The most cost-effective brand advocate is right under your nose – Employee Advocates
Influencers do not always have to be huge stars or trendy niche bloggers; they can simply be the people that know your brand better than anyone else… your staff. Using ‘Employee advocates’ is not a new concept. Most businesses have staff that use blogging or social media outlets to promote what they do, what they are working on or their recent achievements. But is what they are doing helping your brand?
How to nurture your employee advocates.
Not everyone is comfortable with using digital outlets as a marketing and sales tool, so you need to nurture and train your employees to become confident and capable employee advocates.
Our top 3 tips to support new employee advocates are:
TIP. Let them choose their prefered social media outlets and give them control/ input when it comes to content creation. Also look at their current workload and set your expectations of them based on the minimums you would like them to do.
GIVE THEM CONTENT
TIP. Ultimately you pay people to do a job within your business and do not want than spending all day on social media or thinking up content for the blog [Unless it’s their job]. So make sure you have company updates going out that they can easily share or start discussions on. Then have someone in-house (or that you outsource to) that ultimately writes all the content so that it is relevant to your audience and in line with your companies brand guidelines.
HAVE A CLEAR SOCIAL MEDIA POLICY AND BRAND GUIDELINES THAT YOUR EMPLOYEES CAN UNDERSTAND
TIP. Do not assume your employee advocates will know the boundaries of social media or how you want them to represent your brand. One misplaced tweet sent after those Friday night drinks can do a lot of damage. So make you have a policy in place that has been read and understood by your employees before they are active. Also, keep the brand guidelines concise and clear regarding the words and visuals that they can use. Ideally, have a folder of pre-approved images that they can dip in and use at any time.
With all this in mind. We set our employee advocates a 2-week challenge to help them become more vocal online as TFG employees. We printed it out and everyone in the team has chosen their preferred platform and as of yesterday started their challenge. So why not give them a follow and see how they get on. Or why not join in with the challenge by downloading ou 2-week plan here and let us know how you get on.
Objective, measurement & data.
All business know that setting goals are crucial and for social media marketing this is no different. It helps keep your employee advocates focused and the content that they are sharing or curating relevant.
For the purpose of this 2-week challenge, our objective is to increase our brand awareness and traffic to the website. So, we will be looking at:
- Website referrals by platform v previous period and year – Via Google Analytics.
- Best received content in terms of engagement – The individual platforms insights.
% of people who saw the update that took action.
- Which updates had the largest reach – The individual platforms insights to see who
got in front of the most people.
FIND OUT HOW THEY GOT ON
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.