5 Reasons Why Your Employee Advocacy Program SUCKS….

  • Alen BubichSeptember 12 2014
Your Employee Advocacy Program sucks - here's why....


People buy from people they trust. People trust people like themselves – or because one of their family and friends (who work at your company) told them to. According to Neilsen, 84 percent of people trust recommendations from people they know – more than any other form of advertising. We know this as “B2B social networking” aka the trending topic on Mashable, TechCrunch, Wired or in your favourite LinkedIn group. Facebook statistics show that the average user has at least 130 connections. That’s previously untapped market that you can now reach with an employee advocacy program. Think of the possibilities!

Have you considered launching your very own employee advocacy program, but are stuck trying to get employees on-board? Not sure what your objectives should be? Confused what a content strategy even means?

Log out of LinkedIn, close Buzzfeed, stop reading fan fiction on Reddit and read this….

Your employee advocacy program sucks and here’s why:

You Haven’t Set a Clear Employee Objective

What happens when you assume? You leave room for confusion and error. Don’t assume that your employees will automatically know what you are trying to achieve by introducing an employee advocacy program into their sheltered little bubbles. Sure, they use social media for cat pictures, showing the world how adorable their newborn spawn is and making everyone jealous with their vacation pictures (you don’t fool us with your #nofilter lies) – but expecting them to willingly post promotional marketing content without a clear goal, consistent messaging and scheduled timing is a recipe for disaster.

This is a marketing initiative, correct? It needs business-related objectives with clear, measurable outcomes. Even if you don’t have a clear expectation of what you are trying to achieve, your employees will post content that is not on brand and could leave your business open to social media #fails. Here are some great social media objectives to get you started:

  • Awareness – brand development, community outreach

  • Campaigns – promotions, products, events

  • Talent – recruitment, employer reputation

Need some time to think about that one? Good – take as long as you need. Maybe you didn’t know that employee advocacy was so all-embracing. Does your new product goes on sale at the end of Q3 that deserves a social-media campaign? You need to tell the world about the launch event you’re spending your entire marketing budget on. That way, you can at least justify the expense.

Now put some numbers on it. And I don’t mean finger-in-the-air guestimates of the number of new followers the campaign attracts. Followers aren’t useful unless they’re also advocates, and if your employees don’t take the lead, forget it. How about this:

“To generate 3,000 confirmed registrations for our Q3 product-launch event by the closing date”

Good, you have an objective. Now maybe, just maybe, you’re in with a chance. But …

You Didn’t Appoint an Employee-Advocacy Champion

Are you the Steve Jobs or Bill Gates of your company? You run this business and if you say it’s going to happen, it’s going to happen?

Wrong. Wrong. Wrong.

People become ambassadors for a brand because they have plenty of good things to say about it – in this case, it’s your people and your business. You want your employees to use their personal social-media networks to spread the word about your upcoming event. Do you seriously believe they’re going to share anything like that with their trusted connections just because you tell them to?

First and foremost, people share business-related content with friends and followers because they believe it will interest them. But here’s the catch – you can’t do that yourself unless you’re already operating on the same networks, so you need someone who is. That’s your champion, by the way.

Remember the Marketing Exec you nearly fired when she dared oppose your social-media ban? You’re lucky – she’s still working at your company because, deep down, she really identifies with your products. She still tells all her Facebook friends how much she enjoys coming to work for you. You don’t deserve that kind of loyalty, but now’s your chance to recognize it. She’s your champion. Go tell her. Make her day.

So now you’re up and running. What’s next?

You Don’t Know How to Get Your Employees Involved

You could always talk to them – that works for me. You do talk to your people I guess? OK, so you don’t … well, now’s the time to start. Take the time, energy and passive aggressive emails to your employees out of the equation by using Social Horse Power.  Social Horse Power is the revolutionary social media app that allows you to control the message, the timing and more importantly the results of your social media efforts and market your business to your employee’s social networks.

Watch This Video:

You were born ready? No surprises there then. But? But what? Let me guess …

You Have No Plan for Content Creation and Sharing

You’re about to construct a huge virtual machine that encourages people to share your corporate message.

You need oven-ready content, fresh and fit-for-purpose. Period.

According to the Content Marketing Institute, “Content marketing works best when you target a very specific group of people with a very specific story. The smaller the niche you choose, the better”.

A great place to start is with Social Horse Power. Your employees and brand champions are exactly that and not social media experts – but our Social Horse Power Social Media Mangers are! Content creation is what we do! We have in-house content writers who write and post engaging content – we’re already doing it for hundreds of clients.

Social Horse Power allows you to write fresh and engaging content and send it out to your employee’s social networks. Every post will be consistent, on brand and scheduled to go out at the right time.

You can also get your staff to produce articles, blog posts and success stories. You’ll be amazed at how creative your team can be when given a free hand. Now feed in relevant articles and posts from around the internet. People are more likely to share material that they wrote or discovered themselves, and your champion can screen everything before it’s made available for sharing. Let them show you what they’re capable of…

So now you’ve got something to say, let’s go for it. But … what now?

You Don’t Know How to Measure Employee Advocacy Results

Facebook insights and Google Analytics are a good start, but…

If you can’t measure how well it’s working, what exactly is the point of investing time, money and serious effort into defining objectives, appointing a champion and organizing content for your people to share? As a minimum (and we do mean minimum) you need to know in real-time:

  • How many times people share every piece of content
  • How many clicks are generated from the downstream networks
  • Which networks amplify your message most
  • How many registrations your shared content generates
  • What type of content works best for you
  • Which of your people are the most active and successful sharers

Measuring results can be time consuming and tedious. Do you have more important things to do and wish there was an easier way to metric social media campaign success? Social Horse Power makes it easy for you. By logging into your Social Horse Power dashboard, clicking on “Your Messages” and selecting a specific message, you can see in real-time  see which brand champion has the highest social reach and the total likes, comments, shares and clicks of a campaign – all in one place!

Develop A Better Employee Advocacy Program

Leaving your employee advocacy program in the hands of your employees can be disastrous, take control of your social word-of-mouth marketing with Social HorsePower. Contact us for more information on how to get started.

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