The third year of Ministry of Economy's successful ThinkSASK.ca national campaign kicked off with a bang. It was praised in the media as a "good spend" by analysts on the CBC’s The Current and the introduction of Facebook has been met with outstanding results. The overall campaign objective was to increase awareness of Saskatchewan as a good place to live, work and do business. In this third year, our main goal is to encourage people to find and apply for jobs in Saskatchewan. To achieve these objectives we decided the best strategy was to grow a vibrant Facebook community that showcases Saskatchewan as a place of opportunity. By promoting job opportunities in the province on Facebook through the use of the Jobcast recruitment app, and by offering tips and tools on re-locating to the province we can create conversation around quality of life and jobs in Saskatchewan. Our strategy outlined a couple of key points to creating and maintaining a high level of fan engagement:

  1. Content is king. Facebook is a great channel for content, and that’s why we recommended it. The idea is for the Community Managers to encourage fan engagement through content creation. It was important, as much in this case as it is with any social channel, to create content fans want and finding the right mix is important. It is important to keep campaign goals in mind, but to also offer the community content relevant to their needs. In this case, Social job seekers want to engage with the Saskatchewan Jobs Facebook page, and they also want interesting and helpful information that’s not simply a push from the province. So, we recommended a content ratio that includes tips to find jobs, information about the province and ideas on how to easily move here.
  2. Tone is one of the most important aspects of any social media strategy. Users expect the ability to engage with content they relate to on social media—they don’t want to be told; they want to have a conversation if they choose. Our recommendation is to always be honest, be real, be conversational. The use of social media is an opportunity for brands to develop a ‘human’ tone without representing an individual person or employee, and that is ideal in this situation. For the ThinkSask campaign, opening up the lines of communication through Facebook encourages users to ask questions and search for jobs, which meets the objectives of the campaign—to recruit job seekers, and promote the province.

The real success here is in the numbers, and goes to show that this concept is what job seekers were looking for. In just a few short weeks the Facebook page has grown significantly, blowing estimates out of the water. As of March 6th, 2012 the statistics were: 2,000+ Total Likes 512,000+ Friends of Fans 750+ Talking About This 1,772,000+ Weekly Total Reach 10,000+ Jobs Posted 2,134+ Total Job Views 219+ Total Job Applicants 10.26% Click Through Rate