Chances are you already know the importance of an active social media presence for engaging your end-customers. But if your internal communications are only focused on emails, newsletters and an intranet, you’re missing a major channel that really allows you to engage and connect with employees. In fact, a recent study by email marketer Poppulo found that 80% of employees said email overload is a problem in their organization, and many would like to reduce its constant flow. Internal social media is not just a way for your communications team to share updates and news, but can also bring employees closer to their employer, enable collaboration and help them to become brand ambassadors.
Here are six reasons to use social media for employee communications:
- Communicate quickly and effectively – Social channels allow employers to communicate more immediate, shorter bursts of information, whether publicly or privately. Links or directions can tell employees where to learn more. Real-time communications are also ideal for sharing facts needed to halt rumors and for responding to urgent employee needs or concerns.
- Promote your brand and products – We all want our employees to be brand advocates, and social media provides a great opportunity for them to do just that. It’s so easy for employees to share or respond to a company post, providing you with expanded reach into their individual networks. Each share, like or comment gives your company a wider audience, which can ultimately generate leads and turn leads into customers.
- Reinforce corporate culture – The majority of employees are no longer working in a corporate office five days a week, which makes it challenging to share and influence corporate culture. Using a clear, consistent voice on social media (both internally and externally) allows your employees to absorb the corporate culture without even realizing it.
RELATED: Four ways to ensure your internal brand communications are heard in today’s work environment
- Discover and share internal expertise – You probably wouldn’t allow anyone in your company to send out companywide email blasts on any topic of their choosing. But on social networks, blogs and forums, employees can freely share questions and answers and showcase their own knowledge. Such idea sharing fosters creativity and innovation and allows you to identify employees who have special areas of expertise.
- Recognize employees – In the era of the personal brand, people want to be publicly admired and praised. Social media provides an opportunity to recognize your employees in a manner that they can instantly use to build their personal brand. Maybe it’s time to bring back “employee of the month” or another way to share your employees’ accomplishment and encourage high performance.
- Communicate on their terms – According to a Governance Studies at Brookings report, millennials will comprise more than one of three adult Americans by 2020 and 75% percent of the workforce by 2025. Most have spent the majority of their lives with a social media presence and expect communications to be engaging and two-way. And engaged employees are always a competitive advantage, regardless of their generation.
From Facebook and Twitter to YouTube and blogs, social media can be a very effective corporate communications tool. Employers can deliver their messages in ways that are easy for employees to understand and retain, ultimately maximizing communications goals and truly engaging employees.
Author: Estera Hayes