Employee advocacy programs live and die by the content employees are asked to share. If you have a program that is showing stagnant, or worse, no participation, the most likely culprit is bad content. Remember, employee advocacy isn’t about commandeering your employee’s social channels to push through loads of whatever content you want to ship. Employee advocacy is about inspiring your employees to advocate on behalf of your brand. Selecting the right employee advocacy program content topics is what delivers the jolt of inspiration that makes an employee advocacy program a success.
To identify which content topics employees most engaged with, we lifted the hood on SocialToaster’s top employee advocacy programs and pulled apart the motor to see what makes them run.
According to the Edelman Trust Barometer, “Employees rank higher in public trust than a firm’s PR department, CEO, or founder.”
Even if it’s the same piece of content, your potential customer or new employee would rather hear it from an average employee than any other person in the company. If you want your employees to start sharing more of your content (regardless of the topic) be sure to keep these general recommendations in mind:
- Make your employee advocacy program content topics and the advocacy program itself fun (or at least not feel like more work)
- Make the content being shared relevant to the company, the industry and the employee
- Reward employees for actively participating in the program
- Create a culture of sharing in the office by highlighting employee accomplishments in advocacy program content
- Get employees in the habit of participating and sharing content in a timely manner
The Top Four Employee Advocacy Program Content Topics
1) Job Openings and Company Culture Highlights
The average cost for a company fill an empty position is $4,000. Between job boards, recruiters, consultants and more, hiring a new employee is an expensive endeavor. Your employees present an opportunity to share an open position without having to spring for that paid Indeed campaign. Further, 47% of referral hires say they have greater job satisfaction and stay longer with the company, meaning less turnover and less need (and cost) to hire.
On top of posting open positions, your employees can do even more to support your recruiting needs by sharing content that showcases your company culture. Do you have a yearly softball tournament? Provide regular lunch-and-learn sessions? A bring your dog to work day? Regardless of the specifics, by sharing posts tied to your brand’s culture, you can establish a reputation with your employee’s social networks. This way, when a job opening becomes available, your employee’s network is already excited and familiar with everything your company offers.
2) Industry News
Third-party content is a must for any successful advocacy and social media content strategy. It can’t always be about you, or people will get burnt out. Mix up your content strategy by incorporating industry-relevant third-party pieces. This is an excellent opportunity to highlight vendors or partners that help push your business forward.
Curate content relevant to your industry and have your employee advocates share that content with their network. You’ll benefit from the exposure while your employees build a reputation for themselves as having their pulse on the market. Remember 62% of users engage with content that they find informative and inspiring.
3) Company News
Utilize your advocacy program to share the latest company news with your employees. If you’ve landed a new client, won an award, or gave a hard-working employee that promotion, be sure to push that news through your employee advocacy program. These types of “good news” stories tend to receive higher than average engagement levels on social media channels and also help build the morale of the sharer.
Employee advocacy programs can also be used to help build awareness of upcoming product releases or new services being offered. Work with your sales team to develop announcements that support their social selling initiatives
4) Content Marketing and Thought Leadership Pieces
From blog posts to Ebooks, your employee advocacy program is a perfect amplification tool to spark awareness and engagement. For best results, start by segmenting your employee advocates by function and role.
For employees that are actively pitching new business, you’ll want to be sure that you are providing them with content marketing pieces that push potential customers further along the path to conversion. Give them decision making or problem-oriented white papers and Ebooks that, when properly shared, help to start buying conversions.
Repeat after us: don’t make your average HR, accountant or service representative share hard-sell content. Instead, provide them with content and thought leadership pieces that help to elevate the employee (and the brand) in the eyes of their network. Your employees are constantly cultivating an online presence with their friends and colleagues and these individuals want to know how their job and career are progressing. Give these employees content that helps them tell their best story.
Employees Are Not Auto-Posting Robots
We repeat: employees are not auto-posting robots. You need to earn their share by providing content that inspires and excites.