We recently had the pleasure of co-presenting a webinar with LEWIS Global Communications. Our VP of marketing, Dave Hawley, was joined by Michael Brito, Head of US Digital Marketing for LEWIS Global Communications and author of several books, including the soon to be released Participation Marketing: Unleashing Employees to Participate and be Brand Storytellers.
During the webinar, Michael shared how he and his team at Lewis utilize Dynamic Signal to share their brand’s story. In addition, they’ve taken their own learnings from employee advocacy and applied it to consulting their clients on how to successfully launch employee advocacy programs of their own. “The more engaged employee are, they more they’ll advocate for your brand and share your brand’s story,” says Michael. “The key to communicating well with externally — with customers and partners — is communicating well internally with your people.”
All brands have the power to build a sense of community within their companies through storytelling. By inspiring your employees to advocate for the brand, you can have hundreds to thousands of storytellers who are on-brand, informed and aligned with the company mission. Here are 4 ways Michael recommends to get started:
1. Know your audience: Each social media channel is a little different. While the audience on Instagram expects to see delightful visuals, the business audience on LinkedIn expects professional advice. Create an editorial framework for how your brand’s storytellers will use content to engage different audiences on different channels.
2. Define the guiding principles: Delivering the best employee experience should be the focus of all employee advocacy programs. The experience should make advocating for the brand easy, memorable and enjoyable for employees, with relevant content and a framework by which to measure success.
3. Identify employee segments: Different teams across the organization will have varying interests in the kinds of content they’re willing to interact with or share. While the sales team will want content that can help them engage customers and prospects, human resources will want to share job openings. Separate the content types by various channels based on interest groups.
4. Train employees on advocacy: Not all employees are content creators, some will be more interested in joining a conversation or simply listening. To be successful, you should build training curriculum based on the audience’s level of participation.
Content creators: Develop training based on thought leadership, blogging, video and events.
Conversationalists: Create training material based on best practices for community engagement and provide value-add content for participation.
Listeners: Train this group by focusing on tools they can use to listen to brand and industry-related conversations.
These are just four ways that brands can get started with launching an employee advocacy program within their company. There are many creative ways that brands can achieve their goals with employee advocacy — from driving leads with social selling to increasing employee retention with engaging content. To learn more about how to launch an employee advocacy-drive brand storytelling program at your company, listen to the full webinar.