It is a fairly well-known fact that companies and business leaders would love for their employees to share more of their content. However putting this into actuality is a slightly different process, and there can be a number of hurdles, and barriers that are not encouraging your employees to become the brand ambassadors that they could be. There are a huge number of reasons your employees should be sharing company content, one of which being that combined employees social accounts, will tend to 10x larger than the companies own social following. This amplification can be enormous for marketing campaigns, to help drive more engagement. Beyond this, employees sharing content can help benefit them by growing their professional network. Employees become confident in standing out as an ambassador and in some cases a trusted expert in whatever it is that you provide as a product or service. Check out the benefits of becoming an employee advocate.
Below we have outlined some of the major stumbling blocks for employees sharing content, and what you can do to help them.
What Can I Share?
The number one response we’ve encountered from employees relating to sharing is “I don’t know what I’m allowed to share”. From their employers? “We don’t want our employees sharing the wrong thing”.
Our own research shows that 60% of employees said they would probably or definitely be more likely to create or share company content if employers made it easier to do so. This can all be overcome with a very simple process, conversation. Once a conversation has been had, you can decide what you would like to achieve from employees sharing. Conversely, you can find out what your employees would like to share, and what they feel would be beneficial to them. By doing this you are able to incorporate social media into employees day to day work life helping them become true brand ambassadors.
What’s in it for the Employees?
One of the earlier hurdles we generally see in an advocacy program is helping your employees understand and appreciate what is in it for them. So, what is in it for everyone? To get buy-in from your business, you can follow the same steps as above to demonstrate its value, by creating goals then choosing the appropriate content and framework to drive them.
Motivating your employees will be different depending on your company culture, and may even be different across departments and team. Some employees are already bought into their company and brand from the moment they start the job, others respond better to perks and rewards. Perks and prizes don’t necessarily have to be a shopping voucher or an extra day off (although these are very effective), top performers can be rewarded with a donation to their favourite charity or even just a trophy. Utilising leaderboards and creating some healthy competition helps to gamify the sharing process, making it more entertaining and engaging for those involved.
Where Should I Share To?
People are precious about their personal audiences and rightly so.
When you’re creating your framework for social media at work, it’s important that you remind employees that their accounts are their own and you’re not invading their personal space. They have the option to share content, should they choose to, but it is not a must. My Facebook is a personal account, not one I use very much as of late, but nonetheless, it is not somewhere I wouldn’t share work-related content unless it seemed particularly fitting. My LinkedIn however, is a social network that I plan to use to develop and nurture my professional career, as a way to help increase the number of people in my professional circles and to engage with a prospective audience. Making that distinction early on makes my sharing experience comfortable and more rewarding, and I am able to share where I feel content is most appropriate.
It is important to address the potential hurdles you may have with an employee advocacy program. Doing this earlier rather than later allows you to be able to understand how you would like your advocacy program to run, and what you feel would be the best approach for your particular company and team.