Forget job boards, career fairs or LinkedIn.

Many companies are turning to different, more creative recruiting methods to find candidates.

We're in the 21st century, where free tattoos or a hot, limo-chauffeured date could make or break a candidate’s decision (also see "pet insurance as a benefit").

The latest recruitment campaign was launched by Zoosk, a social dating community. Zoosk needs software engineers, so they’re promoting “Find a Job. Get a Date” – sending two lucky hires on an all-expenses-paid date in L.A. with its TV commercial stars, Samantha and Steve.

They’re also giving a $10,000 referral fee to any new engineer hired through Sept. 30.

Co-CEO Alex Mehr said, “Given our goal to change the face of the online dating category, we thought it only made sense to include a fun date with one of our talented TV actors in our new campaign to attract great engineers.”

It sounds like a potential sexual harassment hotbed, but otherwise an interesting recruitment ploy.

Anytime Fitness just added body ink as a tempting incentive on its list of employee benefits. Real tattoos, not the ones the kiddies buy for 25 cents in the gumball machines outside Perkins.

That’s right – if you work for the nine-year-old fitness franchise, the company will pay $100 to get employees inked with its purple Running Man logo.

According to the Twin Cities Star Tribune, more than 200 staffers have been showing their loyalty to Anytime Fitness by “bleeding purple.” The company will even provide mobile tattoo parlors at conferences, for anyone willing to let themselves be branded.

CEO Chuck Runyon said, “Although we pay for it, there’s never pressure. It’s only if you want to do it.”

And it’s there as a permanently painful reminder if you get fired from the company.

Anyone remember Hipster's offer of a year's worth of free Pabst Blue Ribbon?

There are less extreme recruiting tactics out there, too.

I Love Rewards, a company that creates rewards and recognition programs to help recruit and retain employees, held a cocktail party recently at San Francisco’s W Hotel, to help the hotel recruit 40 salespeople for a new branch.

Appirio gave out free tacos at last year’s Dreamforce cloud computing conference, and also conveniently planted signs where attendees could also see them, alerting people that the enterprise software company was hiring.

A risky choice, given that some job seekers might have preferred Italian, or were vegetarians, but a good idea, nonetheless.

According to BusinessWeek, they plan to do something similar at this year's conference.

Using free food to lure in employees isn’t so new though; the same article said that in 1998, software/hardware company Oracle recruited engineers by parking an ice cream truck with its bells playing outside their competitor.

Devious? Yes.

And brilliant. All's fair in jobs and war.

Is your company prepared to add five-figure referral bonuses in order to find new employees?

Share your creative recruiting techniques in the comments below!

Tags: Business, 21st century recruiting methods, Alex Mehr, Anytime Fitness, Appirio, Bleeding purple, Chuck Runyon, Creative recruiting methods, Dreamforce conference, Find A Job Get A Date, I Love Rewards, Oracle, Running Man logo, Running Man tattoo, San Francisco W Hotel, Social dating community, Software engineers recruitment, Zoosk