[01.17 | Keywords: Marketing, Branding, Employee Engagement]
Employee engagement is a property of the relationship between an organization and its employees. An ìengaged employeeî is one who is fully absorbed by and enthusiastic about their work and takes positive action to further the organizationís reputation and interests.
Time and time again it has been shown that “engaged employees” are extremely beneficial to a business.
- They have fewer absences.
- They have fewer safety incidents.
- They are loyal, stable employees.
- They are more productive.
Bottom line, businesses with engaged employees not only have a better working environment, they perform better as well.
Unfortunately, more than 85% of HR and business leaders surveyed by Deloitte cited a lack of employee engagement as the top issue facing them today. It’s an expensive problem, costing employers tens of thousands of dollars annually.
When a customer has a positive interaction with an employee who is passionate about his/her workplace and product, the customer’s overall experience improves, leading to repeat sales, word of mouth recommendations and higher engagement levels through digital media and social networking sites. Customers want a good experience. When they get it, they’ll be fiercely loyal to a business.
So, how do you get your employees to become more engaged? Set clear goals and expectations and encourage open communication. Provide the training, tools and support necessary for them to excel at their jobs. Actively promote your organization’s values and ethics, and make sure management is leading by example. In the end, you should do whatever’s necessary to build the type of place where people want to work. Only then will your employees become engaged.
Employees have the most credible voices in your organization. They are the face of your business and should feel compelled to represent the business as if it were their own. This is where employee advocacy comes in.
Employee advocacy is the promotion of a company or organization by its staff members. The best possible results from advocacy come from an engaged workforce.
Employee advocacy is a terrific way to get your message shared through social media, raise awareness and reach new audiences. While word-of-mouth marketing is nothing new, employees (not customers) spreading the word to their personal social networks is a new, proven marketing tool.
A Weber Shandwick study found that 98% of employees use at least one social media site for personal use, with 50% already posting about their company. Employee networks have built-in trust and authority that a brand page would have to work harder (and spend more) to achieve. As a result, employees can play a powerful role in building your brand and should be part of the overall marketing strategy.
Roughly three out of four adults are on social networking sites today. These people say they are four times more likely to buy a product or service when they are referred to it via a social network. However, only 2-8% of employee social networks overlap with brand networks. In other words, only a very small percentage of your employees’ friends already see messages from your business. This is why it is important to have employees participate and engage on social media as brand ambassadors.
People trust friends, family and peers more than any other information source. According to a Nielsen study, 84% of consumers value recommendations from friends and family above all forms of advertising.