The HR sections of company websites have long cited people as their most important resource. After all, it is the sum of your employees’ dedication, collaboration and hard work that yields organizational success. When employees love and believe in their work they ultimately perform better.
In the age of social media, the impact of employee satisfaction, engagement and love for your organization is even greater, because they can share it. Employees are your best brand ambassadors. They are friends with your customers, prospects and investors, and what they say about your brand in their news feeds will have more impact than the content that comes out of your corporate pages or paid ads.
Why? Because customers trust your employees more than your organization as an entity.
This is why you should leverage the power of your employees as influencers. Content can help you do this because it gives them something to talk about.
Here’s how you do it:
Collect awesome stories. It’s not enough that employees know your company’s mission, vision and brand story. They need to know about the everyday happenings that make your brand so special. Tales of stellar customer service, community outreach, or employee excellence need to be found and told, whether it’s through an internal portal, newsletter, social media site or a combination. These stories may not always be packaged impeccably like the ones told by the marketing team, but they are real – and people gravitate towards that.
Find the best way to share stories with your employees. Discover which channels your employees prefer using and share your stories there. Do your homework. Make sure you are offering news that interests them, in a format that doesn’t make them feel like they are doing extra work. This means nixing the 5000-word PDF newsletter in favor of short snappy lists, videos, quick facts, tweet chats or photos with captions.
Empower them to use social media. Encourage your people to be active on social media and trust that they will use it for good. Provide them with social media guidelines that highlight appropriate usage. Giving your employees the freedom to take mini social media breaks during the day allows them to relax a little, keep up with the news and connect with their contacts. The latter can have a positive impact on your brand when your employees share and endorse organizational content.
Ask your employees for feedback. Ask employees to share their own work stories and provide incentives to do so. Your people are in the trenches every day and often have the best story ideas – you just have to find them. Get their input on the storytelling and sharing process as well. You can do this through formal surveys, feedback forms and focus groups or informal chats with various team members.
Involving your employees in content production and dissemination makes them feel like they are a part of something bigger than themselves. It allows them to share their organizational pride with their personal networks while boosting your brand’s visibility. Your organization will greatly benefit from this more organic way of spreading news.