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Mar 31, 2021

Approx. 12 min. read

Top 8 Employee Advocacy Examples You Should Check Out

In this blog, we will present 8 great employee advocacy examples from which you can learn about the power of advocacy in driving better marketing...

In this blog, we will present 8 great employee advocacy examples from which you can learn about the power of advocacy in driving better marketing performance, generating new sales, and improving your employer brand. 

💡 Before we move forward, check out our new employee advocacy ROI calculator for brand awareness, social selling, and social recruiting. 

employee-advocacy-program-benefits

What is Employee Advocacy and Why Is It Important?

Employee advocacy is a form of brand ambassadorship in which employers engage their employees in promoting the organization's products, services, and organizational culture. 

Even though the benefits of employee advocacy are inevitable, 80% of employers have not yet implemented a comprehensive brand advocacy program.

Most likely, this is due to employers being unsure about how to create and manage successful employee advocacy programs, inability to motivate employees to participate, or because of the lack of leadership support and buy-in. 

To get the buy-in, use the existing research that proves the effectiveness and ROI of employee advocacy in the workplace

Here are just a few powerful statistics you can start with:

  • According to Edelman Trust Barometer, customers perceive staff as more trustworthy than corporate marketing. Additionally, 77% of consumers are likely to make a purchase after hearing about it from someone they trust.
  • According to Entrepreneur, social media content shared by employees gets 8 times more engagement than content shared through the brand’s own social channels and is shared 25 times more frequently.

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  • According to Fast Company, leads developed through employee social marketing convert 7 times more frequently than other leads. 
  • Another research proved that 84% of people trust recommendations from people they know more than any other form of advertising. 
  • According to LinkedIn research, companies whose employees share their brand’s social content see a lift in the views that their job postings receive. 

Creating and managing successful employee advocacy programs is not easy. However, there are great employee advocacy examples out there that can help you get ideas about how to engage your employees in advocacy initiatives. 

Let’s take a look at them. 

💡 Also learn about what is advocacy marketing and how to get it right

8 Inspiring Employee Advocacy Examples

Organizations that engage their employees in word-of-mouth marketing are seeing incredible results. This is particularly true for large enterprise organizations with many employees. In many cases, employees have more connections and followers compared to corporate brands. 

According to a study, brand messages travel 561% further when shared by employees as compared to when they are shared by a company’s official account. 

Moreover, their posts on social media are much more authentic and, therefore, easier for others to relate to. Therefore, it is not surprising that employee-generated content has become a big trend in employee advocacy. Employers are now empowering their employees to create their own content about the company and share it on social media. 

💡 Related: Employee Advocacy: Importance, Challenges and Best Practices

So what are some of the best employee advocacy examples implemented by some of the world’s leading brands?

Starbucks

Starbucks is doing a great job in inspiring, enabling, and motivating employees and other stakeholders as brand advocates. The company has recognized the benefits of investing in staff initiatives to build engagement within the business as a way of building a strong brand.

In order to motivate and enable its people to be true brand advocates, Starbucks heavily invests in its people’s growth and development. 

As Starbucks’ VP of Marketing said:


“We’ve up weighted our commitment in the training and development of our people because as brand ambassadors our partners must truly embrace the values of our company.”


starbucks-employee-advocacy-example

Why do we like this employee advocacy example?

Starbucks is a perfect example of the importance of employee training about how to be a brand ambassador. They even have publicly available social media guidelines for their employees. As a consequence, employees know exactly how and what type of content to create and share from their personal and corporate social media profiles. 

Furthermore, one of the tactics used in Starbucks’ promotion strategy is to refer to its employees as “partners”, which gives employees a sense of belonging to the brand.

Their employees across the world are actively engaged in promoting the organization's products and their positive organizational culture with their own networks. 

Last but not least, Starbucks offers a great example of how to centralize employee-generated content. It has created employee partner accounts on various social networks enabling employees to post pictures, stories, and discussions about the company. Their employees’ Facebook page enjoys more than 380,000 followers, and their Instagram page 139,000 followers.

🎧 Also tune in to our podcast to learn about the importance of business communication in driving employee advocacy. 

 

💡 Also learn about the top 5 communication skills and how to improve them

KPMG

In 2017, KPMG Sweden discovered an untapped opportunity to engage their employees in driving more company awareness, improving marketing and sales metrics, and enabling their employees to act as though leaders in management consulting. 

Soon after the launch of a new employee advocacy solution, KMPG saw impressive results in many different business areas

KMPG-employee-advocacy-example

Why do we love this employee advocacy example?

KPMG's advocacy program is a perfect example of the extent to which employee advocacy can impact various business aspects. More precisely, after the implementation of the advocacy program, the organization managed to:

  • Improve internal communication by encouraging employees to have discussions around the latest company news and industry trends on a regular basis
  • Increase brand awareness (in less than one year, employees have generated 1.74K shares and 12.90K unique clicks. Posts shared by employees have driven 10.90K reactions on social media)
  • Strengthen the company's brand and business growth by encouraging employees to share informative and engaging content on a regular basis
  • Build a pool of high-quality job candidates by boosting the company's employer brand

Just by taking a look at KPMG's Facebook page, you can see how active their employees are in sharing the organization's content with their networks. 

Google

Google is a giant with over 100,000 employees across the world, and they are doing an excellent job in empowering employees to be brand advocates. 

