How does employee advocacy work?
Customer brand engagement is crucial to any business - not only to be able to understand, design and sustain the customer journey. It is about meeting existing and potential customers craving to "buy-in" on your brand values, more than your product. Your products and services alone, your corporate channels, ads and promos, does not cut it anymore. Customers wants to hear, understand and believe in your story - your DNA.
Employee and customer brand engagement
All companies have a purpose and story, a DNA, that can vastly support customer brand engagement, but hiding it behind ads, promos and corporate channels only - makes it difficult for even the most eager prospect to find out if your story fits his or her expectations and align with their values.
As customers, we remember engaged, service minded and knowledgable encounters, more than the brand itself. It makes us want to engage with the experience and the value. It creates customer brand engagement.
It is actually as simple as that. Engaged employees can positively influence the customer journey - dis-engaged and uninvolved employees wont. In other words, without high employee brand engagement your customer brand engagement will suffer.
For every employee that can tell your story, convey your values and vouch for your brand you will gain access to many more potential customers than your traditional branding will ever achieve.
Employees turning up to work every morning is not brand engagement. Whereas, including employee brand experiences on a continuous basis will lay the foundation of establishing and optimising employee brand engagement.
Advocacy is a learning curve
It is not just leading brands which are activating their best brand ambassadors as the next wave of influencers. We see even smaller companies growing with employees as part of the marketing strategy to influence people in their networks.
Employees are not celebrities, and just like you and me, they probably do not have the social reach or power of a Kardashian, yet when hundreds or thousands of employees’ voice the same message, engaging with the brand, they multiply the reach of the corporate brand. Advocating on this scale, your organic reach is not only authentic it also endure high degree of trust. Real influence is not about popularity. It is ones ability to cause effect or change behaviour.
To get to this level, we have to accept the learning curve. It is not necessarily steep, and it takes time to establish a personal brand that shines through on your social profiles. Training can be necessary and segmenting this training to fit new, moderate and superusers, you meet requirements of most employees.
Mix it up
A good content mix is vitamins for your website and social media channels. Up-to-date and high quality content reflects a thriving business. All content producers know that it takes time to plan an produce, that is why clever content producers repurpose content. By repurposing, you can recirculate content and maximise the value of your work.
Repurposing is important because one of the biggest concerns that we meet regarding SoMe is content. Starting with the basics, repurposing is taking a great piece of content that you already created and change it so it suits a different goal, media or format.
After spending countless hours creating content that resonate with your audience and builds trust. Your research, topics and formats is carefully chosen to make your audience explore your offers, expertise and services. What we often see is content is published then left there to gather cyberspace dust.
By repurposing, you collect that same content piece and same information you already used and repackaging it to appeal to a different audience. It may also serve a different purpose and when you recreate content you expand reach, involve a different audience while being aware of time consumption remains at a minimum. We all strive to work smarter not harder - repurposing is one way to do that.
Choose a platform to support your work
Ads, paid reviews, content marketing are also important tactics but word of mouth is still the strongest reference and recommendation a company can receive - this exchange of experience depends on person to person or peer to peer relations and that is why employees are so essential for the customer experience.
A platform should fist and foremost support employees in their social media activities while providing employee advocacy administrators data and insights on performance, engagement and ROI. Choosing a tool that is simple to use and can maintain employee engagement is essential because it makes it a natural part of the daily workflow and in not seen as an additional workload. Make it fun to share!