Your Digital Reach Is A Collective Of Employee Personal Brands
You can’t be in the right place at the right time. You need to be in the right place all the time”
-Bob Benson, Mad Men
I love that quote. And I think it has a lot of parallels to today’s digital world.
In order for people to see your message on social media, you need to always have a presence.
You could try to publish 300+ times a day on your brand channels, but let’s face it, that’s just not feasible. And your audience would quickly get tired of that volume. And because of the way social media algorithms work, you’d only reach a limited amount of that audience.
But what if you COULD post on social media, over 1,000 times a day, and still be genuine? Attract a larger audience? And improve brand trust?
Your employees are your brand. Collectively, they have more reach and provide a better picture of your entire company than your brand channels alone.
Let’s look at a few stats:
- 77% of buyers are more likely to buy from a company whose CEO uses social media (Source: MSLGroup)
- Leads developed through employee social marketing convert 7x more frequently than other leads (Source: IBM)
- Sales reps using social media as part of their sales techniques outsell 78% of their peers (Source: Forbes)
- Content shared by employees receives 8X more engagement than content shared by brand channels (Source: Social Media Today)
- 92% of employees’ Twitter followers are new to the brand (Source: Cisco)
- Only 33% of buyers trust the brand whilst 90% of customers trust product or service recommendations from people they know (Source: Nielsen Global Online Consumer Survey)
- Brand messages reached 561% further when shared by employees vs the same messages shared via official brand social channels (Source: MSLGroup)
- Brand messages are re-shared 24x more frequently when distributed by employees vs brand (Source: MSLGroup)
These stats are pretty convincing to empower employees to share content on their personal networks. But let’s dig even deeper.
Target Conversations, Not Demographics
One of my good friends, Hessie Jones, CEO of ArCompany said something really interesting during a call we had that resonated with what we do at PostBeyond:
Target conversations, not demographics when it comes to social media.”
Which flows really well into a quote that Robert Caruso always says:
Content leads to conversations. Conversations lead to relationships. Relationships result in ROI.”
So how do you scale your social media presence as a brand? Through personal relationships that your employees are building. And since relationships stem from conversations, and content sparks conversation, sharing more content creates opportunities to connect.
But people, not brands, are having conversations. People build relationships with people.
So how do you empower your employees to have more conversations on social media?
Create An Ecosystem Of Social Media Relationships For Your Brand
By having the right processes, infrastructure, and technologies in place for your employees to share content, you’re enabling them to grow their networks.
When they share industry and brand content, they build up their personal brand and thought leadership. More people follow and connect with them. More people interact. Which all leads to more conversations, and ultimately, more relationships.
So suddenly, you don’t only have brand followers. You have a complete ecosystem of hundreds or even thousands of personal brands, all building relationships that could lead to opportunities:
- Attracting talent
- Media coverage
- New leads
- Business and software integrations
- Vendor relationships
- Closed deals
And many more. Everything on this list happens because of people. People in YOUR company. Through conversations and relationships THEY are having with others.
And all of this ONLY happens through personal, authentic connections.
Personalization, At Scale
There’s no better way to personalize your brand than to showcase it through your employees. Every employee has a network of people who know them and are genuinely interested in what they have to say. People don’t connect with your employees because of their status, it’s because they’re interested in their content or they know them. But they might only like your brand page because of your status.
By empowering employees to share content, you’re not just investing in their personal brands and professional development, but you’re also reaching an audience that’s much more receptive to the message.
Employees can also add their own take on the content to make it even more effective. This allows them to personalize the message based on who they are and what their connections are interested in.
So this way, you can have thousands of variations of messages being published on social media, at any single point. And do this consistently.
Invest In Your Employees, Invest In Your Brand
Enabling employees to share strategic content to their personal social networks is a win-win for everyone.
But make sure that when you’re starting an employee engagement program, you don’t make your employees feel like they’re being used only for marketing purposes.
You’re investing in their own brand, you’re giving them information, and teaching them new skills.
In return, when they do start making connections, some of those will turn into opportunities for both your employees and your company.
Do you encourage employees to share content and build relationships on their personal social networks? Why or why not? Please leave a comment below and share with your colleagues!