For years, businesses have been spending thousands of dollars on their marketing collateral without realizing they already have one of the best strategies on hand that won’t cost a penny—their employees.
When trained correctly, your employees can be the best advocate for your brand. They can spread the greatness of your company, your products and your services to others through word of mouth or other social tactics, such as social media.
The best way to ensure your employees become advocates for your company is to promote it. If you have a company intranet or other portal for information, use it to spread messages you want your employees to spread. Let them know about upcoming events, company awards, recent promotions and any other company information you think they’d be willing to share.
The more you can point your workers in an arrow.. the better!
Happy Employees are Advocating Employees
If you keep your employees happy and prove to them that you are a great company and provide great products and services, they’ll be willing to share this information when talking about their job to the outside world. One of the best ways to keep your employees happy is to ensure that you are providing a great workplace. Make sure to promote from within your company, highlight employee achievements and hold company events to reward your employees for their dedication and achievements.
Stress the Importance of Social Media
With the onslaught of social media, your companies have an easier way to advocate for your brand. In order to get employees on board, make sure you let them know that you approve of them engaging with current and prospective customers through the use of social media. By having conversations with real employees, your brand starts to become more human to your customers and less business. This can generate better relationships between your business, your employees and your customers.
Create Policies and Best Practices
Before you can ask your employees to advocate your brand via social media, you need to first create a policy or best practices guide. These documents should highlight what you expect of your employees via social media, what behavior is appropriate and how to correctly interact with customers. You also need to let them know what is considered inappropriate and highlight the actions that will be taken if they ignore your policies.
Create an Advocate Team.
While you expect all of your employees to advocate for your brand, not everyone has a social media presence, and it’s unfair to ask everyone to participate if they’re uncomfortable with it. Instead, send out a company email and let your employees know that you’re looking for social media advocates. Then let employees that are interested reach out to you.
Implement a Strategy.
Once you have a team assembled, set up a meeting and discuss strategy. Make sure that each advocate has a specific role and that they each understand their responsibilities. Be sure to also discuss which social media platforms they want to use, and be sure you have a healthy mix of employees advocating on all channels. The last thing you want to do is have all of your advocates focusing on one platform.
It’s also important to set up monthly meetings for your advocates to assess their results and reassess their efforts. This way, they can continue to advocate for your brand in ways that will deliver results.
Your employees can generate a great amount of interest in your brand. Allowing them to reach out and advocate for your brand can be beneficial to both your social media presence as well as your overall marketing success.
Johnathan Callum is a marketing professional and entrepreneur who often gives business advice or tips through his blogs.
Photo Credit: hermannyin