Employee-generated content, or EGC, is any content created by company employees that can be used for marketing or promotional purposes. It can be social media posts, blog articles, videos, photos, or any other content created and shared by employees.
With EGC, a company can build employee engagement and foster a positive company culture as employees feel more invested and involved in the company's success as their expertise and value is recognized and celebrated. This can ultimately increase job satisfaction and employee retention.
EGC also has a significant impact on content marketing strategies as employee advocacy programs can reach a wider audience and build stronger customer relationships in the process. It also allows companies to showcase their unique culture, values, and team, which can further differentiate them from competitors. This article will show you the ins and outs of employee advocacy so you can inspire your team to start creating their own content for the benefit of everyone involved.
Mastering the art of a winning employee-generated content strategy
There are many surprising benefits of employees posting on social media. EGC is an effective way to communicate the culture and values of a company, increase brand awareness and engage employees. However, creating a successful EGC strategy requires specific steps to achieve these goals.
Set your goals and objectives
The first step is setting goals and objectives for the EGC program. It is essential to determine the purpose of the program and the desired outcomes. The goals may include increasing employee engagement, attracting new talent, or building brand awareness. Once the goals are defined, an action plan can be developed to achieve them.
Identify the content creators on your team
Next, it is crucial to identify the employees who are best suited for content creation. Not all employees are comfortable producing content, and not everyone has the same level of skill. Therefore, it is important to identify employees who are passionate about the company, have talents in writing, photography, or video production, and are respected by their peers. These employees are more likely to produce engaging content.
Establish your content guidelines and tone of voice
Establishing content guidelines and policies is another critical step. Clear guidelines should be provided on what types of content are appropriate and what is not. In addition, a tone of voice that reflects the company's culture and values should be established. Employees should also understand their rights and responsibilities when creating content, including copyright laws, confidentiality agreements, and ad disclosure requirements.
Give employees the tools to succeed
Providing employees with the tools and resources for content creation is essential if you want to produce high-quality content. If they’re creating video content, they will need access to cameras, microphones, and editing software (unless they’re starting small, then they may just be using their smartphones).
Aligning employee-generated content with your brand
Aligning EGC with your brand is crucial to maintaining a consistent brand voice across all digital platforms, such as social media and blogs. After all, consistency is key to building brand recognition and loyalty.
To achieve this, providing clear guidelines and instructions to employees on the brand's voice and messaging is necessary to ensure that all content is aligned with the overall strategy.
While consistency is important, brands should also allow employees the freedom (within reason) to express their distinct viewpoints and opinions – it’s what makes EGC so captivating after all. It also makes the content more genuine and authentic, which will strike a bigger chord with the audience than a carefully aligned corporate message.
With EGC, it’s all about striking a balance. Be careful not to micromanage what employees say too much or else it will all end up sounding the same – which defeats the purpose of EGC.
EGC must also be carefully managed and monitored to meet your brand's quality standards. This involves checking for grammatical errors and ensuring the content matches your messaging and values. In addition, providing feedback and guidance to employees can help them improve the quality of their content over time.
Seamlessly weaving employee-generated content into your marketing channels
Integrating EGC into your marketing channels can be a highly effective way to promote your brand and engage your audience. Here are some of the most popular ways to incorporate EGC into your marketing efforts:
- Encourage employees to create and share content on social media platforms: This includes platforms like LinkedIn, Twitter, TikTok, and Instagram. Whether it’s photos, videos, or other content, ask employees to showcase their expertise or highlight the company culture.
- Include employee testimonials or success stories: This builds trust and credibility with your audience because it gives them an ‘inside look’ at the people in your company. You could also feature employee-created content in your newsletters, such as blog posts or social media updates, to add a personal touch and make your content more engaging.
- Encourage your employees to share their ideas: Inspire your employees to create guest blog posts or contribute to industry publications if they’re interested to help increase your brand's visibility. If they’re not comfortable doing that, ask employees to share your company’s posts on LinkedIn, or become more active by liking and commenting on relevant posts.
Another tip is to create a hashtag for employees to use when sharing their content, which will not only help increase the visibility and engagement of their posts but makes it easy to search through and see posts from the past as well.
Spark a content revolution among your employees
Encouraging employee participation in content creation is an effective way to create fresh, diverse content for your brand. To achieve this, you need to foster a culture of content creation that engages employees.
One strategy is to communicate the value of EGC. Show them why they should care by going over how it not only benefits the company but them as well. Share success stories of influencers and thought leaders in your industry and how they started off by creating EGC.
You can also encourage your employees to create and share content by offering incentives and rewards such as gift cards, bonuses, or recognition at company events. This can motivate employees to contribute and show them that their efforts are appreciated.
Not all employees may have the necessary skills or tools to create content. Therefore, it's essential to provide training and support to help employees get to a level where they’re comfortable sharing online. Find out what interests them the most about EGC, whether it’s writing, photography, or video production and give them the resources they need to learn and improve. Not only will this boost their confidence in their content creation abilities, but it will also motivate employees as it’s an investment in their own knowledge and skillset that can help them outside of work, too.
