How Can I Motivate Our Employees to Post Content on Social Media?

Last week, Jim Woolfe, tagged me on a Linkedin post that asked the question

How can I motivate our employees to post content on social media? 

Jim answered as follows ....

I agree with him 100%. 

Now let's take a step back here.

Picture this: 

You are at a conference or exhibition and you walk in and you see the company stand from a business you want to buy from.

As you walk over to the stand, one of the salespeople, walks up to you and slaps a brochure on your chest and walks off.

Then another sales person does the same, then another does the same ..... and all you do is take the brochures and put them in the bin.

That's what you and your company is doing right now by posting brochures on social media!

Now, think what would happen if you walked up to the stand a salesperson said "hi, can I help you?" then sat down with you and they talked about their business issues.

That's the difference with just posting on social, corporate spam and social selling. 

Thanks to Eric Doyle for that metaphor. 

Why do we post on social media?

The problem we have is that people think that posting on social media is the outcome and the Linkedin post was written in this way. It isn't.

The outcome we want is conversations on social media.

We want people to post on social media, so they get conversations. Why?

Because conversations create sales, posting, by itself creates nothing for your business.

Now some marketers will start mumberling things like "clicks" "impressions", but as I say, this creates nothing for your business. Now marketers will now be mumberling about visibility, read on.

You are the world's biggest corporate spammer

If you look out across the world of social media you will see that have companies have invested $billions in applications to turn themsleves into corporate spammers.

Pumping out corporate brochures and brochureware on social media all for social media users to ignore.

In fact, by pumping out corporate posts you are training the Linkedin algorithm to ignore you and training your customers to ignore you. 

Afterall, people come to social media to be social, not read your brochures, see research here

Switch it off for a month and see if it makes any impact on your pipeline, closed business, revenue and EBITDA.

So how do I motivate my employees to post on social media?

1. Prove the personal benefits of posting content online

You can prove these until you are blue in the face, unless you back this up with a structured methodology that gives your employees the skills to do this, your strategy is based on hope. 

One benefit of using an outside company to do this such as DLA Ignite (apart from the pipeline you crave) is that your employees will see you as a great employer as you are investing in them. This helps with recruitment and retainment. 

2. Educate them about how the company benefits from their posting content online.

You will find that most employees don't care.  

When I was in a corporate role, I was asked to share corporate content and I lost followers, and we had salespeople who couldn't gain followers as nobody was interested in the corporate propaganda that was being pumped out. 

As I mentioned above, social media is about getting conversations, growth and revenue and corporate spam won't help you. The thing is, I know this and your employees know this, they're not stupid. 

3. Lead by example 

Totally agree with this, check out Cyberhawk and Display Technology it is the C-Level that is leading the push into digital. Both these companies have gained digital dominance, which means they won the digital share of voice of the products and services they sell.

They don't measure clicks and impressions, they measure pipeline, business growth, revenue and EBITDA. What they have done is implement a competitive strategy that has pushed their competition out of the digital conversation. 

4. Help them flesh out their content pillars based on their skills and expertise

You must empower your employees to create and share their own content. Why? Because the modern digital buyer is board of people "flipping" endless bits of content. Sharing a Harvard Business Review article is interesting but how many people have shared this already? Thousands.

Social media is like diversity or health and safetyyou give your employees the guide rails in which they workGet an outside organization in to teach them a methodology, what are good behaviours and what are bad behaviours. If you make this about sharing corporate content your employees will just laugh at you. 

We can come in and do an audit if you want. 

5. Encourage them to comment on other people's posts to get started.

I agree with this, but you cannot just encourage, you have to train and coach people in this. People are scared they will get fired if they do the wrong them, get a methodology, we started our 7 years ago, so we have 7 years of experience to help your employees with. 

If you start now, we are already 7 years ahead of you. Buy the expertise in.

6. Check in frequently

But don't do this by sending emails, this is a joke.  You need to make sure the people are given the coaching that they are supported and want to push the boundaries, within the guide rails you have given them of course. 

Why should you use an outside coach?

A coach helps you to understand where you’re going wrong if you’re not getting the results you expect, keep you focused (in terms of targeting and KPIs) and help you to remain motivated and is an external sounding board to help. The coach will enable the employees to

- Overcome their fears

- Be efficient in their working practices

- Enable you to take personal responsibility for their success/career/happiness

- Enable your employees to maintain the “good” behaviours

- Analyse what is (and isn’t) working

The problem with internal people is that they may be involved in the company politics. Coaches work is confidential and coachees should be able to share all aspects of their work.

7. Share training resources

Nobody will watch them. If you share video training on computer based training (CBT), nobody will watch it. This is about a change in habit and a change in mindset. Research (and any learning and development person will tell you) shows that sharing training materials do nothing to create change. 

8. Celebrate them!

Great advice. But not in "round robin" emails, nobody reads them. Turn up to team meetings and celebrate them on all hands calls. 

Related: Why Nobody Is Engaging With Your Content

As a leadership team, what is your legacy?

Social is not about posting, it's about conversations. This race for "visibility" is just a race to be the biggest "corporate spammer". Do leadership teams really want their legacy to be their industries biggest corporate spammer?