In part one of this series, I made my case for the value of building a social media strategy based around employee advocates. Backed up by a few facts and figures proving how much higher the bar has been set for brands in the age of millenials and social media, it's not a hard argument to make! So now that you know the "why," let's talk "how." Step one:
Do Your Homework
One of the best resources for companies looking to implement a social employee plan is the book “The Social Employee: How Great Companies Make Social Media Work” by Cheryl and Mark Burgess. The book discusses every aspect of social employees, the first of which is that before even attempting to set your staff loose on social media sites, there are some HUGE foundational principles that must be established in order to have any real impact.
Here’s a proven process you can follow to lay the proper groundwork:
Determine the Why
In order to believe in something, employees have to know what it stands for. For a social employee campaign to work, an organization must establish a sustainable culture. Nail down why your company does what it does and own it.
Branding from the Inside Out
One of the best starting points and most important questions to ask your employees is if they know what your brand stands for. The second most important question is do they care? Use employee responses to formulate a method to help them understand your “why.” Give them reasons to believe in it, such as stories or emotional connections. Once employees understand the why and buy into it, you can leverage their voices as a marketing tool.
Who are Social Employees?
Every brand and company has employees that are leaders or evangelists on social media sites representing their company. These people are the ones who are engaged with their work and the brand. They are passionate about your company- always rooting for the home team and cheering others on. They’re already using social media to talk about the brand and position themselves as professionals. These people are your social leaders and should be at the helm of your social employee army.
But what's a good social employee strategy without a little testing and measurement, right? Check back next week for the final post in this series to find out how to master the fine tuning!