Social media can be instrumental to your business’s success. Yet, while crafting engaging company posts and running strategic campaigns is undoubtedly important, there’s an often-overlooked gem in every business’s marketing arsenal that often remains untapped: your employees.
What is employee advocacy?
Employee advocacy is the strategic activity of employees engaging with your business on social media and promoting the company’s brand, products, and services on their own social media channels. It’s not your typical corporate online chatter; instead, it’s a dynamic strategy that helps empower your employees to use their authentic voices and become vocal advocates for your brand on social media.
Participating in employee advocacy could include sharing relevant company content, expressing positive opinions, and engaging in conversations that are related to the company’s offerings. Employees add an invaluably personal touch to these interactions that makes them hugely effective as brand ambassadors. It’s casual water cooler chat for the digital world – and it makes an undeniable impact.
“Ben from Your Engine Room introduced to me to the world of employee advocacy. The impact for us is simple; wider engagement, larger audience and increased confidence internally that we are the experts in our field.”
Caroline Keating, Head of Commercial Services and Development, C+K Careers
So now we know what employee advocacy is, let’s dive into what exactly makes it so impactful. Encouraging employee advocacy can have some incredible benefits for businesses, from increasing brand awareness and building trust to attracting new customers and even new employees!
Here are the key reasons why you should encourage employee advocacy within your business:
Increasing brand awareness
Your employees don’t just work for your company; they form a valuable network of connections that extend far and wide. When they share content about the company on social media to their personal channels, it naturally increases the reach of your brand. That content could reach their friends, family, acquaintances, former colleagues, and even those connections’ connections. It’s an incredible ripple effect that essentially transforms your staff into walking advertisements for your company, leading to increased brand awareness and recognition.
Building trust and credibility
In a world where more and more people are becoming sceptical about traditional advertising, genuine voices carry a huge amount of weight. Consumers are far more likely to trust recommendations from people they know than the company itself. When your employees share content about their company it can build trust with their network of social media followers, who are more likely to view the content as genuine and authentic. When people see a post from a friend or acquaintance, it’s like a breath of fresh air amidst a sea of marketing talk and polished ads. Simply put, employee advocacy helps your business cut through the noise.
Attracting new customers
Employee advocacy can help businesses reach new audiences who may not have been exposed to the brand before. As employees share content that resonates with their own unique networks, they open doors to audiences who might have previously been unaware of your brand’s existence. It’s a modern-day version of word-of-mouth marketing and is a great way to attract new customers and help grow your business. After all, every unknown prospect on social media has the potential to become a loyal customer.
Embracing employee advocacy isn’t just a smart marketing move, it’s also a pocket-friendly way to connect with a new audience. Instead of spending on expensive advertising campaigns, by leveraging the networks of their employees, businesses can reach a larger audience for free. Championing authenticity over pricey campaigns is a genius approach that capitalises on the genuine enthusiasm of your team. What’s more, your employees’ audiences tend to be extremely relevant – particularly on LinkedIn.
Boosting employee engagement
Engaged employees are at the heart of any thriving workplace, and employee advocacy is the perfect way to inspire pride and ownership within your staff. Authentic interactions across social media can help kindle a sense of camaraderie within your employees, leading to increased job satisfaction and a more motivated workforce. You could even incentivise engagement. Along with these incentives, it’s important for your team to understand how their posts and engagement can hugely impact the brand’s trajectory.
As you can see, encouraging employee advocacy can have many benefits for businesses. Tap into the authenticity of your team and you can paint a vivid picture of your brand’s story on social media. It’s important to note that embracing employee advocacy isn’t a one-time strategy; it’s a shift in philosophy that should be embraced within your company’s culture.
“Ben carried out a session with our sales and wider office team on “LinkedIn & Employee Engagement” and we were super impressed with the way he relayed this to our staff! Thanks to his efforts everyone that underwent the session is now fully equipped to take our business to the next level on any social platform.”
Paul Kenny, Director, Aquatrust
By committing to championing employee advocacy, businesses can increase brand awareness, build trust, attract new customers, and boost employee engagement… all while keeping marketing costs low!