In our introduction of this series, we provided a high-level overview of how to implement a successful employee advocacy program. But today, it’s time to get specific – why you need an employee advocacy program, and what the first step is to getting there.
A few reasons why employee advocacy is a must:
- 82% of buyers say they trust a company more when its CEO and senior leadership team are active on social media (Source: War of Words: Myth-Busting Social Media, SEO & Content Marketing)
- Companies with engaged employees outperform those without by up to 202% (Source: Gallup)
- 78% of salespeople using social media outsell their peers (Source: Forbes)
- Highly engaged organizations also can reduce turnover by 87% and improve performance by 20% (Source: Corporate Leadership Council)
- 77% of consumers are more likely to buy a product when they hear about it from friends and family (Source: Nielsen)
As we’ve discussed previously on the blog, employee advocacy programs can support a variety of business goals, from sales revenue to event registrations.
Before you roll out a full-fledged employee advocacy program, you’ll want to first identify your brand’s priorities and determine how an employee advocacy program can support those goals. Here are a few goals to consider:
- Increase site traffic by 5X
- Increase leads by 25% and decrease cost per lead by 13%
- Increase brand awareness by 14X
- Increase company content amplification by 11X and content engagement by 700X
- Drive 20-50% of overall event registration
- Increase employee optimism about company future by 27%
- Increase employee productivity by 12%
As you develop goals and objectives for your new employee advocacy program, here are a few considerations to keep in mind:
Step one: Identify the department-specific goals driving the program. These can include:
- HR & Company Culture: Let proud employees endorse the company as a great place to work and help with recruiting.
- Social Selling: Establish and extend relationships with prospects and customers on social media.
- Lead Generation: Increase sales leads and conversion by having an always-on marketing channel.
- Brand Awareness: Humanize your brand and increase awareness through your employees’ authentic voice.
- Event Promotion: Drive more registrants and attendees to webinars and events with real-time sharing
Since employee advocacy programs are not just for the marketers, it’s important to identify the specific KPIs that could impact each department, and optimize your opportunity for success. Check out our Making the Case for Employee Advocacy eBook for further guidance.
Step two: Measure your program. Employee advocacy is a journey that will scale with and enhance your brand over time. We suggest starting out with KPIs that you’ll be able to measure right off the bat – increased engagement and content amplification are great places to start. Once you’ve achieved your desired KPIs in terms of engagement, start measuring things like number of, and cost per lead. Keep in mind, measuring your program is an ongoing and evolving process.
Step three: Integrate your program with existing initiatives. Are any of these goals being addressed by other existing initiatives? If so, identify where there is overlap, if both initiatives are needed, and where they can enhance one another. When implementing a multi-faceted marketing strategy, it’s important to ensure that they’re complementary and working in a synchronized fashion.
Now, this is just to get started. In order to reinforce the value of an employee advocacy program, you’ll need to ensure that your program strategy continues to align with corporate objectives as they evolve.