How Recruitment Agencies Can Leverage Brand to Win New Business

By Emma Moody, 2nd May 2023

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Brand presents a key opportunity for recruitment agencies to increase their marketing performance. It can help you to align with your audience and win more candidates and clients. This article will cover the different elements of brand including brand strategy and brand identity, showing how you can leverage them to drive business outcomes.

What does brand do?

Brand helps recruitment agencies achieve 2 things:


1) Alignment
You can attract the right clients and candidates by enabling them to recognise that you are a good fit to work with them. When alignment is achieved, you’ll often hear people say ‘it just felt right’.


2) Enablement
Enable your team to roll out the brand and consistently communicate about the business.
Give your clients and candidates the confidence to refer you

The anatomy of a brand

A brand is split into your visual brand or brand identity which includes your logo, colour palette, imagery, icons, shapes and so on.

It also includes your brand strategy which is how we achieve alignment and increase the high quality leads you receive via your marketing. The brand strategy looks at why your business exists and what you hope to achieve (beyond making money).

Successful brands in action

Give a Grad a Go is an example of a recruitment brand that achieves alignment and enablement for the agency.

recruitment brand guidelines

Their brand resonates with a younger audience, using a witty and youthful tone. This is reflected visually using a fun and vibrant design system with nostalgic undertones. Their communication and overall look appeals to their demographic and their audience feels connected to the brand – making Give A Grad A Go their recruitment agency of choice.

In turn, graduate employers are attracted to Give A Grad because they want access to the best pool of candidates which Give A Grad A Go attracts.

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Bond Global is a recruiter that works in the deep and clean tech sectors. They have a very different demographic to Give A Grad A Go and target senior candidates for innovative roles in rapidly growing companies.

Bond Global align with their audience by dovetailing the reason that their agency exists and what they do with the reason that their client companies exist. For example, Bond uses key messaging such as “We’re here for the visionaries” and “There’s no planet B” which speaks directly to their clients who work in renewables, clean energy and environmentally positive technology companies that are innovating to clean up the planet.

In finding the meeting point between their business and their clients, fast growing and well funded companies in these industries choose Bond Global over competitor agencies. Of course, their messaging also attracts the best talent in the industry who also believe in building brighter futures and driving positive change.

Visually, we collaborated with Bond Global to interlock their design aesthetic with their values and the businesses that they want to attract. The use of dark base colours with vibrant pops of colour represent their key brand themes – technology, futuristic, environmental, big picture mindset. They use large zoomed out environmental imagery and layer this with other brand assets to make it uniquely theirs.

View website


How to achieve brand alignment for your agency

If this is your first time looking at your brand strategy, don’t let perfect be the enemy of the good. Many Marketing Managers who have undertaken brand strategy work before will know that it’s very easy to invest a lot of time in workshopping this stuff and get very little out of the other side.

Success in this area is coming out the other side with a clearer idea of your positioning and who you’re targeting. This is enough to enable you and your team to consistently communicate who you are, who you work with and the direction of the business. Getting something more than you have right now is the initial goal.


Finding your why

We find that focusing on finding your why is the best place to start when embarking on your brand strategy journey. There’s a fantastic TED talk by Simon Sinek that defines this well. By focusing on the discrete areas of why, how and what you do, you can refine your value proposition and how you should communicate with your audience.


Using Plug & Play as an example:
Why: We believe that every business has the potential to be a market leader
How: Using data-lead insights and strategy. Delivering quality and generating results
What: Websites, Marketing Strategy, Apps, Brand etc
Our clients choose to work with us because they have a goal to become more successful, grow their business and increase market penetration. They are looking for outcomes.

Developing your personas and archetypes

A persona is the profile of one of your target customers.
An archetype is the combination of the persona + the business.


Developing target customer archetypes will help you to understand your audience and how they can be targeted more effectively. Almost any information can be included in an archetype, so long as it is pertinent to your business and customers. We recommend looking at your best customers and breaking down the attributes about the individual and the business that make the relationship work so well.


This might include:
– Seniority
– Sector
– Need
– Goals
– Pain points
– Buying process
– Business position
– Access to budget
– Technology
– Recruitment process


Once you’ve established the factors that lead to positive relationships, you can address how to attract more of these customers.


Establishing your customer archetypes will make it easier to create a messaging structure that resonate with them. It will enable your team to communicate consistently and effectively to increase resonance and improve conversion. Your communication strategy also enables your clients to refer you in the best way, using your own messaging style.


To create a classic brand strategy model, we can combine the archetype insights with our ‘Why, How, What’ model using the template below as a guide. We’ve used Apple’s Purpose, Vision, Mission and Values as an example.


Brand Identity

Brand identity is something that a lot of SMEs do badly and this is the same within the recruitment industry.

There are 23.5k recruitment agencies in the UK and while they’ll all have a logo, font and some colours, the majority of them overlook the opportunity to develop a deeper more impactful brand. Brand identity is often confused with brand recognition and you’ll hear people say that you should recognise the brand if you cover the logo. However this isn’t achievable for most SME’s and while it does also speak to a consistent brand identity, it’s more closely linked to large advertising budgets and brand awareness.


A good brand is about more than looking pretty. It’s about driving growth and revenue. Adobe found that 38% of users will leave a website if they don’t like the design. With so many recruitment agencies doing brand badly, this is a significant opportunity to reduce bounce rate, improve traffic, improve search engine rankings, and improve conversion rate. It will make all aspects of your marketing more effective and make it easier for your clients and candidates to refer you.


Combining brand elements

A good brand identity combines the individual elements of your brand such as the colours, shapes, patterns, typography etc in a way that looks uniquely branded to your agency. Businesses with good branding are able to utilise stock photography in their marketing and brand it in a way that looks like it’s theirs.

The goal is to remove blockers that prevent your team from implementing their marketing strategy and to visually stand out from competitors.



Brand offers a huge opportunity to win new businesses, especially in the recruitment industry where brand is typically done badly. Stand out in your market by focusing on your audience and thinking about how you can align with them and achieve resonance. Reflect the outcomes of your strategy process in your brand identity for a cohesive and enabling final brand.

  • Define your target audience and built target archetypes
  • Align your brand strategy and identity around these audiences
  • Dig deeper into your ‘why’ and how this meets the why of your clients and candidates
  • Enable your team with clear messaging and a visual design system

If you would like a free consultation to discuss how you can improve your brand to align with your clients and win new business, contact our team at [email protected] or call us on 0203 0111 641.


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