Like a website, empowering your staff to be on social media is now a given.
There are two mistakes that pretty much every company makes over putting your staff on social, or employee advocacy as people often call it:-
1. Marketing assume this is just another channel to push their content.
2. It is that it's assumed that everybody can just get on with it. We were talking to a very Social savvy CEO the other day and he said "when my staff realise the opportunity, they will just go online and talk about it". They won't.
Let's get the first of these out of the way, social media is not a push channel and it is certainly not a place to push corporate content. I know you have gone to the best marketing agency in the world, have the best copy in the world and the best photography in the world, but ..... I'm sorry none of us care. I know you think you have the best product in the world, but again, we don't care.
We are just like you, busy lives, dealing with our own shit and just like you, hate adverts, hate being pitched at, hate unsolicited emails, hate cold calls and hate anything that is salesy. So you have to stop.
At my last company sales people would come to me and say, "this is a waste of time, I cannot get over 200 followers, nobody is listening". I pointed out I totally agreed with them, but said if you keep pushing out boring content why would anybody listen. If you end up talking to a boring person, who keeps talking about themselves at a date or a party, you make your excuses and leave. The same with marketing.
The second point is that you need to activate and empower your staff. You need to give your staff permission that they can go online, you need to give them the guidelines. Not a document, that they will never read, but actually explain to them what is good and bad etiquette. Best still, empower them to talk about the company through the use of blogging. I recently read a blog on LinkedIn which was being torn apart with comment. The blog was boastful and factually incorrect and in fact was "corporate content" disguised as a blog. Of course, people are not fools and comment after comment lined up to take the piss.
Where as, if you blog in a authentic way, people will love you and support you. Because just like we we are all terrified. We all have a "blogging muscle" we just have to get used to using it.
The other mistake is to try and do this through webinar, nothing happens. The other mistake is to do this through "fact based training". Again nothing happens.
This is about changing the way people think, which is why we are very careful about what we say "activate" and "empower".
It's important that all workplaces have a social media policy. By doing this the company outlines what it expects from staff when they are using company social media platforms as well as their own in relation to their workplace. In the policy, it's important that you as the employer outline that while the company will not monitor any of the employee's personal social media accounts, that employees must not make disparaging remarks about the company which could possibly bring the company's name into disrepute. It should also be outlined in the policy that employees must not disclose any information regarding the company, or any confidential information relating to the business of the company, whether on their own social media sites or the company's.