This post is a compliment to my article Finding a Soul In Brands which explored the true meaning of “Social Media”. The article focused on the concept of Social Media and addressed some of the misconceptions in the business community. This post is aimed specifically at highlighting some of the advantages in using social networks and various social tools to build community within your organization for increased engagement – the employee focus.

The core of your business: Your Employees

People often spend so much time trying to figure out how to reach their customers, grow sales and use social media for these purposes that they are at risk of forgetting the key members of their community: their employees.

Video is a powerful tool for employee engagement. People often think “video” then limit their thinking on what they can do with it. Companies should not limit themselves to focus on product or service offerings when they have a whole cast of stars within their team.

Here are 5 Ways to use video to spotlight your employees

…and in the process increase their engagement and create an opportunity for your community to also get to know your business better.

1. Put photos to video and create memories of company events featuring your employees as the stars.

2. Use your videos in your recruitment efforts

It’s very difficult to get a feel for a company during the interview process. In order to build an amazing team, you want to attract candidates that share the same culture. Sharing these kinds of videos, or even creating videos asking people to share what they think it’s like working at the company is a great start. Keep it genuine, the right people will be able to connect with what you are sharing.

3. Ask employees to participate in videos sharing their thoughts in general,

 or ask them about their challenges or accomplishments.

In this video, “Steve” addresses the challenge insurance people face from the general consumer who doesn’t know them or trust them.  

4. Next time you have a contest, involve your employees too.

Get your employees to participate – a great opportunity to show off your stars and get community involved. In the video below we we partnered with a local coffee shop, and went on site to do the draw. In other videos, we did the draw in the office. It was a lot of fun!

It’s also a great way to get them into the community and spotlight other local businesses.

5. Share these videos with your customers, over your internal employee networks and in the community.

Help people connect , learn about each other, and learn more about who is “behind the scenes” at your company.

Feature your employees in less traditional ways.

Employee of the Month

Wouldn’t you rather watch a video to hear what this guy has to say? (Employee of the Month = Photo credit: RoninKengo)

It’s great to be the employee of the month with a picture on the wall, but really – what does that really do towards getting to know people, or truly sharing who that person is? How about a video next time, asking the employee how they accomplish what they do so well?

It’s time to start thinking out of the box and getting your employees involved and motivated!

Not only will employees have fun and appreciate being involved in being a part of the company image and brand building, but they will also be invested in the messages they are sharing and will be able to join your company in the quest to provide a truly outstanding customer experience in real life and through social media activity.

Your first community is your internal one, if you build your fans there first it will contribute to both your online and offline success.

These are the things that help build engagement and create companies with soul.

I have been working on these kinds of projects for several years now, there is nothing more rewarding than seeing the employees delight when they realize that what they contributed to was important. If you need help figuring out what might work in your workplace, share your concerns in the comments, or send me a message, I’d be happy to see what we can do to engage your employees.

Remember every business is different, but what I hope you will see here is that you can do some pretty amazing things just by opening your mind and making everyone count – before you focus on your customers, focus on your employees – then they will take care of the customers for you!

Still Not for you? Keep an open mind.

ToonSwag by The Animated Woman @Littleanimation drawn during my panel discussion at #140Conf Montreal (#140MTL)

ToonSwag by The Animated Woman @Littleanimation drawn during my panel discussion at #140Conf Montreal (#140MTL)

Final Notes:

  • Just because you make a video, doesn’t mean you have to share it. Test different things out. Get your employee feedback first, see what you produce and take it from there. There is no harm in trying! Working together is a great team building opportunity. Remember this is about engagement! Not sure you know how to make a video, ask your employees to make some for you. Encourage their creativity.
  • Not everyone is comfortable with the idea of being in a video. It will take time to bring all employees on board, or make them comfortable with appearing in video, however if you explain the reasons behind why you are asking them to share their thoughts, even the shyest of employees will get on board.
  • All your videos do not have to be blockbusters, or go viral. They are simply touches that you offer for people to get to know you. The more you practice and make open sharing part of your culture, the more people will get involved.

Give people a chance and you may be surprised at the support and appreciation you will receive for making everyone a part of the social team.

Video provides an opportunity to create lasting moments and a feeling of collaboration that is exciting and new. Every workplace should find opportunities to share like that.

What do you think?

Is this a strategy that would work in your workplace or with your clients? 

Employees are the real stars of the business – doesn’t it make sense to feature them?

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