Marketing today means using as many viable channels as possible. It’s all about reach and communicating strong, persuasive and useful messages to grow your business. Which is why employee advocacy has become such a strong tool for brands.
What does employee advocacy look like?
According to Hinge Marketing, 58.8% of employees in formal advocacy programs spend over 5 hours a day focused on social media for business purposes. They share curated content with their social networks and answer questions about your brand and products/services.
More web traffic. Greater brand recognition. Increased content downloads. Shortened sales cycles. The list goes on.
The Key to Employee Advocacy Success
It’s a simple idea, employee advocacy. While simple enough, it takes more than just social media participation by your team to make it work. You need a strategic approach and the right tools.
In this blog post, we’re sharing 10 of the top employee advocacy tools you should consider.
Top 10 Employee Advocacy Tools for Brand Growth:
EveryoneSocial boasts an impressive combination of features. You’re able to use the tool to empower sales, drive external and internal communication and leverage employees to source new talent.
Sales teams are able to leverage social selling and can keep track of content directly through Salesforce. This allows sales to participate with prospects, generate and track leads seamlessly.
Other integrations include Marketo, LinkedIn Sales Navigator, Bitly and Adobe Analytics.
Users are able to easily share content from within the application and with followers and friends on Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, WeChat, and more.
Use leaderboards to influence and increase employee advocacy on social media. You’re able to track and report each employees performance and produce reports that can be shared via email or mobile app.
Learn more about EveryoneSocial
PostBeyond is an employee advocacy, social selling and employer branding (social recruitment) solution. It also includes a set of integrations to help brands that want to leverage social.
PostBeyond integrates with Salesforce, Bitly, Office 365, MailChimp and Marketo. These integrations allow for smarter marketing decisions and seamless sales processes that support social selling.
Content Curation and Sharing
Similar to other tools, PostBeyond allows admins to curate content for users to share. In PostBeyond, you’re able to create topics that users can turn to for content.
Social Selling and Content Storage
PostBeyond’s social selling module comes with a nifty marketing funnel content selection tool. The tool enables sales to take social selling to the next level by helping them serve up content according to the awareness, consideration or decision stages prospects may be in.
It’s no secret that finding and retaining the best talent has become increasingly challenging. As more people use social media to find more promising career opportunities, the requirement for brands to better position themselves has also solidified.
PostBeyond’s approach to helping brands attract the right talent is to alleviate the pressure on HR leaders. This is accomplished by empowering socially engaged staff to promote the companies they work for.
Advocates are able to share social posts that promote their employer’s culture. This enables them to show the human side of businesses while also appealing to the career aspirations of hungry professionals.
Analytics functionality includes tracking engagement from various social platforms. You can measure website traffic, earned media value (what you might have paid for the amount of exposure your advocates generated) and lead generation activity.
Gamification and leaderboard
PostBeyond also helps brands foster healthy competition. Advocates are able to track how well they perform on a leaderboard.
Learn more about PostBeyond
Employee advocacy is a very real and very viable solution for brands. It’s a smart way to promote what makes your business special and support revenue growth. But to do both, you need to use software that will give you the features and functionality to share, track and measure your efforts.
Being able to manage the messaging your staff shares about your business may seem a little daunting. Thankfully, some really smart features streamline the process within Social Reacher.
Staff can easily pick and choose where they want to promote branded content. Social Reacher has also included handy email and Chrome Browser notification options, making it even easier to alert your team when new content is ready to be shared.
Campaign Design and Content Creation
Social Reacher gives marketing managers the ability to create impactful campaigns. To start, you’re able to invite collaborators according to age, gender and follower count. You’re also able to set a date by when campaign collaborators must publish content.
Collaborators are then able to personalise their messaging. They can use hashtags, tweak copy and provide links and other multimedia content their followers are likely to find appealing.
Tracking the success of your campaigns is possible through Social Reacher’s dashboard. It’s clean and shows:
- Participation: how many published, shared and pending posts
- Gender: how each gender group has promoted content and engaged with it
- Reach: how well content your collaborators publish is performing
- Age: age groups of your audience
- Clicks: the total number of clicks
- Interests: which topics your audience finds appealing
Data and metrics don’t stop there. You’re also able to track the success of your campaigns over time using built-in reports.
While the notion of leveraging your employees and their networks seems appealing, human beings, by nature, are wired to look for upside. Social Reacher’s made a smart move by including the ability to incentivise staff.
