Falling engagement on shared content and limited participation within the organization are some likely concerns for those who have managed to launch an employee advocacy program. These concerns could not only mean a financial loss for the organization but also a missed opportunity for branding in the digital sphere.
Brands increasingly understand how employee advocacy brings a slew of benefits at a relatively modest cost. No wonder, it is emerging as a preferred way of raising brand awareness, reaching out to a wider audience and attract new talent. However, to reap these benefits to the fullest, it’s key for the brand to avoid certain pitfalls.
Let’s have a look at some mistakes to avoid while planning and executing an employee advocacy program:
1. Relying solely on rewards and incentives:
Would you rather have an employee share original insights and observations with peers in the industry or mindlessly share content to avail a widget or gift card? The way you structure incentives for the program can make all the difference. Rewards and incentives are a great way to generate interest in a newly-launched employee advocacy program.
However, they can also drive the program away from objectives in the long run. With rewards for meaningful engagement, you can help passionate employees grow and benefit the organization in the process.
2. Pushing employees to share self-promoting pieces of content:
This is an easy trap to fall into if brands approach employee advocacy just as another paid marketing channel. Employees may be often coaxed into sharing branded content that doesn’t really provide a lot of value to employees or their network. Thus, this can only lead to diminishing returns for the program.
To make employee advocacy work, it’s important to let employees remain in charge of their content feed. The organization can instead focus on educating employees about content forms that work the best and providing an array of content that they would be interested in sharing.
With Engagelyee Connect Hub, users have access to trending social content related to a variety of topics.
3. Not spending enough time on developing a strong content strategy:
Content is king, especially in an employee advocacy program. Quality content is essential to driving social media shares, conversions and eventually, the success of an employee advocacy program. Designing a coherent content strategy begins with understanding your employees, collating sources of content and integrating relevant content pieces on the advocacy program platform.
4. Promoting the program among uninformed employees:
A program designed to leverage enthusiasm among employees isn’t really going to work in an organization with a high number of uninformed employees. It is therefore important for organizations to make users familiar with the benefits of participating in the program.
5. Incorrectly assessing the outcomes of the program:
From time to time, taking stock of the program is important to make sure it is on the right track. When it comes to tracking the success of the program, metrics like user engagement, the number of clicks, shares, likes, traffic, referrals to the brand website, sales and brand mentions on social media are the most important.
In a nutshell, there are quite a few ways an employee advocacy program can fall short of desired goals. Those supervising the program will have to be involved every step of the way to make it successful. An engaging program will enable employees to become thought leaders and in the process, this will be an avenue of growth for the organization as well.
Being aware of the pitfalls and working on them can facilitate a win-win situation for the organization as well as the employees in an employee advocacy program.