To create and foster a culture of content creation, let your employees share their ideas and collaborate with others. This will eventually generate new content ideas and build a sense of community among employees.
Tackling the trickiest roadblocks in employee-generated content
EGC can potentially increase engagement and improve employee morale but if it’s handled the wrong way, it could backfire. Here are some common challenges that companies face when implementing an EGC strategy and how to overcome them.
Managing time and workload
A major challenge of EGC is addressing employees’ concerns about time commitment and workload. Employees may already be at capacity with their regular work responsibilities and find it difficult to allocate additional time for content creation.
To address this concern, you can provide your employees with guidelines on how much time should be dedicated to EGC. As previously mentioned, you can also offer training and support to help employees create content more confidently and efficiently.
Having a good work-life balance
Another challenge for employees is maintaining a balance between work responsibilities, content creation, and their personal lives. That's why EGC guidelines should contain clear expectations that provide employees with a flexible schedule that allows them to balance everything effectively.
You also need to consider that employees may be hesitant to share their content out of fear of criticism or judgment. To overcome this challenge, create a safe and supportive environment that encourages employees to share their ideas and perspectives.
Gauging the game-changing impact of employee-generated content
Measuring the impact of EGC is critical for understanding the effectiveness of your employee advocacy program. There are several ways to measure the effects of EGC. One way to do so is to track various metrics, such as likes, shares, and comments. Most social media platforms track analytics automatically and for free, such as Facebook Insights or Twitter Analytics.
These metrics can help you determine the reach and impact of your EGC and understand what types of content resonate with your audience.
You can also monitor referral traffic and conversions to see what the EGC has done for you, such as the number of visitors who signed up for a newsletter or made a purchase after clicking a link in the EGC. One of the most popular platforms for this is Google Analytics and it’s free. This will help you determine the effectiveness of EGC in driving traffic and conversions.
In addition to tracking engagement metrics and referral traffic, evaluating employee satisfaction and involvement in the program is essential. Surveys and feedback sessions, which can be as easy as creating a free Google Form, can help you better understand how your employees feel about the program and whether they are motivated to continue creating EGC. Higher employee satisfaction and involvement indicate that your program is achieving its goals.
Leveraging LinkedIn for employee-generated content
Leveraging LinkedIn for EGC can be a powerful way to increase brand awareness, establish employees as new thought leaders, and generate leads – especially for B2B. Here are some ways you can use LinkedIn to maximize the impact of your EGC:
- LinkedIn Sales Navigator is a tool that lets you search for prospects based on job title, industry, and location. You can use Sales Navigator to find potential customers who are active on LinkedIn and likely to engage with your EGC.
- Your employees can be your best brand ambassadors on LinkedIn. Encourage them to share EGC that aligns with their interests. This can increase the reach of your content and attract new followers to your company page.
- A strong LinkedIn personal brand can help your employees establish themselves as thought leaders in their respective fields. This can make their EGC more impactful and increase the likelihood that it will be shared and engaged with by others on LinkedIn, eventually boosting your brand awareness.
Enhancing your social selling efforts with Employee-generated content
Social selling is a strategy that involves using social media platforms to interact with prospective clients and establish connections that could eventually result in sales. To effectively enhance your social selling efforts using EGC, empowering your employees to engage with prospects and customers online is important.
Empowering your employees here means enabling them to be active on social media and engage with customers by liking and commenting on posts, sharing relevant content, and answering questions. You can also share or repost your employees' content on your business' official account to highlight the EGC. This will help establish your employees as trusted advisors to your customers and build strong relationships with your target audience.
EGC can also be a powerful tool for building trust and credibility with potential customers.
For example, by sharing content demonstrating their knowledge, employees can establish themselves as trusted voices in their industry. This can also help brands establish themselves as leaders in their respective industries.
The golden nuggets: Unlocking the full potential of employee-generated content
EGC is any type of content created by employees of a company, often for marketing or branding purposes. EGC can include social media posts, blog articles, videos, and more. Here are some key takeaways about harnessing the power of EGC:
Reaping the rewards of employee-generated content
- Authenticity: EGC is often more authentic and relatable than content created by a company's marketing team.
- Cost-effective: EGC can be a cost-effective way to create content for a company's marketing strategy.
- Employee engagement: Encouraging employees to create content can improve employee engagement and satisfaction.
- Brand advocacy: EGC can help turn employees into brand advocates as they share their positive experiences and insights about the company.
Strategies and best practices for employee-generated content
- Encourage participation: Make it easy and rewarding for employees to participate in EGC initiatives.
- Provide guidelines: Provide clear guidelines and expectations for what type of content is appropriate and how it should be shared.
- Showcase the content: Highlight EGC on the company's social media channels, website, and other marketing materials.
- Measure success: Track metrics such as engagement, reach, and conversions to assess the impact of EGC on the company's marketing efforts.
EGC is expected to gain more significance as consumers increasingly value authenticity and transparency from brands. Companies may consider investing in tools and platforms to facilitate their employees in generating and distributing content. Furthermore, employees who have large social media followings can be valuable brand ambassadors. This can make EGC a crucial aspect of any company’s marketing strategy.