It’s incredibly important for companies to have an online presence, even if it sounds like stating the obvious in 2016.
When most people first began making use of the internet, it was primarily a research tool and a means of data collection and analysis.
Now the use of social media is universal, with most of us having accounts on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram or LinkedIn, perhaps all five and more.
No matter what an individual’s employment status is, you can be sure that somehow or other, he or she is making use of the internet to communicate, to inform or to be educated.
Has it occurred to you that you have a large army of employees, partners, suppliers, sellers, media and stakeholders all ready and available to be brand ambassadors for your enterprise?
How about empowering them so that they can give you vastly more online exposure and credibility?
By giving them the appropriate tools, they can promote the company and exponentially increase awareness of your brand.
Make it fun by organising competitions and polls, giving incentives and opportunities to your employees and clients.
Your feedback will soon let you know if you have got it right, and if not, it’s easy enough to alter direction a little until you are getting the response you want.
However, your company must create social media protocols for employees to follow.
As representatives of the company, employees must positively espouse the company’s values and follow the do’s and don’ts established for online posting.
Large companies should also adopt a crisis communication plan (if already not in place) so that senior executives’ online reputation can be professionally managed.
At the very least, decide which employees can post and what and where they can post.
They must understand and follow set protocols for handling negative feedback, and learn to avoid potential landmines.
Depending on your product or service, develop strategies that will enable them to search out target markets and monitor competitors.
Research the appropriate industry standards to ensure that you have guidelines for online advice-giving.
There are many compelling reasons as to why companies should develop their online brand marketing.
Without doubt, your employees are already online, which makes online brand awareness a remarkably inexpensive option to pursue.
Hopefully, your increased orders may require additional customer service staff – a small price to pay for the increased exposure and interest!
Additionally, being online in all aspects of your customer service delivery gives your employees and company a global reach formerly unheard of.. and this is great news for all especially smaller-medium size firms.
This kind of marketing works perfectly alongside traditional marketing by increasing customer-client engagement and building awareness of just what your company can do.
Encourage and empower your employees to become your brand ambassadors.
By using the correct platform strategy there are huge benefits to be had, and it won’t be long before your brand will become even more relevant and desirable.
Is your business using brand ambassadors? How?
Jon Michail is Group CEO of Image Group International, an award winning author and recognised Australasia’s No 1 image coach. Image Group International supports executives, entrepreneurs and their organisations to become iconic and monetised leadership brands.
He has been a regular commentator in international media including ABC, CNN, NBC, Harvard Business Review, Entrepreneur, Success, The Financial Review and Vogue.