If you were to scan your employees’ social media accounts, what would the average number of connections per network be – 200? 300? More? Anyway, why is this important?
It’s important because, in addition to the exposure gained through brand communication on social media and other online channels, your employees’ connections represent a significant window of visibility. Let’s say the average number of connections per social network is 200. That means that if 500 employees were to share 15 posts, you could potentially reach an audience of 1.5 million.
However, additional visibility is just one reason for engaging employees on social media. Another factor, and one that is arguably more important, is the influence your employees can yield. Contrary to what you might think, this has nothing to do with the size of their audience.
Expert, Unique Insights – and Not Just for Marketing
Your employees know your company better than anyone else, so they are in the best position to drive brand awareness on social media. They can share expert insights into particular products and services, answer questions raised by prospects and customers, and talk about what it’s like to be a part of the organization. The value they can bring to brand communication therefore goes beyond marketing, beyond visibility, and can, according to their expertise, concern recruitment, customer service, prospection and client retention.
Trusted Communication, Valued by Decision Makers
As highlighted in this infographic, social media audiences trust user recommendations more than traditional advertising. The very fact that employees have a working knowledge of your company – including product use cases, client success stories and differences with regard to competitors – makes them all the more valuable to business decision makers. Not only are the latter conducting more and more research on social media, but when they do so they look to connect with individuals with whom they can interact on a one-to-one basis, and from whom they can glean personal, valuable information.
The additional visibility gained by engaging employees on social media is significant, and cannot be ignored. But reach aside, the incentive for empowering employees relates to influence which, rather than a numbers game, is all about impacting other people’s choices – whether you’re addressing a single person, or hundreds. So even if your employees don’t have thousands of followers, their knowledge of and experience within your company means the influence they have is considerable.
If you like this, you’ll love Why You Don’t Need to Be an Influencer to Have Influence