2017 has already provided pop culture with a variety of new vocabulary words. One of the most talked about is “Fake News.” Today, anyone can jump online and within minutes create a new online journal titled, “The Best (and Worst) Places to Work in the West.” In an instant, opinion is being marketed as fact. How valid of a publication is it? Does the author have an agenda? Will this new online publication hurt your business? Who knows?
So how can an employer protect itself in a world where the line between real and fake information gets greyer every day? What’s an organization’s best defense? According to research by Weber Shandwick, it’s not a “what,” but rather a “who”–your employees! According to their 2015 publication, Employees Rising, more than 33 percent of your employees are already talking about you on social media. Weber Shandwick advises that since this communication is already happening, encourage it! Give them information, stories, and messages that are safe to share as they try to up their own followers and likes. According to the research, the benefits are myriad. Customers don’t love a brand until they can see that its employees love it first. People are more likely to listen to corporate messages delivered by people in their own social networks than to random advertisements. These are referred to as Employee Advocacy Programs and allow every employee to be a brand spokesperson–humanizing your organization and what you have to offer.