This week I moderated another webinar from the Social Media Today Best Thinker webinar series, this time on the topic of From Employee to Advocate: Mobilize Your Team to Share Your Brand Content. This webinar was sponsored by SocialChorus. The webinar included a superb group of panelists: Natanya Anderson, Director of Social Media and Digital Marketing at Whole Foods Market, Denise Holt, CEO and Co-Founder at SocialIntel and Nicole Alvino, Co-Founder and SVP of Strategy at SocialChorus.
Nicole got us started with a discussion of some stats from the 2014 Edelman Trust Barometer on increasing trust & engagement with employee advocates. Seems that 52% of consumers trust an "average" employee more than the CEO. This stat has grown recently up 30% from 2009. But better than that content shared by employees receives 8x the engagement of content shared on brand channels. A significant difference for sure!
Natanya took over and gave us a look at her employee advocate program at Whole Foods Market. The program has more than 300 volunteer social advocates serving up over 10,000 social interactions with a $35,000 net social value of all those advocate interactions. The audience was really interested in how to cultivate and manage all the participants so we discussed strong social media policies and ways of rewarding them that were similar to non-employee advocate programs.
Denise then completed the presentation portion of the program with her discussion of how do you assess your organization's culture to understand if you will be successful. The discussion surrounded the 4C Areas of Tension in any given organization: Collaborative, Creative, Competitive, Controlling. Depending on the mix in your organization they may be more risk adverse (more controlling let's say) and might make it hard to get an employee advocate program off the ground.
Now, if you have ever been on a Social Media Today webinar before, you know they are very "participant-driven" and we love to ask your questions of our panelists. Many of the questions from our audience revolved around topics such as: How do you recruit the advocates for your program? How do you get them to customize the content with their own personal flare? How do you control the usage of more difficult to handle tactics such as SnapChat?
If that piqued your interest, you will want to hear the replay of this webinar, please check out this link. Otherwise we hope you will join us on another Social Media Today webinar! The next webinar is on The Art and ROI of Listening: Turning Your Platform into a Marketing Machine signup or it our just view the schedule of upcoming webinars here.