Over the last few years, employee advocacy has become an important process to many medium, large, and enterprise companies across various industries.
It’s one of those terms that started gaining traction quickly, but it’s more than just a trend or “fad.” In fact, employee advocacy is more important than ever.
What is Employee Advocacy?
Employee Advocacy is simply the promotion of a company by employees who share their support for a company’s brand, product, or services on their social media networks. While social media is often the main medium for employee advocacy, employees may also use other outlets like email, chat, forums, discussion boards and more.
Now, ready to learn why your company should invest in employee advocacy? Below are some reasons you should use employee advocacy to increase your business.
Boosts employee engagement and productivity
One of the main attractions of employee advocacy is that it helps boost employee engagement and productivity. Many times, generating more engaged employees is a challenge that most businesses would love to solve. Employee advocacy can help.
Employees who are engaged with your company and product are more passionate about their company, their work, and their careers, which can give a big boost to your business. Employee advocacy gets employees more involved with company content, encourages them to share their ideas, and can keep employees in the loop about their company (transparency).
Giving employees direct company insight, contribution opportunities, and valuable content will keep them happier and more engaged, which will improve overall productivity.
Increases lead quality
Since employee advocacy involves social media and content sharing, a big driving factor of investing in this process is that it improves the overall lead quality.
Generally, most businesses want to increase revenue and get more quality leads.
In this employee advocacy guide, the research found the following about employees:
- Employees have an average of 1,090 social connections
- Employees have 5x more reach than corporate accounts
- Employees social followers are 7x more likely to convert
Additionally, a Nielsen study showed that 84% of people trust recommendations from friends, family, colleagues over other forms of marketing. Those statistics are a powerful case for investing money and time into employee advocacy.
Essentially, your employees now become the extended lead generators for your company and because of that, the quality of those leads is greatly improved.
Improves brand visibility
Typically, one challenging aspect for companies and maybe even your company is brand visibility. With so many companies sharing content, posting, and fighting for web space, how does your company stand out or be seen?
Employee advocacy will help with brand visibility and keeps your company name in front of people consistently.
Think about how many employees your company has, their average social connections, and how often they start sharing content.
Your brand and content have a better chance of being seen constantly everywhere. This helps people recognize your brand and develop a sense of trust since your company content is being shared by so many people.
Just like with advertising, the more times your brand is mentioned, the more memorable it becomes. Let your employees improve your brand name recognition by increasing the number of times it appears before your audience.
Increases overall reach
As employees post, you will find that each advocate reaches hundreds of potential leads your corporate profile doesn’t currently have following it.
If your company has hundreds of employees, you could be reaching thousands or tens of thousands of people you wouldn’t otherwise reach. Since you have a targeted demographic you want to sell your product or services too, your employees help you reach those people directly.
You probably are also spending money on advertising to get your brand out in front of new eyes, but that should be more of a compliment to your employee advocacy efforts.
How often do you click on an ad compared to clicking on something a friend or colleague shared? So make sure you are also spending time and effort on programs that will increase your reach through your employees.
Up to this point, I highlighted the benefits of employee advocacy for your company and even how it can help your employee. Yet, another important piece to mention is it improves your customer’s happiness.
Without your happy customers, your business would not exist.
Because you have enabled employees to participate in your employee advocacy program, improved their engagement, and overall happiness, this, in turn, affects their interactions with customers positively.
If your employees are happier and your business is more visible, then your customers will be happier.
In the end, the fastest way to boost your business is through happy customers. With happier customers, you just might be ready to move on to making brand advocates out of them as well.
With the content arms race in full effect, the battle to take the content hill is pretty fierce, especially in industries that are on the cutting edge of marketing practices. This being said, the more (good) content, the better the results.
Unfortunately, for many businesses, even larger organizations, the marketing falls on the shoulders of just a few.
If a company has 100 salespeople, and each writes (or helps write) one blog article every 4 months, how many total articles per year would that equate to?
Yep, 300, and that’s without causing a major burden on any singular person.
Now granted, I know most companies don’t have nearly this many employees, but even 3 employees contributing content on a consistent basis can work miracles in terms of generating more traffic, leads, and sales from content marketing. The bottom line is “Insourcing” works. Do it.
People are now emotionally invested.
There is something very magical about seeing your name next to an article, an eBook, a whitepaper, etc. The majority of employees for companies big and small around the world do not currently see themselves as teachers, nor realize the value of their words and knowledge. This all can change the moment they put their name next to a piece of content and thereby take ownership.
Everyone is a teacher. It’s our job to help them realize that.
The pride of knowing you have influence for good on others. Many employees will find a sense of pride and purpose they never previously felt—something that can have a tremendous overall impact on the company morale.
On a final note, if you do decide to require your employees to write blog articles and produce content, I’d suggest you give them as many ways to do this as possible. Generally speaking, there are 3 methods of employee content extraction:
- The employee writes the post
- The employee makes a video post
- The employee is interviewed by someone who then turns the information into a blog post and acts essentially as a ghostwriter.
By allowing employees to choose one of these three methods, you’re much, much more likely to get full participation, as you have now overcome any potential obstacles/excuses that may have impeded a significant amount of work and progress.
No doubt, this stuff works, it’s just a matter of getting the work done.