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What Is Employee Advocacy and Why Is It Important?

The Human Resource and marketing departments must embrace employee advocacy fully to achieve some of the organizational objectives. Although employee advocacy has been with us for a while, the changing technology has revolutionized it and brought about various changes. 

All employers should understand the changes that come with employee advocacy since they bring new possibilities. You simply have to rethink the way you have been managing employee advocacy and improve your success potential.

Employee Advocacy Definition

Employee advocacy is the use of an employer’s workforce to promote a business. Usually, employers use their workers to raise awareness about their brands on social media and other preferred platforms. The employees will also be expected to have your company’s interest at heart and represent it internally and externally. 

Additionally, an employer advocacy program also requires your employees to market your products and services not only to potential clients but also to friends and family members. Therefore, they act as your company representatives and must carry themselves with integrity.

Employee Advocacy Examples

There are many ways or forms in which employee advocacy can take place. Here are the most common ones that employers prefer. 

  • Having an employee’s image and information about a project they are working on added to a company’s website will help attract job candidates. The employee’s information will guide the job applicant to consider applying for a job in your company.

  • Encouraging your employees to tweet about your company’s culture will attract the right audience, whether clients or job applicants. Use leaderboards to list the names of participants and the rewards given to keep them motivated.

  • Business image sharing is also another employee advocacy example. Encourage them to share the company’s T-shirts, caps, water bottles, pens and more to have clients remember every time they need a service.

  • Encourage employees to share your company’s latest news and blog posts on their social media accounts, including Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

Why is Employee Advocacy Important?

If you are wondering if employee advocacy is important, well, it is, especially with the hiring market becoming more competitive than ever. The majority of employers nowadays resort to employee advocacy programs, and the good news is that such employers will reap long-term benefits. Here are some of the benefits of employee advocacy. 

  • Increase Brand Awareness and Social Media Engagement

Employee advocacy on social media will gain more response than marketing your business through your own company’s social channels. People know that any marketing from a company itself is basically to attract customers and make profits.

However, if you use your employees for marketing, the chances are that friends and family will believe them. Other social media users will also trust your employees because customer review is essential in any decision making, and who else to believe if not your ambassadors. 

  • Improves Business Culture

A few years back, some employers believed that offering attractive employee compensations will retain employees and build a robust culture. However, whereas having a strong culture is essential in employee retention, benefits and compensation are not enough.

Having employee advocacy programs is the way to go for any business culture growth. Engaging your employees in organizational matters will make them feel valuable, thus increasing loyalty and retention.

  • High Productivity

Employee advocacy helps you reach a wider audience, and whether you are recruiting or marketing a new product, you will be able to achieve your goals within a short timeframe. 

For example, if you are using employee advocacy for recruitment, you will build your brand as an employer. This will attract top talent who are dedicated and committed to producing results. Through this workforce, the organization will be more productive hence stay on top of the competition. 

  • Cost-Effective

Marketing your brand using corporate marketing firms is relatively expensive. However, employee advocacy is cheaper since you can only compensate your employees for any successful marketing plan. 

The most efficient way of succeeding in employee advocacy is by identifying the most suitable employee advocacy tool and assigning specific employees to each tool for quick and efficient results. 

How to Implement an Employee Advocacy Program

Whether you own a small business or run a large enterprise, you should know that every employee has the capability of marketing your business to the outside community.

Through employees, millions of individuals might receive the information that you are trying to convey. That is why you need to follow the steps below on how to implement an employee advocacy program.

  • Have clear goals and expectations of the company: The employees must be notified of these expectations and goals so that they may be able to know what you aim to achieve. 

  • Work on better communication: Communication is key in an employee advocacy program, and you must make sure the internal communication department assists you with motivating employees.

  • Specify the Policies and Procedures: You want your employees to market your employer brand using defined policies and procedures to understand what actions to take. So, be specific about what needs to be done and let them handle the rest. 

  • Implement an Employee Advocacy Tool: Having the right employee advocacy tools will get the best out of your program. With advocacy tools, you can manage your advocacy program activities efficiently and effectively. 

  • Measure the program Success: You can measure the success of your employee advocacy initiatives through innovations such as AI in some of the modern employee advocacy solutions. 

  • Train Employees: If you are using an employee advocacy tool, make sure that you teach your employees how to operate the tools. You cannot assume that they know how to manage the tools since it may lead to some of them abandoning the program. 

Employee advocacy in HRM is essential, and you need to give it a try if you have been struggling with your marketing needs. Engage your workforce and improve communication for a successful program.

Additionally, simplify the employee advocacy program so that your ambassadors will focus on the main goal rather than the challenges. Let your advocacy program generate awareness, build your employer brand, generate leads, attract quality talent, and create a robust business culture.

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