While most social business efforts generally focus from the outset on gaining adoption — the initial strategies for which are now increasingly well-understood — many organizations greatly under-leverage one of the very best and most accessible resources for achieving high levels of traction in their efforts. Although it’s now largely appreciated that community managers form the operational and strategic backbone of social media-powered business environments and processes, they are just one set of a company’s stakeholders which must be well-connected in an integral fashion in the social business.
The benefits of employee advocacy cannot be underestimated: Ramping community management up to the levels required to effectively engage millions of customers who are trying to interact with a company socially just can’t work. Using automated engagement tools instead actually kills the point (and much of the benefit) of being socially connected with the marketplace. And, as invaluable as community managers are, they have their own point of view that can’t possibly represent the entirety of the company. No, to accomplish this, employees themselves must be externally engaged in a proactive and strategic manner that maximizes the benefits of becoming a social business. Employees know the company the best, they have vested interest in good outcomes for the organization, and they’re the most scalable resource the company has directly in hand.
Also, check out Mashable’s Infographic on how to train employees to participate in your small businesses social media efforts.