SOLUTIONS & TECHNOLOGY

Jan-30-2024

4 steps to building a powerful employee advocacy program

Khoros Staff

Before using celebrities or influencers to amplify your social media presence, consider your existing employees’ reach. Your employees could reach a 561% larger audience than your brand accounts! At only a fraction of paid advertising costs, more businesses than ever are building employee advocacy programs – a strategy to activate employees as brand ambassadors.

You can build a powerful employee advocacy program for your brand in just four steps:

  1. Know your Why

  2. Determine the Who

  3. Use the right tools

  4. Measure and optimize

Step 1: Know your Why

Knowing your ‘why’ comes down to this: What are you aiming to achieve by launching an employee advocacy program? Your answer will become the foundation for your strategy and is crucial for your employees’ support.

Your aim could be extending your social reach, driving brand awareness, or having more subject matter experts in your field share your knowledge.

It could be curating more authentic content for your social properties by having your employees help source and contribute to your outbound posts.

Or perhaps your mission is simply to form deeper connections 1:1 between employee and individual customer instead of the brand to the customer.

With this in mind, you’ll be ready to set program goals, outline key performance indicators, and select the right social channels to achieve your objectives.

You may need executive buy-in for this strategy. Learn more about educating executives on how employee advocacy aligns with wider business goals and providing examples and other resources showing its success.

Step 2: Determine the Who

Depending on your mission, you have various options regarding who your advocates will be.

Do you want to limit your employee advocacy program to a certain number of internal influencers or run an opt-in-only program? Is recruiting employees across the organization with representation from different departments crucial, or will your program be company-wide? 

Whatever you decide, Cameron Brain, CEO of EveryoneSocial, recommends casting your net as wide as possible. In a Q&A with Khoros, he said:

“We should consider having an open-door policy, creating an environment where some people share a lot, others weekly, and others will not. But, at least we’ve taken a step forward of starting to include them and expose them to that content. We see across our customers that most people are willing to participate in some form that creates tremendous value for their company.”

When determining your Who, remember that your company culture matters. For example, in flatter organizational structures, appointing a department or team lead passionate about communicating your brand could be helpful. In more hierarchical companies, getting executives on board may be more motivating.

4 steps to building a powerful employee advocacy program

Step 3: Provide the right tools

Your advocates will need inspiration, knowledge, and the right solution to make this program successful. Let’s break it down:

Inspiration

It’s essential to create opportunities for employees to engage, whether it’s winning to celebrate, social events, or company and industry news. When implementing an employee advocacy program, your main task is to inspire employees to become passionate and active ambassadors.

Knowledge

Social media may not be everyone’s first language, so be ready to break down the basics. Create guidelines and best practices to activate and empower your team, such as copy length, best practices per channel, publishing cadence, preferred hashtags, and general social dos and don’ts.

Determine the most effective way to communicate guidelines, best practices, and moments of inspiration with internal employees—and don’t forget to incentivize and celebrate wins.

Solution

Deploying employee advocacy at scale is challenging to do manually, which is why more businesses than ever are turning to employee advocacy solutions such as EveryoneSocial. With their employee advocacy solution, your employees have all the content they need at their fingertips, and they can share it to their networks with just one click. Plus, you can get invaluable insights into exactly who’s engaging with your content, so you know who to target and what’s resonating with them.

If you’re a Khoros Social Media Management user, EveryoneSocial’s employee advocacy solution seamlessly integrates with your existing social suite!

Step 4: Measure & Optimize

Track the right set of metrics to measure the effectiveness of your program. Each organization will have a different measurement approach and strategy based on their organization's mission and program goals. Establishing what you’ll measure and how and when you’ll report.

Also, keep in mind that tracking KPIs for employee advocacy will be necessary for maintaining the long-term growth of the program. Entrepreneur offers helpful tips as to what exactly to track—and why.

Employee advocacy should not be considered an in-the-moment tactic but a part of your overall strategy.

Learn more about the value employee advocacy can bring in this tipsheet.

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