Finding Talent in Smaller Cities

Our agency is located in a small, rural city in West Tennessee—but we’re more than just a speck on the map. Jackson may be considered a metropolitan area, but thanks to our tight knit community, it feels more like a small town for those of us who call this area home. Despite nearly 67,000 people living in the Hub City, you always end up running into a colleague or even a mom from last week’s coach-pitch game. Jackson is a really big small town, and one I truly love. 

With many young, talented graduates moving to bigger cities like Memphis or Nashville, it can be challenging when seeking top talent for a creative agency like ours. Many creatives are drawn to larger cities that really speak to them. After all, we connect to the spaces we occupy. The more something feels like you, the better it can feel to plant roots there. So, if you’re in a city where young, talented creatives aren’t constantly moving into, how do you grow your team? How do you make sure your agency is scooping up the best and brightest and not your competition? I’ve started an agency, sold it, worked for one, and started my own again. After spending so many years working with the city’s best and brightest, this is what I’ve learned about hiring top-notch, creative people.

The work must matter.

A career with no purpose is a miserable one. Vibrant, talented individuals want to wake up, go to work, and know they’re making an impact. If your agency is helping a group of medical clinics grow, let your team know when the client was able to give their employees a $500 Christmas bonus. Tell your writer the counseling group you’re working with was able to help more people suffering from depression because they created compelling ad copy. Let them know how their work matters, and do it often.

Culture is king.

Creating impactful work is great, but a team working together to make it happen is even more important. Create an environment of collaboration, appreciation, and fun. Encourage team members to praise other team members publicly when good work is done. As the owner, stay connected to the overall vibe of your office. People want to work in a drama-free environment, so make sure yours stays that way. To make this easier to accomplish, make sure you hire kind, caring people. If they know how to treat others before coming on board with your company, they’ll likely continue that path. And as more people join in, the culture you’ve established will set the pace for new team members.

Be fun.

The type of talent you’re looking for will likely seek you out. They’ll be looking at your portfolio and social media presence, and likely googling your agency. Be sure to blend in visual representations of your company culture. If you celebrate birthdays internally, make sure to create a fun post for social media. If you’re at a team-building event after hours, create an Instagram reel. Show them who you are as best as you can. And lastly, when you create your job posting, make it stand out. Be bold, be creative, and make sure they’re excited about the possibility of staying in your town‒‒because they just might love their job so much they can’t imagine going anywhere else.

If you’re interested in partnering with B3 Creative Agency, call 731.240.1153 or email