The Business Benefits of Greater Employee Advocacy
August 25, 2016
Businesses from mom-and-pop shops to the enterprise level are beginning to take a genuine interest in their employees and entrusting them to be more active on social media. That’s good for employees—sharing smart content builds their professional reputations. And it’s also good for business.
Employee advocacy refers to companies empowering their employees to share content with their networks. At first glance, it might seem like a metric that pays off in “soft benefits” like good feelings. While there are indeed plenty of feel-good reasons to boost employee advocacy, there are also quantifiable business benefits.
Let’s take a look at some of the ways employee advocates make your business better, then examine how you can boost your employees’ passion and commitment to sharing content.
1. Employee Advocates Are More Connected to Your Audience and Extend Your Reach
Employees who actively advocate for their organizations are playing to a much wider audience than the brand itself. In fact, on average, a company's employees have ten times as many connections as a company has followers.
And this is not just beneficial for the reach of your brand. According to LinkedIn, people who share content regularly grow their networks four times faster than those who do not.
2. Employee Advocates Increase Your Brand Engagement
Without active, engaged employees sharing your brand messaging, it won’t go much farther beyond your channel audience. Even a small percentage of employee sharing can have a drastic impact on your brand’s reach:
- Only 3% of employees share company-relevant content, but they drive a 32% increase in engagement
- Employees get two times higher CTRs from their shares, compared to company shares of the same content
3. Employee Advocates Are Better Brand Ambassadors
Customer-facing employees are direct representatives of your brand. With the continued prominence of social media, even those whose roles don’t directly deal with customers are making an impact. Studies have determined that 70% of customer brand perception is determined by experiences with people.
Engaged employees have the passion to provide better customer experiences, the knowledge to drive better interactions, and are empowered to take action. They are far better stewards of your brand’s reputation than less-engaged employees.
4. Employee Advocates Help a Business Grow
So what happens when your employees are actively advocating for your brand?
It has a direct positive impact on the bottom line. The Engaged Company Stock Index tracks the long-term results of a portfolio of companies with high engagement. For the past four years, the Engaged Company Stock Index has outperformed the S&P 500 by over 20%. That’s not surprising, given that companies with good engagement can generate two and a half times more revenue than their disengaged counterparts.
How to Support Employee Advocacy
Equipping your employees with the tools and encouragement to share brand content can reap great rewards for your organization. Here are some tips to help foster sharing:
- Make it easy to share by using an employee advocacy platform, such as LinkedIn Elevate.
- Empower employees to represent the brand in interactions with customers and on social media by setting sharing guidelines.
- Foster confidence by providing education on how sharing impacts employees’ professional brands.
Fostering employee advocacy benefits your employees, your customers, and your business. Its effects are far-reaching, and can be measured in concrete terms such as increased reach, higher engagement, and increased company followers.
LinkedIn Elevate is a platform that helps you achieve these goals by empowering your employees to be brand advocates and share quality content with their networks. Learn more about LinkedIn Elevate.