Employer Branding Talent Acquisition

How Startups Recruit with YouTube

In the startup ecosystem, company culture can be a young team’s greatest asset, but amongst the mix of investment funding, cash flow, pivoting, product dev, it is often underutilized. As a startup, it is key to optimize any opportunity to generate buzz while accomplishing objective goals for your company’s growth.

In today’s job market and startup craze, the recruitment process is a great opportunity to develop your organization’s company culture while having fun hiring.


The most viral “HR” YouTube video from last year came not from the recruiting side, but rather, via the self­-termination process, in this hilariously ­creative job resignation video:

With over 17 million views, Marina Shifrin has proven, with some surprisingly ­good dance moves, that YouTube can be an effective tool for generating buzz and accomplishing an objective goal: quitting your job.

How to recruit with YouTube as a startup:

Eventstagram, a London-based social media startup, is leveraging their development team’s growth by creating a YouTube video to outline the job description of their ideal Sysadmin/back­end developer. Dan, CEO of Eventstagram said:

We are always looking for creative ways to take normal business processes, like recruiting and marketing, but with a keen eye on building our corporate culture and having fun doing it. Our marketing manager developed this concept and lyrics with local London music artist to create this track. Our sales team took the song and put it to some footage of some of our work over the past 12 months.

During a young company’s high ­growth stage, it is the executive’s role to look for an effective balance of skill­ set and the ability to grow the company with the right kind of people. Startups need to capitalize on the mobility and agile nature of small teams to push the envelop and get noticed.

Rather than going through traditional methods of dividing PR roles and HR roles, the lean CEO aims to accomplish maximum output with minimum input. HR processes can become rigid for large organizations with much liability to mitigate, so it is the startup’s opportunity to capitalize on this creative vacuum left by corporations with larger pockets.

Eventstagram created this video with consumer­ level software, no budget, and a bit of creativity think outside of the box.

How to leverage your exciting social presence to social recruiting:

In 2013, contests to win the most awesome, most ­coveted job fathomable was a popular trend in viral HR campaigns. These ‘win the best job in the world’ campaigns resonated with millions of people with promises of “working” from paradise locations. Both of these offers utilized video submissions to generate sharable content and magnify the excitement of the candidates amongst their peers. The application of rich media in the HR process proved to be a huge success for the following two companies.

Mindvalley, Malaysian­based online publisher, ran their second recruitment campaign for their Event Management team. Hundreds of video submissions were posted to Youtube seeking offers to jet­set to exotic island resorts and rubbing elbows with the most inspirational leaders in lifestyle, meditation, and business. Mindvalley also emphasizes the company’s corporate culture and encouraged candidates to show their personality in the submission of their 3­ minute video.

Jauntaroo, online travel destination matchmaker, made huge waves with claims of the “The Best Job Around the World” when recruiting for their Chief World Explorer. Jauntaroo did an excellent job of utilizing the existing Youtube platform while continually re­directing viewers back to their website.

The voting process was handled through an internal voting process hosted on the company’s website. This is an important lesson for engaging your audience while creating value to the company through increased site traffic.

What are the 5 goals of using YouTube in recruitment and hiring?

1) Understand the candidate’s personality:

The typical application packet (CV, cover letter, and LinkedIn profile) can tell you a great deal about a candidate objectively, but nothing conveys someone’s personality and fit for a company better then seeing them directly. In a world of increasing non­verbal communication (email, tweets, status updates), YouTube can be the perfect bridge between goals of HR efficiency and creating company culture.

2) Screen candidates through video interviews:

The companies listed above received tens of thousands of video applications, which marked the campaign as a huge success. This successful marketing campaign now lies in the hands of HR to filter and find the ideal applicant. Each of these videos had a good, consumable time limit, all videos had to be 1­3 minutes long. The process of creating a video is itself a good screening tool because of the time commitment involved.

READ MORE: The Benefits of Using Video Interviews for Recruitment

3) Enhance company value to the public:

Organizations that succeed with their initiatives, always add value to the consumer. The increase of video content (Instagram video, Vine, Youtube proliferation) all point to the consumer’s taste for entertaining but valuable content. The company that finds new ways to get noticed becomes valuable and more attractive for top quality applicants.

4) Use shareable content to drive marketing goals:

Aside from the HR goals of recruitment, job posts, like’s, are easily shareable and can go viral because of their short, easily­consumable format. These short-form videos should make special effort to write a good video title. No matter the quality of the content, the video’s title has to be enticing to motivate a click through.

5) Capitalize on creative skill sets and ability to create

Especially in small, young organizations, cross­functional skills like media production and social media savviness translate to dynamic and productive teams. The ability to produce rich media shows creative and non­linear thinking.

In today’s recruiting and hiring process, companies should branch out from tried and true networks like LinkedIn to create qualified applicant leads and have fun doing it. It’s time for your HR team to realize Youtube’s dynamic ability to recruit, hire, and create buzz.

Author: Russ Garcia is the Head of U.S. Growth for Crowd Reactive. He enjoys writing on marketing strategy, content creation, and social media. A self-admitted domain hoarder and couchsurfer, he loves the ability of the internet to bring people together under common goals. He currently resides in Austin, TX with his dog, Chi.

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