Social technologies have revolutionized the modern workplace, providing employees with new communication and data sharing tools that allow them to collaborate and interact in exciting new ways. But while internal social adoption continues to grow, many organizations are still unsure how to best represent their brand in external social channels.
Luckily, the answer has begun to emerge in the form of the employee brand ambassador—a powerful asset to any organization seeking to expand their footprint in the digital bazaar.
The Important of Establishing Guardrails
In the age of the social employee, professionals have made their desire to engage online communities clear—and organizations should nurture that desire. This begins with a frank discussion about social media in the workplace, a basic social computing policy, and at minimum a basic social training program. By establishing guardrails and addressing what kinds of sharing is acceptable on behalf of the company, an organization both protects itself against any online faux pas and empowers employees to engage online communities confidently and effectively.
And this engagement is essential. Online media consumption continues to grow, and organizations must be prepared to meet their target audience on social media platforms. Social employees are ideally suited for this task—providing authentic, two-way interactions with a level of depth and nuance that traditional marketing channels (i.e., TV, radio, print) simply can’t match.
A Win/Win for Both Brand and Employee
Two primary goals of branding are building ubiquity and establishing value. Imagine an online brand presence that extends far beyond a simple Facebook page or Twitter account and becomes an environment where professionals can collaborate in virtual hangouts, lead webinars and podcasts, and share behind-the-scenes peeks into exciting goings-on within the company. In this rich ecosystem, each channel becomes a focused hub of information, connected to the larger organization but operating independently and effectively all on its own—establishing a deep, substantive brand presence rather than a one-dimensional advertising outlet.
The benefits extend to employees as well. Today, the average worker will change jobs as many as 10–15 times over the course of a career, occupying different roles and building new skill sets as they go. A socially engaged worker is a more employable worker. By engaging in online communities, they demonstrate a commitment to continued professional development and learning. In a job market where about 95 percent of all recruiters examine any potential candidate’s social media presence before even the first interview, candidates who demonstrate these social engagement skills have an instant leg up on the competition.
Join Me at the 2015 AMP Fest
Want to learn more about how to empower a workforce of engaged brand ambassadors? Join me at this year’s Amplify Festival (@AmplifyFest) on Thursday, June 4 in Sydney Australia. This public event, now in its 10th year, presents a TED-like forum to foster conversations and ideas among employees, partners and clients across industries. Click here to learn more and register for the event. Hope to see you there!
In The Social Employee, we go behind the scenes with several leading brands—such as IBM, AT&T, Dell, Adobe, Southwest Airlines, Cisco, Acxiom, and Domo—pulling the lid off the inspiring social business success stories that have propelled these companies into the 21st century. These cutting-edge brands have all come to the same realization: the path to social business lies through empowering the social employee.
“Great brands have always started on the inside, but why are companies taking so long to leverage the great opportunities offered by internal social media? . . . The Social Employee lifts the lid on this potential and provides guidance for businesses everywhere.” —JEZ FRAMPTON, Global Chairman and CEO, Interbrand
The Social Employee offers an unparalleled behind-the-scenes look at the social business success stories of some of the biggest brand names in the business world, including IBM, AT&T, Dell, Adobe, Southwest Airlines, Cisco, Acxiom, and Domo. These cutting-edge brands have all come to the same realization: the path to social business lies through empowering the social employee.
The brands that leverage their employee base in order to engage customers and prospects through social media are the ones destined to win the marketing wars. This book not only details the astronomical rise of the social employee, but also outlines the innovative methods that leading companies have employed to foster cultures of enthusiastic and engaged workers.
AFTERWORD by Kevin Randall, Vice President of Brand Strategy & Research at Movéo Integrated Branding, and journalist for The New York Times, The Economist and Vanity Fair.