Gagen MacDonald and APCO Worldwide recently launched this fantastic infographic that does a great job of delineating an overlooked aspect of social media engagement – the benefits of internal social media to a company and its employees.
As readers of my blog know, I’m a huge champion of brand definition and purpose because that enables a company to be more meaningful to its customers lives. But too often brands fail to ensure internal alignment around a purpose, core values or mission, which means customers often hear one thing from a brand but experience another from its employees. Gagen MacDonald and APCO Worldwide do a great job of a teasing out where to start and what to focus on internally to avoid this pitfall.
What stuck me about the first section below if how how executive leadership accounts for employees perception of internal communication. At 75%, it is critical to get leadership buy-off on the need for a social media ecosystem within the company itself. It will not position the brand to be social with its customers but set a powerful example for employees to invest in social media training and engagement themselves.
In the next section, it’s critical to note that a company’s employee base – like its customers – is a media-savvy audience that judges the effectiveness of internal social media. That judgment, in turn, affects the ability of a company to attract top talent as potential employees who know only too well that a successful company must also be a social engaged company.
Finally, I have isolated the top five criteria for effective internal social media as defined by employee. What could be more important to a company that the ability to attract and retain top talent, to collaborate and innovate more effectively, and to generate business referrals. Each has a direct bearing on the ROI of social media and the productivity of a company’s workforce.
Armed with such insights, here are the steps you must take to adopt, integrate and proliferate internal social media to build employee satisfaction and your company’s bottom line.
1. Consolidate C-suite internal social media commitment
2. Establish a clear social media protocol/crisis policy
3. Share this policy with all employees across all divisions
4. Provide employees with organic social media training
5. Create a collaborative, cross-division culture that communicates using social media channels
6. Create a coordinated content calendar across different social media platforms
7. Grant employees social engagement permission and reward their participation
8. Integrate traditional, online, social media efforts to ensure a consistent customer experience
What would you say is the major obstacle to internal social media at your company? What would be the greatest benefit?