly take notice. I’d slow down, safely pull off the road, and take a picture because I’d be so tickled. Long story short, you want to be the purple cow and turn heads. You want your ad to stand out from the competition so you can attract more candidates.
Improving Your Next Recruitment Ad: Start With The Why
It’s safe to assume you won’t pass the Google test on the first try. Few carriers do. After all, it’s difficult to become a purple cow, and they’re aren’t many of them. That’s what makes them so special. However, once you realize your advertisement does nothing to separate you from the competition, it’s time to change it.
Too many advertisements and pitches start with the what. “We have a dedicated lane from Madison, WI to Cincinnati, OH.” That’s a what, and it does next to nothing to convince someone to drive for you. Instead, focus on the why. “Are you tired of missed paychecks and driving all Sunday? Our company offers minimum weekly earnings and every weekend home.” That’s a why, and it’s much more likely to strike a chord with your candidates. Purple cows are why statements, not what statements.
The Next Steps Towards Hiring a Fleet of All-Stars
Understanding the theory of the purple cow and starting your ads with the “why” is only the beginning. You need to study-up a bit more in order to pass the Google test next time around (that’s right - this blog comes with a homework assignment).
In the next few days, read this article on the power of driver personas and how to use them to create compelling ads. Then, get to work on your next advertisement. Make it compelling and make it unique to your company. Once you nail it down, give the Google test another go. If you pass it, you’re one step closer to attracting high-quality drivers and one step further from sifting through the dollar-store bin for your next hire.