How to Encourage Employees to Get Active on LinkedIn
With more than 722 million users worldwide, according to Statista, LinkedIn is more than just a place to upload your resume and apply for jobs. The social media network has become another platform for sharing content and connecting with people.
According to LinkedIn research, company employees have a combined network that's at least 10 times larger than the company's own follower base. Yet, only 13% of employees are actively engaging on LinkedIn. This is a lost opportunity. LinkedIn can be a powerful tool for companies to build lasting relationships with customers, generate business leads and find and engage in-demand talent.
The challenge is encouraging those employees who don't post to share their company experiences on LinkedIn. To find better ways of activating LinkedIn participation, we asked executives their strategies to boost involvement.
Why Employees Need to Be on LinkedIn
Posting on LinkedIn has the benefit of increasing company standing in the eyes of both employees and consumers. And it comes with little or no marketing cost, said Chris Muktar, founder at WikiJob, a London, UK-based jobs and careers site.
"With your employees posting on LinkedIn stating that they are working for you, companies can already have a free advertisement of their business indirectly," he said.
Similarly, LinkedIn can be a great source of information for employees to get relevant information about their industry. LinkedIn has become more than a social network for job seekers; it has turned into a place where thought leaders discuss trends and where workers can learn from one another.
For employees, LinkedIn has the potential to become an effective channel for self-improvement, development and socialization. For companies, it represents a place where workers can indirectly talk about their jobs and encourage others to see what you're up to.
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Encourage LinkedIn Activity in the Workplace
Employees are powerful forces for building brand trust and credibility. For instance, an employee post about how friendly the company culture is will be much more credible than a company picture with an inspirational caption saying the same. In fact, employee brand advocacy has become an essential part of the digital workplace ecosystem.
With the increase of remote work, encouraging employees to become active on social media on behalf of their companies has become another growth strategy companies have at their disposal, especially because whatever employees share reaches much more people than the average company post.
Sometimes, employees simply don't feel like sharing or think that what they have to share might not really carry weight. Thus, encouraging them to do so becomes a must if companies want to reap the benefits of an engaged workforce.
Here are three ways to encourage employee activity:
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1. Become More Engaged On LinkedIn Yourself
"If you are already engaged, it's easier to encourage others to do so," said Joe Teo, CEO at St. John, Canada-based HeyOrca, a social media scheduling tool. Therefore, before asking others to join, start by joining yourself and becoming active to teach others and advocate for implementation.
2. Match Employee Goals With Company Goals
Not every worker will be an advocate for a company's goals, but hiring people whose personal goals match organizational goals will build brand advocacy. "Employees who engage on Linkedin expand not only their network but also your company's," Teo said, "boosting your company profile and placing your company name at the front of other people's faces."
3. Offer Bonuses to Social Employees
While this might sound like bribing to some people, the truth is that sometimes people need an incentive for action. One example is to hold a competition and offer gift cards or other incentives to employees for engagement. This strategy has the added benefit of helping uncover the company's natural influencers and give them more tools to boost the company's reach.
Related Article: Improving Employee Engagement in the Enterprise
Give Employees Feedback and Recognition
In an increasingly remote business ecosystem, maintaining and broadcasting company culture has become more important than ever. Public posts that recognize employee contributions helps to build and maintain personal connections, said Yusuf Raza, co-founder at Singapore-based Panalyt, an internal people analytics platform.
"Everyone loves being recognized and I'd say people also feel valued when asked to give feedback," he said. "Leveraging LinkedIn as a channel for public recognitions can be a great way to not only help employees feel valued and connected with the company and their peers."
In the end, the success of an initiative to get employees on board with LinkedIn depends on how much the individual employee perceives their presence on the social network benefits them personally. However, that doesn't mean that you can't build an environment where getting active on LinkedIn is a task rather than an enjoyable activity.
Focus on creating a work environment where employees are encouraged to talk about what they're doing and what's happening in their work lives. Once that's done, the rest should come easy.