Employee advocacy has been around for a while, but its popularity didn’t really grow until the advent of social media—where anyone and everyone can share thoughts and information with one another quickly. Although you might have a digital marketing strategy in place with a fair-sized budget, you may want to consider an employee advocacy program to help get the word out about what your organization provides to the community. In fact, according to EveryoneSocial, an employee advocacy program costs one-tenth of paid advertising and has a greater reach than messaging shared by the organization itself—a 561% increase in reach and an engagement eight times greater.
What Is Employee Advocacy?
When it comes to spreading the word about your organization and all the amazing programs, events and camps it has to offer, sometimes your employees are your best advocates. Through promotion of your organization, employee reach is far greater and means even more to those who see it than if the message were shared by the organization.
Advocates within your organization share positive experiences about working for your company in person or on their social media accounts. They share information about camps, programs, events and more, and they can help answer general questions about your organization. If they don’t have the answers, they can easily point those in your community to the right people.
If you want to start building advocates within your organization, a good way is to incentivize. Gift cards and free lunches are welcome incentives to get employees interested in advocating. Once you have a fair amount of advocates, you can then give bonuses or even more gift cards to those that are performing well and receiving high engagement.
Benefits of Employee Advocacy
As social media has grown tremendously, so should your organization’s presence on each channel that resonates with your community. Sure, you have a business page and invested in paid social campaigns, but word-of-mouth is so much more valuable—even when comes from your employees.
It is likely that your employees have quite a few friends and followers within the community on their social media accounts, and those followers and friends are interested in what your organization has to offer. The best way to get information to members of your community while also saving marketing dollars is through your employees.
Organic reach has gone down greatly over the years. For business pages alone the average reach has been reduced to 5.2% for an organic page post, as social networks have monetized with paid ads. Through employees, that reach can increase significantly—by 561%! Community members trust what your employees are sharing—it provides more value to them as it comes from people they personally know. In fact, according to Sprout Social, people are 16 times more likely to read a post from a friend than from a brand.
Attracts New Business
Your community trusts your employees, as they are likely people they actually know and members of the community themselves. So if your employees are sharing information about a program or class that your organization offers, it’s possible you’ll receive new business as a result. Word of mouth has a big influence, and if members of your community are hearing about your organization’s offerings organically, they’re more likely to sign up/purchase a class or membership.
How to Implement Employee Advocacy
The best way to implement and integrate employee advocacy is through communication. Set up a meeting, and make your employees aware of what employee advocacy is, the incentives and how they can help. Send out emails about the things you would like to be shared within the community, and make sure to include links so they can easily share on their social channels. Be detailed and informative, and always be available for any questions your employees may have. Be proactive!
Make Your Employees’ Lives Easier With ACTIVE Network
Give your employees more time to focus on advocating about your organization in person and on their social media channels with ACTIVENet. Our recreation management software can help free up admin time so employees can do what they do best: serve the community. From activity registration to membership management, ACTIVENet makes it easy. Connect with us today to see how ACTIVENet can set your organization up for success.