Notice that one of your ambassadors is sharing content consistently and generating tons of shares and engagement? You can quickly reward that behaviour with anything from a day off to tickets to an event. The reward options are all dependent on your budget and corporate policy.
Learn more about Social Reacher
Sociabble has aptly dubbed their solution as a tool that “allows you to strike the perfect balance of brand, third-party, and user-generated content (UGC), as well as combine internal and external communication.” And we think they’re onto something.
Like Social Reacher, Sociabble includes gamification as a key element of their platform. And we think it’s a smart idea. Incentives drive behaviour.
Sociabble takes things a little further, though. They’ve introduced social selling as a feature. Teams are able to lean into true social selling by making recommendations and demonstrating expertise. But what we’re pleasantly surprised by is your ability to track lead generation and that originates from social selling.
Sociabble is more than an employee advocacy tool. Along with social selling ability, the also offer Social Wall, a real-time aggregation of all content your brand produces for website visitors to view.
Content Aggregation, Curation, & Creation
There is more information and noise available today than ever before and social media is a big contributor. Sociabble’s solution is Channels. They are themed and based on preference, allowing you to segment content and sources.
Gamification and Engagement
Your users will be able to get even more excited about promoting your brand’s content. Sociabble offers the following to help you increase engagement:
- Automatic & custom newsletters
You’re also able to customise all gamification features by group.
Easy Access and Administration on the go
Sociabble also provides Android, iOS and Windows Phone apps. This makes it easier for you to keep tabs on how well your campaigns and team are performing.
Analytics & Performance Tracking
We’re fans of data and analytics dashboards. Sociabble offers users access to personal dashboards along with unique metrics for social sellers. Administrators are able to get more specific data on content performance, including lead generation tracking.
User Sharing and Interaction
Users are able to like, share and modify content for both internal and external usage. All user activity is also available in a real-time feed.
Learn more about Sociabble
OKtopost, while also an employee advocacy tool, it offers a little more. Oktopost also includes social content publishing, listening, analytics, governance and integrations with marketing automation tools and CRMs.
This makes the tool all the more valuable, especially if you’ve been looking for a way to bundle all of the above.
Easy Content Sharing
Employees are able to discover, filter and share your pre-approved content with their networks via desktop or mobile app.
Oktopost provides a leaderboard where employees can track their performance and you can identify top promoters.
Like Sociabble, Oktopost also includes social selling functionality. You’re able to gather stats on leads generated, clicks track the impact each employee has on your social media goals.
Learn more about Oktopost
Ambassify has done a smart job of highlighting the three most important aspects of brand advocacy. Their solution is designed to help brands identify, interact and activate, measure and reward.
As a solution, Ambassify isn’t just an employee advocacy tool, it can also be used as a customer advocacy solution.
Identify and Recruit
You’re able to identify top promoters and invite them to join your community. Once a part of your community, brand advocates can then be segmented into groups.
Participation and Gamification
Ambassify provides over 20 campaign types. These are used to promote content and also inspire your advocates to share it as much as possible. Campaign types can be tied to rewards that are issued upon completion of all task for a campaign.
Analytics and Insights
You can gather insights as your content is promoted. You’re also able to take that information and use it to refine campaigns and create more appealing rewards for advocates.
Learn more about Ambassify
There’s definitely something appealing about LinkedIn Elevate. While it doesn’t allow you to share and track content beyond the LinkedIn, that doesn’t seem to feel like a negative. LinkedIn is known to perform better than other social platforms when it comes to conversions, and we imagine that somehow positively influences performance for Elevate users.
Curators are able to provide employees with a collection of pre-approved content to be shared on LinkedIn. Elevate can also be used to share internal communication with your team.
Broadcast and Share Content
Users can pick and share content published on their companies Elevate feed.
Analytics and Reporting
Reporting isn’t limited to admins. Users are able to access insights on how well their shares and broadcasts perform. This includes tracking reach, engagement and trends as they develop.
Locating the right content can be tough, especially on social media. Elevate enables admins to edit content topics. This makes it easier for staff to locate all sorts of content that’s relevant for quick sharing.
Learn more about LinkedIn Elevate
Hootsuite has been around for a while and so it made sense that they would introduce an employee advocacy solution of their own. If you’re familiar with Hootsuite, you’ll be pleasantly surprised at how easy it is to use Amplify.
Creating, Curating and Sharing Content
Amplify can be added directly to your existing Hootsuite dashboard. This makes managing brand advocates, the content they have access to and other features straightforward. Creating content takes place in the same way as in Hootsuite’s original social platform with a few added features for curators.