As one of the most important Google’s differentiation strategies is the acquisition of the best talent out there, they are particularly successful in leveraging employees in attracting the best job candidates and building a strong employer brand

Google-employee-advocacy-example

Why do we love this employee advocacy example?

Their employees are excellent at creating and sharing their own content, which makes it more credible, authentic, and attractive to potential job seekers. Employee-generated content is shared by advocates and posted on Google’s @lifeatgoogle page - an Instagram page designated to employees’ stories and work experiences. 

MuleSoft

MuleSoft provides an inspiring example of how employee advocacy can significantly impact marketing and sales performance. Before MuleSoft started looking into employee advocacy, it was on the lookout for new ways to increase brand awareness, find and convert new leads. They also wanted to expand its employees’ and executive team’s thought leadership in a smart way.

mulesoft-employee-advocacy-example

Why do we love this employee advocacy example?

After implementing employee advocacy software, MuleSoft has reduced its cost-per-lead. With employees actively sharing articles and job ads to their networks, the company is able to build credibility and thought leadership in the eyes of its audience. MuleSoft’s marketing revealed that about 20 prospects engage with the content shared by employees every month.

Adobe

Adobe’s Social Shift employee advocacy program is one of the most popular and inspiring employee advocacy examples. After realizing that employees’ activities on social media have a direct impact on the organization’s revenue and talent acquisition efforts, they decided to implement a formal ambassadorship program and train their employees across the world about the benefits and best practices of employee advocacy. 

As Natalie Kessler, Global Head of Talent Marketing, puts it:


“We wanted to make sure employees are given opportunities to become brand champions and tell the company’s story. That’s because building the employer brand and awareness means higher quality candidates.”


adobe-employee-advocacy-examples

Why do we love this employee advocacy example?

It is no secret that Adobe is doing a great job in driving employee advocacy in many different ways including:

  • Encouraging employees to create and post their own content on Adobe Life blog
  • Driving incredible employee engagement on various social media channels including LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram using #AdobeLife hashtag
  • Building a special brand ambassadorship program. In September 2014, the Corporate Reputation team assembled 21 employees from 7 different locations to take part in Adobe’s brand ambassador program. These employees were selected based on the fact they were already doing a great job sharing socially and they were asked to help tell the Adobe story.

BDO Australia

Even though BDO in Australia invests in creating great content, not all of its people were actively sharing this content, or industry-related content, with their personal networks. 

The company wanted to encourage partners and staff to use social media more actively and proactively, especially LinkedIn. The goal was to help them grow their personal brand and strengthen client relationships, all while increasing the organization’s reach and recognition.

BDO-employee-advocacy-example

Why do we love this employee advocacy example?

The results of BDO’s employee advocacy program were just impressive! Soon after the launch, the company achieved great results - within nine months, its people have generated 13.94K unique clicks, 13.70K reactions, and have reached 3.67M people on social media.

Furthermore, they have also generated positive engagement through their shares. For example, their posts have generated 4.61 clicks per share and 4.54 reactions per share on LinkedIn.

Zappos

Just by looking at Zappos’ Culture Book you can see how active their employees are on social media. This makes Zappos one of the world’s best examples of how to use employee advocacy to strengthen the brand and attract top talent to the organization

The reason why this company is seeing great advocacy results is the fact that employee advocacy was basically written into the business plan when the company was founded in 1999.

zappos-employee-advocacy-example

Why do we love this employee advocacy example?

Employee advocacy is built into Zappos’ organizational culture and core company values. The way this organization treats its employees is the main reason behind employees’ impressive engagement on social media

Check out @InsideZappos on Twitter to get a behind-the-scenes looks at how much fun they’re all having or search the hashtags #insidezappos and #zapponians to see what kind of content employees share on a daily basis.

Reebok

Reebok does a great job in encouraging employees to:

  • Create and their own social media content and
  • Share company’s content on social media

Moreover, when hiring people for certain positions, Reebok also makes sure that their people are passionate about sports and are passionate social media users. Such strategy empowers them to easily build a pool of potential brand advocates and create very efficient employee advocacy programs

As the image below shows, their employees create and distribute their own content on social media while wearing Reebok’s apparel.  

employee-advocacy-example-reebok

Why do we love this employee advocacy example?

It is obvious that Reebok does a great job informing and training its employees about how to be advocates. Not only that their posts include unique, recognizable, and fun hashtag #fitasscompany, but they also use keywords relevant to the organization such as running, cycling, bodybuilding, and similar. 

Getting Started with Employee Advocacy

Building, implementing, and managing successful employee advocacy programs is not an easy job. However, when done right, the results are incredible

Organizations across the world are witnessing the power of employee advocacy more than ever before. With the emergence of the current pandemic, people spend more time on social media. As a consequence, social media marketing, social selling, and social recruiting have become must-have strategies. 

One of the most important prerequisites of every successful program is the implementation of adequate employee advocacy software. Without the right technology, employee advocacy becomes a mission impossible!

Best employee advocacy platforms make employee advocacy more streamlined, and they make it very easy for employees to share content on various social media channels in a matter of seconds. Furthermore, gamification features make ambassadorship fun, engaging, and rewarding for employees.

If you are considering implementing an employee advocacy program in your organization, schedule a 15-minute intro call with our team to discuss your business goals, technology requirements and Smarp pricing for your unique case!

smarp book a demo employee advocacy

Written by

Kristina Martic

Kristina Martic

Digital Marketing and Employer Branding

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