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Companies that have empowered their employees to be their advocates have seen the positive impact — on marketing, sales and recruiting efforts. This, coupled with strong employee engagement, can be a great starting point for building an effective employee advocacy program.
Here are just a few tips to consider as you get started:
1. Define your program goals and objectives. Of course you want to increase brand engagement and attract new talent, but make sure you also have measurable objectives (yes, those good old SMART ones) in place. From boosting engagement with your company content to increasing website traffic and everything in between, be sure to align goals and objectives to your advocacy program.
2. Identify social brand ambassadors. It may sound like a daunting task, but it’s really just tapping into those employees who are already active on social media and who can help kick start your program. And because they’re already active, their built-in network can further extend your company’s reach and brand engagement.
3. Provide (loose) guidance and best practices. While your brand ambassadors and employees may be social gurus, you want to ensure the content they share supports your objectives. These shouldn’t be overly orchestrated where the employee’s authenticity and perspective will be lost (and they more than likely won’t share your content for long, if at all, anyway). A general overview and examples of content with high engagement is probably all you really need.
4. Remind your employees about your social media policy. While most companies already have one in place in this day and age, it’s always a good idea to evaluate, update (if needed) and remind employees to review it when you do launch your program. You can also use that opportunity to educate on social media best practices.
5. Curate content. It sounds like a no-brainer, but your employees are already challenged with information overload as it is. Make it as easy as possible for them to be your company’s advocate — curate content that is worth sharing. If you can, take the extra step and target the most important information to different audiences with context as to why it’s relevant to them. This is a great way to help them quickly zero in on content that they can then add their personal perspective and share with their network.
6. Track your program’s success. Don’t overlook this important step once your program gets going. There are a number of fantastic tools out there (we’re platform agnostic but have listed just a few below) to help you launch and track your program results.
From shares per article to impressions per employee, there are a number of ways to quantify your program.
There are a number of companies — of different sizes, industries and more — that have seen tremendous success with employee advocacy programs. What companies do you feel have set the golden standard and why?
Bronn Communications is an Atlanta-based internal communications agency that helps companies reach and engage their most important audience and brand advocates—employees.