With over two-thirds (67%) of Americans getting their news from social media, it just makes sense to showcase your brand where your customers are. One branded account is a great touchpoint, but it can only generate so much reach. Social ads can increase impressions but can be expensive depending on the platform.
Many marketing managers are turning to their fellow colleagues asking them to help promote content on their personal social networks. This is employee advocacy!
While the term might be new, you are most likely, already doing it. If you’ve done any of the following, you’re engaging in employee advocacy:
- Sending internal company e-newsletters with social share links
- Sharing spreadsheets where employees can cut and paste branded social messages
- Creating content repositories of branded materials for online sharing
- Asking colleagues to share photos and Tweet at events
Employee advocacy leverages the reach and network of your employees to further promote branded content on social. And there are massive benefits:
- Company branded messages reach 561% further when shared by employees versus branded channels.
- 70% of adults online reported trusting recommendations from friends and family, but only 15% trusted companies’ social media posts.
- Nearly 64% of advocates involved in a formal employee advocacy program cited attracting and developing new business as a positive program benefit, and nearly 45% attributed new revenue streams to employee advocacy.
- 86% of employees who participate in an employee advocacy program cite the increased social presence as having a positive impact on their career
You may be wondering why you haven’t seen the same success? While you are doing employee advocacy, in theory, you’re not making it scalable. Execution will make or break the success of an employee advocacy program. In order to achieve maximum benefits, there needs to be a formalized plan.
Without a formalized plan and strategy, your program will struggle. Cutting and pasting is not a productive use of employee time nor is it scalable. Also, there is no way to track the attribution of employees sharing content. Without metrics, it will be impossible to show the value of employee advocacy to both secure higher employee adoption and buy-in from executives.
In addition to a formal strategy, leveraging technology will help to scale the program and achieve results. Just like you leverage Marketing Automation to help automate and optimize your marketing nurture campaigns, to see the full potential of employee advocacy you need the right technology.
Most employees want to promote the brand but are busy and not willing to carry out tedious processes. Getting employees to actually open the email then cut and paste the message then open their own social profile and paste is a lot of steps – even to write out! Using technology simplifies this process and increases adoption.
Good technology will provide ease-of-use for employees and compliance and metrics for marketers. Employee advocacy solutions should:
- House all content in one repository
- Filter content based on user (location, department, seniority, etc.)
- Allow for simple sharing to employees’ networks
- Provide option for engaged employees to easily suggest content
- Streamline the approval process for content being posted
- Show metrics on employee use
- Help increase adoption and sharing rates through gamification
- Provide analytics on content performance
- Have the ability to track program ROI
Implementing the right tech stack along with a comprehensive strategy will allow marketers to see the full potential of employee advocacy. When done correctly, employee advocacy programs generate greater share of voice, increase brand awareness, drive inbound leads and pipeline growth, increase in social touches, etc. The key to achieving results is arming your team with the right tools to be successful.
To learn more about employee advocacy or PostBeyond, request a demo now!