Relationships Matter: Why Every Marketer Should Become a Social Leader

September 3, 2014

A brand is a promise; a good brand is a promise kept.

-- Muhtar Kent, CEO of The Coca-Cola Company

Today, social media is an integral part of how brands keep their promises. To succeed, marketers have to act as Brand Champions on social media and invest in listening, sharing and engaging. In addition, we’ve seen that the more you invest, the more likely it is that your relationships will thrive. This has always been true for personal relationships, and now more so than ever, it’s also true for the relationships businesses have with their customers and employees.

Recently, in partnership with Altimeter and Brian Solis, we released exclusive research* highlighting the benefits for companies and their employees to be socially engaged and what we can learn from the most socially engaged companies today. Find out who made the list and the research conclusions below.

In a nutshell, engaging on social media pays dividends.

Take charge and set the standard for social engagement within your company. Below are a few key takeaways from our research to get you started:

1. Empower your employees to be brand ambassadors.

The most socially engaged companies leverage their core values to empower employees to be brand ambassadors. It all begins with authentic, meaningful engagement and content. Set the standard by publishing content of your own on LinkedIn and encouraging employees to do the same; share that content from your LinkedIn Company Page and internally to boost further sharing.

2. Use social media to foster relationship building and pride.

Social engagement builds pride among teams and helps strengthen relationships, with 59% of socially engaged employees using social media to build relationships within the company. This also expands to include relationships outside the company, with people in their networks, including customers and prospects.

 3. Leverage social media to boost your competitive advantage.

From attracting top talent to closing deals, socially engaged companies are distancing themselves from conventional companies in their industries. We learned that 20% of socially engaged companies are more likely to retain talent. More so, 58% are more likely to “feel LinkedIn has allowed their company to attract great new talent.”

Of course, we can’t discuss social without bringing out the inevitable question of return on investment (ROI). If you measure ROI by sales leads, we discovered that 57% of employees at socially engaged companies are more likely to “feel LinkedIn has allowed them to get more sales leads.”

So what are you waiting for?

We designed a playbook specifically for top executives to enable deeper engagement with your customers, employees and peers on LinkedIn. Inspired and validated by the profiles of the most successful leaders on LinkedIn, the Executive Playbook outlines 12 key steps to empower you to become a social leader. Download the Executive Playbook today.



LinkedIn and Altimeter Group conducted an online survey of two employee groups about their participation on the platform: a “target” (N=1,460) and a “control” (N=1,378) group. The target group respondents were from the top 100 most socially engaged companies on LinkedIn. The control group respondents were from the general user base of employees whose companies are on LinkedIn. Only companies with more than 1,000 employees were surveyed.

The Socially Engaged Companies were defined as those companies with the highest combined scores of Talent Brand Index, Content Marketing Index, Social Selling Index, and Employee Engagement on LinkedIn.