We find ourselves at a time when one way communication has become a thing of the past. Before, companies would transmit certain information to their clients who would then absorb this information and in turn buy the product or service being offered.
However, consumers have changed over time and receiving only information is no longer enough for them to believe in the product or service. Therefore, one of the challenges facing businesses this year is to be able to transmit the values of the company and get the consumer to trust the brand, in other words, humanize the process in order to connect with the needs of the user which then makes them identify with and want to acquire the product or service.
How do we achieve this? Through the employees and a new corporate culture: “Employees are the company´s main assets and the best ambassadors for the brand”. At the end of the day, a company is nothing without a work team behind it who helps it to “stand out.” In fact, according to data from Barómetro Edelman Trust, 41% of users think that employees are the most credible source of information for businesses.
As a result, a new concept arises which will become a part of Human Resource trends.Let´s talk about employee advocacy, a term that is already very popular in the United States.
This concept refers to the promotion and advocacy of the company image by way of employee networks, mainly social networks. We therefore improve the company´s image with the goal of attracting new clients, improving employee commitment and increasing consumer loyalty. This is why the employees are the best ambassadors for the brand.
An employee who acts as an ambassador for the brand:
1) Generates positive exposure for the company and creates awareness of the brand by way of their own social networks because they have come to truly love the brand.
2) Recommends the company´s products or services to friends and family members
3) Represents the company´s interests both internally and externally
4) Can help to build an atmosphere where the employee feels, acts and promotes the company as if it were their own.
5) Becomes an expert in the company´s products and services which makes them a credible advocate and spokesperson for the organization.
All of this translates into two key words: Reach & Veracity. The employee interacts within social networks that the company would not otherwise interact in, increasing the company´s reach. In fact, according to a study done by Cisco the employees have 10 times more followers on social media than corporate networks do.
With respect to veracity, it has been demonstrated that 90% of people trust the recommendations of those whom they are already know. According to data from Nielsen, leads that are generated through social media have a conversion rate of 7 times higher than other leads.
This data demonstrates the effectiveness of “word of mouth” generated by employee advocacy. However, this is only true as long as the employee doesn´t end up putting their personal mission before corporate objectives or even worse; becomes unmotivated with work and begins to speak badly about the company.
How do you implement an effective “employee advocacy” process in your company?
1. Show your team practical work conduct with respect to using social media and create awareness of the type of situations that could produce risk. That way, you clarify the difference between situations in which they are talking explicitly as personal experts about an unrelated work topic or when they are speaking on behalf of the organization. The ramifications of and disciplinary action for the misuse of modes of social communication should be clear and each employee who participates in the employee advocacy program should be aware of the policies.
2. Set goals and guidelines. Determine what you want to achieve, how you want to achieve it, where and what to share and how far you want to go with the information. To do this, you must provide company information adequately for the employee. Keep in mind that if the employee´s department is economics, they wouldn´t be motivated to share information about the law department. In other words; know your employees and motivate them accordingly.
3. Don´t force them to share. Let them decide when they are ready to share the information and become advocates for the company. In the end, making your brand stand out will be more credible if the employee believes in what he is promoting. The implementation of good practices can help with this task.
4. Use an adequate platform that will truly be in charge of developing and disseminating this content. At Wonnova, we help you through Woost Ambassadors, a customizable tool that allows you to humanize your product, improving commitment from your employees and encouraging them to speak well about your brand through social networks.
Your employee will then stop feeling as though they are misleading people and come to believe that in fact, they are really doing something valuable for the user and your brand will therefore gain the best results!
“Your brand is your company culture and your company culture is your brand”