The Real Reason Employees Aren’t Sharing Your Content
By Anja Skrba
Author: Anja Skrba
Many of us have heard the proverb “there is nothing new under the sun,” which reminds us that no matter how ingenious our innovations, they’re almost always based on something that’s been around longer than we’ve been alive. Like many things, this logic holds true for content marketing.
The reason content marketing has been around for so long is that it works. But like any trend—technology or social—it also follows the typical S-curve of channel maturation—which means that it was most effective in its early days and has become less effective as more people jump on the bandwagon. That’s not to say, “content is dead,” but recognize that, as the environment has become saturated, for content marketing to be effective requires buy-in and distribution from multiple sources, including your in-house employees.
The Case for Employee Advocacy
One particularly impactful way to increase the reach and effectiveness of your content is through employee advocacy: getting employees to share your brand’s content through their personal social media channels. A quick look at a few stats illustrates just how powerful that can be:
- 84% of consumers say they trust recommendations from people they know more than they trust advertising. (Nielsen).
- A brand message shared on an employee’s personal social network is reshared 24 times more than when the same content is posted by the brand. (MSLGroup).
- 98% of employees use at least one social media site for personal use, of which 50% are already posting about their company (Weber Shandwick).
The Infrastructure is Already There
Taking advantage of pre-existing resources is a smart move for any business. And when it comes to pre-existing resources, your employees’ social networks are low-hanging fruit: 98% use at least one social media site. And yet, according to Weber Shandwick, only about 50% occasionally share their employers’ content.
3 Reasons Why Your Employees Aren’t Sharing Your Content
That’s a huge gap (and opportunity), and it’s causing businesses of all sizes to ask the same question: Why?
1. They Don’t Know You Want Them To
When you live and breathe content marketing and social media, it’s easy to assume that employees know you’d be thrilled for them to share the content you’ve worked so hard to produce. But they probably don’t.
2. They Don’t Know They’re Allowed To
It wasn’t so long ago that an employee could be reprimanded—or even lose their job—for talking about their employer without authorization. That was a job for lawyers and PR pros. For many companies, it just hasn’t occurred to them to tell their employees that the rules have changed.
3. You Haven’t Asked
Even employees who aren’t worried about the repercussions of sharing public-facing company content may not realize that you want them to share content.