We talk a lot about Employee Advocacy in Strategic Social Media….it’s a hugely powerful force.
Its not about taking corporate content and blasting it out through employee social media profiles. If that worked, you wouldn't need a Sales team.
An often forgotten element of advocacy is that your advocates are more than just your employees, they are ex-employees, prospects, customers and the combined network of all of these people.
Your job is to motivate and empower this broad spectrum of people to take action for you.
Employee Advocacy in the 2020s...
Things have changed so much. For starters, we need all hands to the pumps to help us connect and generate leads. Its no longer just Marketing that are responsible for leads and just Sales responsibility to have prospecting conversations with clients about - The game has changed, we need everyone on the front line.
For seconds, we are bombarded by 1000 messages a day from companies, there is plenty of corporate content. In fact, there is a fire-hose of content, aimed right out faces telling us how great the company is and how great the product is.
The problem with this is, you are just another company and just another product. You are just one of those 1000 messages, lost in 1000 messages.
You think your product is the best and "if only people you could get it out there more, people will love it" but they won't. Everybody has their own product to talk about, their own newsletter they want you to read, their own corporate presentation….
Problem number one is that there is too much content – You must differentiate. Think of all the people you like on LinkedIn or other platforms – why do you like their content..?
You may have heard of Employee Advocacy, put simply it is activating your employees to talk on social, importantly, in their own voice.
This may seem daunting to some Business Leaders, it’s not something you can just ‘switch on’. It starts with Trust…."but how can I possibly trust my employees to talk about this company on social media …?”.
You trust them with expensive equipment, you trust them with company money…you trusted them enough to hire them in the first place.
Then comes high quality Training, so we all understand what good and bad behaviour is. In just the same way we do with anti-bribery, health and safety, diversity and inclusion or sexual harassment training. Companies aiming for real advocacy have to invest in their people to set the tone, give people to correct tools and eliminate mishaps.
Advocacy works on a number of levels and brings more than direct company benefits. Employees enhance their credibility and can position themselves as industry experts. Match this with a Social Selling programme and very quickly you have a powerful mix.
Why would you do this?
Did you ever check out a company website where they told you that they were a bit expensive compared to the competition, they were a bit slower than most and are actually quite unreliable…no? Exactly. Websites only say how great companies are, and the modern buyer is wise to this.
Its fair to say that most people in your company are on some Social Media platform. They may even be on some platform that your company isn’t. Like it or not, they may be sharing your company content on some of their platforms already. LinkedIn tell us that the average company employee group has 10x more connections that the organisation they work for.
What if you could embrace this? What if you could harness all of that energy and have your employees take over the Social ‘Share of Voice’ in the sectors you want to be known in.
Not just Sales and Marketing, everybody. This isn’t about giving them a tool to distribute corporate content that people are already ignoring. Let’s really enable our employees.
Get them to talk in their own voice on social. Let’s trust them. Let’s get an outside firm in to help us how to do this properly, but let’s trust our employees. Let’s see what can happen if all of our employees, without fear, speak on social in their own voice.
Social Media has changed the world...
...so why don’t we do something about it in our businesses?
For me, Danielle Guzman - Global Head of Social Media for Mercer, puts it best...(see link to TimTalk with Danielle Guzman and Tim Hughes).
Danielle lays it all out for us on a classic podcast with Tim Hughes entitled “5 ways to kick-start you Employee advocacy programme”.
Please take the time to watch and listen, then ask...."why dont we do this....?"
What could happen if you shared your Company culture on-line…
- Access to markets you don’t have at the moment?
- Access to suppliers you don’t have right now?
- More leads and meetings?
- Easier recruiting?
- Employees more engaged?
Get in touch and we can talk about getting your people to become a powerful force for your business on Social Media.
Crux / DLA Ignite
“Why not integrate an element of your employee base, who can bring your culture to life, who can bring the experience of working for your organisation". "Advocacy is a marathon not a sprint, you cant turn it on and expect results in 30 days but, you can build and start seeing incremental gains month after month" - Danielle Guzman.