UPDATE: The 2-week #teamtfg employee advocacy challenge. RESULTS
As per our blog 2 weeks ago, we set a 2-week TFG social media challenge. The objective was to increase our audience reach and traffic to the website. Each team member concentrated on the social media outlet they favoured and the results speak for themselves:
STATS don’t lie.
We have seen a whopping 119% increase in referrals to our website from social media compared to the previous two weeks.
AND THERE IS MORE…
Some individual stats from the team:
Nat: Twitter Impressions + 4.1k, engagement + 1% LinkedIn Proile Views +12% (previously very active anyway)
Shannon: Twitter Impressions +4.6k, engagement +0.6% LinkedIn Proile Views +50%
Polly: Twitter Impressions + 12k, Link clicks +86% LinkedIn Profile Views +76%
In light of our pretty impressive results, if you want to learn more about employee advocacy on social media – read on…
In layman’s terms ‘employee advocacy’ means employees representing your brand either online or in person. Every business needs to nurture and turn their staff into advocates of their brand. We explained why in our Nurturing Employee Advocates blog.
Why You Should Encourage Employee Advocacy On Social Media
It is sad to say that some businesses are still fearful of allowing their staff to have company profiles on social media. The main reasons being:
- They don’t understand how to use social media themselves
- Fear of the ‘what if someone says something wrong.’
- Not having the resource to enable their employees to do it properly
- Fear that their staff will spend all day on social media
- They don’t know how to measure the impact it can have
Think about this. How long does it take to grow your following? What business owners have to realise is that their employees often have their own extensive network. Some of which aren’t a customer…yet…all of which trust what that employee says more than the company they work for, because of the relationship that they have.
A fascinating study carried out by Hinge Marketing and Social Media Today shows that the benefits of the having an employee advocacy program are a two-way thing. Almost 86% of advocates in a formal program said that their involvement in social media had a positive impact on their career. [source]Almost 86% of advocates in a formal program said that their involvement in social media had a positive impact on their career. Click To Tweet
What Do Businesses Need For An Employee Advocacy Programme?
It doesn’t take too much to get an employee advocacy plan into place. Especially if your brand is already on social media. The access to the data that you already have means you can tell what your audience likes to engage with and what they don’t. So these are the key steps to get your business, and employees, ready:
Policies in place. Make sure you are clear on what your brand guidelines and tone of voice are going to be online. Have clear core values that your employee’s buy-in to is an easy way to do this as well as a list of no-go topics and outlets (if applicable). Also, cover the what if’s so that each employee is clear on what to do or the consequences of poor judgement. Read our blog on Social Media Policy, it’s an oldy but a goody… we’ve been harping on about this since 2013!
Where your audience is. There is no point allowing an employee to choose Pinterest as their preferred social media outlet if you know that Pinterest is not where your audience is. This doesn’t mean you can’t try new networks, but be realistic and make sure that if you are going onto/into the unknown that there are a valid reason and objective.
Goals, output & measurement. What is the point without a goal, knowing what the output expectation is and how will you measure if it is working? While it may seem obvious to a couple of people, to some they need to know to keep focused and motivated.
Training & access. Some people will need to know how to use social media for business and not pleasure. It is a very different beast, so make sure you offer some training and that they have access to someone when they have questions.
Give them content & access to a plan. We have covered this previously, but remember not everyone has the time or headspace to create content for your brand. So ensure they have lots to say at any time and know what is going on within your business to be able to promote it effectively.
First impressions count. This should form part of the businesses social media policy. Each employee should have a professional headshot on their profile – over a Snapchat filtered selfie – and guidelines on how to complete their profiles.
So there you have it. Our own trial shows that amazing results can be produced by empowering your staff to become an advocate.
Don’t have staff? Don’t worry we have a blog in the making on how you go about building brand advocates outside of your business.
Crisis. One hears that word and thinks of disaster, large scale incidences and more. Large companies such as Shell or Apple will have extensive crisis communication plans, ready and waiting for any disaster of any scale. However, there will be many SMEs who think they don’t need one simply due to the size of their business.
Unlike how social media was originally intended, it’s no longer based entirely on human interaction. Click to read about the virtual influencer take over.
Back by popular demand, our Indie Way at Christmas is here! From the 12th of December through to Christmas Day itself, we’ll be sharing a prompt for a social post for something festive.