The following excerpt is from an article written by Rick Delgado and published on Social Media Today. Rick offers great ways that businesses can get their staff engaging on social media in order to draw the attention of both potential customers and future recruits. This is especially important for college stores who have student employees; having them engage on your pages encourages student customers to do the same! Read his full article here.
Social media is being expanded beyond the social media specialist to every employee in a company. What is driving this change? One reason is that corporate messages don’t resonate as well with customers as comments from their friends do. Thus, turning to employees to talk about their personal experiences working with the company helps to provide legitimacy to posts about the company, as well as significantly increase the scale of the company’s social outreach.
So how can you go about turning your workforce into brand evangelists?
1. Create a Framework
Sending out a general email asking employees to start talking about their work on their Facebook page probably won’t yield you a lot of results. Instead, start by creating a social media policy that encourages employees to use social media and provides guidelines on appropriate topics to talk about. If your company is going to participate in specific social media activities such as a Twitter chat or creating content on LinkedIn, invite employees to participate in those events specifically. Be sure to provide training to employees on the policy, as well as how to use accounts for those who aren’t familiar with a particular platform. Most importantly, offer employee rewards for workers putting in the extra effort to promote the company, and also set specific consequences for inappropriate behavior.
2. Make it Easy to Connect
Make it easy for employees to connect to each other online by creating a Twitter list or a single Facebook page or group that everyone is connected to. Adding industry experts and customers to this group can help employees to start interacting quickly, and by connecting with each other, employees are more likely to share the fun stuff that is going on at the office, which makes the company more appealing to consumers and potential recruits.
3. Use Your Experts
Social media is all about two-way interaction, and employees are a huge resource for companies that are seeking to respond to questions and comments that customers have. Businesses should document which employees can be used as experts in specific subject matters as well as which employees are most active on social media in order to assign specific workers to certain social media inquiries.
By setting some guidelines, businesses can quickly turn their workforce into brand evangelists and subject experts on social media. The increased legitimacy with customers and better customer service will make the extra effort worth it.