Here at Scoop Social, we see Employee Advocacy a little differently.
For us, Employee Advocacy is more than just an innovative new platform or a new way of thinking about Social. We see it as a Tipping Point; a Tipping Point at which the Marketing agenda will shift from – ‘doing a great job with the brand despite what’s happening inside the company’ to ‘doing a great job with the brand because of what’s happening inside the company’. Employee Advocacy has arrived at a time where we acknowledge the ability of the consumer to ‘lift the lid’ on what’s going on in our organisations. It has arrived at a time when employers and employees are already exchanging phone numbers without the intervention of third party recruiters etc. It has arrived when, in truth, we already have a market environment where ‘Truth not Spin’ defines the road to success for growing brands and businesses. On so many levels, you would think that the Tipping Point must surely have been reached long ago….
‘Truth not Spin’ defines the road to success for growing brands and businesses.
Yet despite all these things, we still see Social Media Policies written to police rather than empower. We see organisations more fearful of the consequences of engaging in Social than they are excited by the opportunity. We see senior execs writing Vision and Values pieces that seek to steer rather than inspire their employees. We see a climate where the desire to ‘manage perceptions’ still holds sway over the desire (or will) to change the reality of what’s on offer.
Against this backdrop, we believe that Employee Advocacy, or specifically the opportunity that it affords to companies and brands who fully leverage its potential, will provide a breakthrough.
Here we have a tool that in a disarmingly simple way, can enable an organisation to add literally thousands of highly credible voices to cloud of commentary that surrounds that organisation, what it does and the category that it’s in. Employee Advocacy costs relatively little to set up. Run well, it can be largely self-fuelling…gathering a momentum of its own. It has an inherent authenticity that is hard to match at any level in the Social media environment. And all the while it’s running, it is in itself, contributing positively to company Culture. It’s a win-win on so many levels it is remarkable that no-one thought of it earlier!
Its power comes from the combination of scale, reach and authenticity.
Suddenly, the ability to have large numbers of your employees directly influencing the purchasing (and/or career path) considerations of customers (and prospective employees) is real….not just for the service and B2B industries for whom it has long been the lifeblood of success. Now almost ANY business can mobilise large numbers of its people to bring direct influence to bear on prospect customers and recruits.
But to seize this opportunity means more than simply implementing an Employee Advocacy program. (Though there will undeniably be great benefits derived from so doing.) To truly leverage the competitive opportunity afforded by having a large body of your employees connecting in social media on behalf of (or at least in relation to) the organisation they work for, you need to have your employees positively engaged with the organisation. You need to have a Culture that’s fit for Social.
And that’s where the Tipping Point gets reached…
To gain competitive advantage in Social, particularly when leveraging Employee Advocacy, we need to focus on what’s happening on the inside, rather than on what’s wrapped around the outside of our companies and brands.
We need to think about building competitive advantage….from the inside, out….
..and in the process, start transforming Employees, into Social Champions – creating superheroes for the organisation and its brands.