Every company wants to increase sales and revenue. Period.
There are several ways you can do this. But what it really boils down to is more education of your product or services, and sourcing better quality leads.
The best quality leads come from word of mouth and referrals. In this modern business communication age, your employees are your brand. Collectively, they reach more people across more networks than your brand channels alone.
- Leads developed through employee social marketing convert 7x more frequently than other leads (Source: IBM)
- Sales reps using social media as part of their sales techniques outsell 78% of their peers (Source: Forbes)
- 84% of B2B decision makers begin their buying process with a referral.(Source: Sales Benchmark Index)
- A warm referral increases the odds of a sales success 2x-4x. (Source; LinkedIn Social Selling Report)
- Content shared by employees receives 8X more engagement than content shared by brand channels (Source: Social Media Today)
- Only 33% of buyers trust the brand whilst 90% of customers trust product or service recommendations from people they know (Source: Nielsen Global Online Consumer Survey)
By solely relying on your brand channels to generate awareness and leads, you’re limiting the top of your marketing funnel. A narrow TOFU (top funnel) generates a limited amount of leads, making your inbound marketing less effective.
So how do you maximize the organic reach of your marketing funnel and make it wider?
Empower Your Social Sellers
Social selling is like micro inbound marketing. Each employee has the ability to share content strategically to their personal networks and build relationships. Over time, they develop thought leadership and build a personal brand.
That personal brand translates into its own inbound engine where employees generate their own pipeline.
By empowering employees to share content, you’re immediately making your TOFU wider.
The more employees who represent you on social, the more prospects will be aware of your brand.
But how do you activate your social employees?
Turning 10,000+ Websites Into Greater Brand Health
The reality is, your company has thousands of websites. Every employee who declares who they’re working for on their personal social networks are technically representing you.
Some profiles are filled out nicely, some are half-assed. But what ‘s more important is that any of these can be turned into greater brand health for your company if they’re updated with great content.
In order to provide strategic content for your employees, at scale, you’ll need to invest in a modern social business infrastructure.
It’s time to update to the modern business stack. The way people communicate digitally has changed drastically over the last 10 years, and frankly, the systems you have in place just don’t have modern functionality.
By updating your employees with content and encouraging them to share, you’re increasing the number of sources pointing back to your brand, which will help increase the number of leads funneling through your pipe.
Inbound Marketing At Its Maximum Capacity
As marketers, we spend all this time optimizing our digital and inbound marketing strategies. We invest a ton of time in content, SEO, email marketing, paid media, and influencer marketing. We do media and blogger outreach, link building, social media promotion, community management, event sponsorship, and much more.
But we sometimes forget that our company’s most valuable assets are employees.
They’re the ones that people trust most. They’re the ones that are truly passionate about the brand. And they’re the ones that can help with growth.
Your digital reach is a collective of your employee personal brands. By encouraging and empowering your employees to share, every single one of them becomes an integral part of your inbound marketing engine.
The best way to find new sources for lead generation is through your employees.
Tying Everything Together With Analytics
One of the biggest challenges in digital marketing today is attribution.
How in the hell are you supposed to track individual employee contribution to your inbound marketing efforts?
That’s the million dollar question.
One place to start though is to look at the different integrations in your business stack.
How are you currently attributing lead sources or campaigns to conversions? Chances are you’re using some sort of UTM code or automation tracking.
Make sure that the infrastructure you use to empower employees to share integrates well with your conversion tracking. For example, our PostBeyond content library automatically appends UTM tracking to links. We can then filter our conversion data in Google Analytics by the PostBeyond campaign or employee ID number. We can even go one step further to look at multi-touch conversion paths in Google Analytics to see beyond last-touch attribution of campaign conversions (yeah, that’s a mouthful. Let me know if you want more information about how to find this 🙂 ).
Most automation softwares integrate with Google Analytics, so you could have the original campaign source parse through your nurturing platform to measure conversions that way.
Another way you can track attribution is by creating a field in your CRM for relationships that originated on social media (interactions, comments, conversations, etc.). Your employees can keep track of how they met someone, and you’ll be able to pull reports and attribute social media relationships to your bottom line.
Whatever systems you use, just make sure that you attribute links shared by your employees to your conversion data.
The Modern Marketing Funnel Is Here. Deal With It.
It’s time you take your inbound marketing strategy to the max. Employees are your business, and people trust them.
They play the biggest role in your organic referrals and word of mouth, and it’s time you update your business strategy to include them in your revenue model.
Every single employee contributes to the bottom line. You can educate your market and generate even more leads if you let your employees do what they do best: build relationships.
So why are you scared to let them share?
Come back to reality – digital communications is here to stay. Is your company going to be at the forefront of it? Or will you be left behind?
How do you source leads and build top funnel awareness? Where do your traffic sources come from? Does your traffic need to be diversified? Is it all coming from one source? Please leave a comment below and share with your colleagues.