Through social media, event marketing and even a fashion line, the campaign succeeded in attracting record numbers of applications from the diverse pool of High Potentials, BCG's designated target group.
The campaign in a glance
- Boston Consulting Group needed to differentiate itself from other recruiters by showing how it operates on a different level.
- The unprecedentedly diverse Gen Y has upended what had been standard practices in recruiting, talent management and career planning.
- With Welcome to the Group, Boston Consulting Group met the Zeitgeist by framing BCG as not just an employer brand, but a lifestyle brand centred on a value proposition using print, social media, event marketing and a fashion line to attract record numbers of applications.
- The campaign led to a 17% increase in applicants from university graduates, 15% increase in applicants from female university graduates and 30% increase in interview invites from BCG.
- New generation, new priorities
The image of the consulting industry no longer exudes the same charm as it once did. The diverse, heterogeneous Generation Y is upending the rules of recruiting, talent management and career planning. Old status symbols and the classic work-harder attitude are losing appeal. Selfactualization and the search for meaning are gaining appeal. The demanding and diverse target group of high potentials expects new, more holistic incentives: reskilling instead of linear career trajectories; a higher purpose instead of larger sports cars.
- New competitive context for talent
Google. Audi. Start-ups. In Germany, the biggest competitors are no longer other consulting companies, but disruptive innovators from all over the world.
Meanwhile, there is a persistent image of the consulting company as a place only looking for finance whizzes who fit neatly into the existing rigid apparatus. And yet, at BCG, the reality is very different from the cliche. The firm has built its success on drawing people from varied professions and fields of expertise-curious minds showcasing personality, ingenuity and entrepreneurship. How could they reach such well-educated and diverse target group, for whom all doors are open?
Diverse and driven: The High Potentials
We defined our key target group as High Potentials, the high-achieving graduates from the rising professionals and students of Generation Y. They are generally but not exclusively 20-29 years old, with educational backgrounds in social sciences, philosophy, or other liberal arts & sciences disciplines. More female and diverse than prior generations, they exist outside of the standard business school box and while they are on BCG's radar, BCG isn't necessarily on theirs.
Breaking out of the recruitment comms box
It was quickly apparent that work in the space followed certain unspoken rules. How else could the bland, undifferentiated recruitment communications with nothing to distinguish them from each other except for color and logos? We knew we had to break from this approach to show High Potentials that BCG operates on a different level.
Speaking recruitment in High Potentials' language
To better stand out to the young target group, we decided we had to stage BCG as a lifestyle brand with a modern value proposition. That value proposition: True team spirit, the coming together of very different types of people in pursuit of a common goal. This value proposition was true to the core of what BCG is about (building diverse, adaptable teams to solve the diverse tasks of diverse clients), and as a higher purpose, it was tailor-made for the demands and expectations of our target group.
Moreover, we knew that we would have to show that team spirit at BCG existed on a level deeper than an image campaign. There would have to be aspects of walking the walk. Through a mix of communicating and doing we decided to prove that, more then a job opportunity at a firm, BCG offers you a place within the group.