As an admin user, you can set topics for types of content that is appropriate for different employees. You’re also able to update live content (does not update already published advocate posts) and create drafts or schedule posts for later.
Amplify also gives users the ability to recommend content to admins.
Manage Brand Advocates
Admins can issue invites to staff from within Amplify and also assign them to specific groups. Groups are to ensure that Amplify content is kept relevant for specific people and their audiences.
You can also remove advocates easily or add them to however many groups you choose.
Amplify allows admins to measure social post impact, user adoption and engagement for Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter.
Learn more about Amplify
Smarp is an employee advocacy, communication and experience solution. It allows businesses to address all three business needs through a clean and well-designed interface.
As an employee advocacy solution, it packs all the features you’ll need to share your brand’s messaging, and a few more.
Integrations go a long way when it comes to employee advocacy tool. Smarp gives brands the ability to link their Active Directory databases to simplify user management, use Zapier to connect with thousands for other apps, and embed Smarp news feeds within their intranet or CRM.
Content Discovery and Sharing
Smarp provides users with a central point for content discovery. Each user has access to a company feed where they can see content that is for both internal and external usage.
Smarp also makes finding content easier with channels. Using channels gives admins the ability to share specific content that is easily accessible and can be stored by users in their personal content archives.
Like other advocacy tools, admins can measure social impact, engagement and clicks via the analytics dashboard. Smarp also gives staff the ability to track their personal influence. Using a combination of a leaderboard and with a SmarpScore, an influencer grading system, your staff will be able to gauge how effective they are at promoting branded content.
Smarp adds to the gamification element by enabling businesses to issue perks and rewards to top-performing advocates.
Learn more about Smarp
Sprout Social’s known for their social media management application. As a tool, it’s one of the most robust out there, and Bambu makes for a well-placed addition. Bambu includes both amplification and social selling, both rolled into a clean and intuitive interface.
Content Curation and Sharing
Bambu allows administrators to curate content for staff to share. It also gives employees the ability to propose content using the Suggest a Story feature. Users simply enter the URL of the content they’d like to propose along with a note about why they think their audiences will find the content interesting.
Social selling involves more than answering questions. Employees need to be able to provide timely content that’s designed to support the sales cycle. Bambu’s resource database allows brands to store content for their employees to easily share when needed.
Analytics and Reporting
Bambu provides a host of analytics and reports. You’re able to tell how much reach your content is generating along with your team’s impact.
Gamification, Recognition and Incentives
Like most advocacy platforms, gamification is paired with incentives. This gives brands the opportunity to cultivate the behaviours that will propel their content to larger audiences.
Learn more about Bambu
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the benefits of employee advocacy?
Employee advocacy can help you to boost your web traffic and brand recognition. It can also help you to get more content downloads and shorten the sales cycles. Other ways that firms have benefitted from employee advocacy include: improved brand loyalty, better search engine rankings, improved customer service and higher conversion rates. What’s more, it can also help you to reduce your marketing costs. In a study completed by Hinge Marketing, only 3.5% of firms indicated that they have not enjoyed any of these benefits.
How can employee advocacy be improved?
It requires more than social media participation by your employees to improve employee advocacy. You will also need to use employee advocacy tools for brand growth. Some of the top tools that you can check out to improve your employee advocacy include: EveryoneSocial, PostBeyond, Social Reacher, Bambu (by Sprout Social), Hootsuite Amplify and SocialReacher.
Can I use Hootsuite for employee advocacy?
Hootsuite has also introduced an employee advocacy solution – Hootsuite Amplify. It can be added directly to your existing Hootsuite dashboard. If you want to create content, you will use the same way as in the original social platform of Hootsuite (but with a couple of extra features for curators). An admin user can create topics for types of content that is suitable for different employees, update live content and schedule posts for later.
How can I encourage my employees to advocate my brand?
Gamification and incentives can help you to encourage your employee advocates. You can for example use a leaderboard that advocates can use to track (and compare) their performance. This way you can quickly reward an employee with an extra day off or concert tickets for sharing content consistently. Badges can also work well. There are many employee advocacy tools like Bambu (by Sprout Social), Ambassify, and Smarp that offer gamification as a feature.
Is there a free employee advocacy tool?
SocialReacher offers a freemium plan. While their free plan is basic, it still offers a lot to help you get started. You can have as many as 25 collaborators that you can organize into 4 groups. Though, you will only be able to make 5 publications per month and connect 2 of your brand’s social media accounts. If you get stuck, access to online support is also included in the free plan.