The most powerful aspect of any organization is its employees. A successful company thrives on the actions of its team. By adopting a sustainable brand advocacy program, businesses are able to drive active employee participation and use their existing networks of contacts to promote the services of the company.
Brand advocacy is dominating 2018, and it will continue to dominate in the years to come. The reason is quite obvious – brand advocacy allows businesses to achieve more while investing less.
The idea here is not just getting started but how to build a sustainable brand advocacy program so that you can maintain your brand's goodwill by leveraging the power of your employees to promote your brand effectively and authentically.
Building a brand advocacy program in 6 steps
Step 1: Decide on brand priorities
Prepare a list of your priorities that you wish to achieve from your brand advocacy program.
Ask the following questions to yourself:
- What is the vision of your brand?
- What are your brand’s objectives for the next 24 or 36 months?
- What are the KPIs that you wish to track?
- How will you measure performance?
- Which resources do you want to utilize for maximizing the impact of your brand advocacy program?
- Have you visualized how your program will effectively fit into your content marketing strategy?
Step 2: Select a group of good candidates
You can’t force each and every employee to become your brand advocates. A better approach is to define a group of potential candidates who show potential to become your brand advocacy superstars. Find employees who take initiative in sharing your company’s blog posts and are enthusiastic about delivering the brand message.
Also, give them ample leeway to promote your services at their preferred time. Do not ask your employees to provide a daily report on this. Keep track which employees are already active on social media and who regularly share your brand message. Support and provide incentives to employees who are most actively sharing your brand idea across their social networks. This will encourage other employees to dive in and start sharing your brand services and announcements.
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Step 3: Educate your employees
Unless your employees are fully educated about the services of your company, they won’t take any initiative to promote your products or services.
Here are some strategies that can help:
- Hold brainstorming sessions and invite your team to share their ideas.
- Host a get together each month to share important company updates so that all your employees are on the same page.
- Offer prizes to your top employee advocates each month. This will encourage them to share your company’s content with their family and friends.
- Create events on social media and ask your employees to share them.
- Host webinars for employees in different cities or countries and educate them about your company’s services and achievements.
- Run an employee spotlight series and share them across all your company social media accounts.
Step 4: use the right tools
To build a well-informed and influential workforce, you need to make use of tools that can keep the employees informed about the latest news and updates. Smarp is one such tool that lets you build an influential workforce. Here are the top features offered by Smarp:
- Using topic-specific feeds, Smarp makes it easy to ensure that the right content reaches the employees most likely to be interested in it.
- Employees can participate in creating and submitting good content for admins to approve so peers can share.
- With the help of intuitive news feed, employees can discover new content, interact with each other and share the knowledge.
Step 5: Ask for feedback
Feedback is extremely important to create a sustainable brand advocacy platform.
Always ask your employees to share feedback on the company’s content and products with the help of tools like SurveyMonkey. This tool lets you spot trends and create visual charts that can help you identify areas that deserve improvement.
Asking for feedback will make your employees feel more involved and appreciated.
Moreover, it will help you to create better products and your employees will feel more valued sharing products that are loved by your customers.
Step 6: Measure the impact and reinforce the habit
Always measure the results of your program. Adopt a policy that sustains and expands over time.
- In order to reinforce the habit of brand advocacy, create a social media policy that offers specific guidelines on content sharing.
- Always reward employees who actively participate in sharing company content.
- Maintain consistent communication among all your departments.
- Track the KPIs you created in Step 1 above and optimize their performance.
- Track the impact of the program on the organic traffic and leads.
Your employees are actively present on social media and adopting a sustainable brand advocacy program is one of the best ways to generate higher brand awareness and improved organic traffic.