Wednesday, August 26, 2015

2015: The Year of SM #EmployeeEmpowerment and How to Create a Successful Program

2015 - the year of social media employee empowerment
As 2015 is shaping up to be the "Year of Employee Empowerment" in social media more and more companies are wondering how they might benefit. 

Social media employee empowerment programs are proving highly successful at brands such as Lenovo, Oracle and Cisco where employees using their own social networks effectively become brand ambassadors.

Increased reach and engagement are just two of the often-cited benefits for brands. But how do you set up an effective employee empowerment program? 

During a recent Brandwatch webinar called Social Monitoring & Gamification: Creating Employee Advocates at Cisco (the slides from the webinar are here) Brandwatch’s product manager Caroline Goodwin outlined one possible approach: 

Raise awareness of the value of social. She said organizations can do this by:
  • Putting social up on screens in the workplace where everyone can see social activity around the brand and its products and services.
  • Using reports to regularly show employees at various levels what is happening with social efforts and how they help the brand.
  • Integrating social facts and figures for the brand with other numbers employees are more comfortable and used to seeing such as sales figures or call numbers. 
Enable your employees by:
  • Training them and providing tips and guidelines about what kinds of information can and can’t be shared about and around the brand. Also share how social media efforts are measured.
  • Promoting the type of content you’re hoping employees will share, the hashtags your brand prefers and any tips on the ways to share content from the company website.
  • Collating all of your employee’s social handles so you can accurately track their efforts. Goodwin says the surprisingly easy way to do this is to "just ask" for each participating employee's social handles.
Encourage healthy competition by:
  • Creating a table showing who has the greatest impact (either by using an existing commercially available tool or creating your own measurement) that looks at frequency of sharing, numbers reached, and numbers of responses and re-shares. 
Harness the power of your advocates by:
  • Planning ahead, for example, by giving your employees a heads up on an upcoming marketing campaign and share the relevant hashtags and links to the content that will be going out in the near future.
  • Monitoring results by tracking specific links and hashtags and who is sharing them and how far they are going. Brands can also keep the momentum going by providing very regular updates to employees during the campaign so everyone feels involved.
  • Recognizing all participants once the campaign is over and sharing its success with all. But then also recognize the most successful social media advocates.
So that’s one approach to employee empowerment in social media, what about others? My next post will look at that and provide links to some great thinking around the whole topic.

Related posts
Employee empowerment drives massive social media results for brand 
Social Media Employee Empowerment - What Works

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