The average user in the U. S. checks Facebook, Twitter and other social media accounts at least 17 times a day, and that includes your employees. Nearly every business uses social media, and it’s more critical than ever to make sure company employees are helping rather than destroying the brand.

Social media is an essential marketing tool for positioning a business in a positive light. It can also ruin a reputation in a heartbeat. How does an organization ensure its staff has the skills and intuition to handle themselves online without putting the company at risk?

Anyone can post a photo or a comment. It takes training and practice to understand how to gain user engagement and create brand awareness. Whether working for a large corporation, small business or nonprofit, employees must use social media responsibly for three reasons:

1: Brand protection

brand protection
In a matter of seconds, a bad social media post can tarnish a good reputation that took years to build. Setting expectations about what is appropriate to post, communicating those guidelines and helping your staff understand the company’s goals will protect the brand.

2: Brand engagement

brand engagement, tin can phone

Encourage employees to promote the company’s brand in their social networks. The staff is likely already using social media to stay on top of industry trends and connect with co-workers, clients or prospects. More likes, comments and shares will generate more views and greater engagement on official posts.

3: Brand ambassadors

brand ambassadors, crowd at concert

Buy-in from employees can help drive brand loyalty; the most credible source of advertising is word-of-mouth. Eighty-three percent of consumers believe brand recommendations from family and friends, according to a Nielsen survey. Training an employee to positively promote products, services or community actions can be one of the best ways to generate brand awareness and possible business leads.

So, how do you go about social media training?

Sometimes all it takes is a one-hour workshop to bring your employees up to speed on your marketing plans; however, a brand brief, style guide and social media policy book are helpful resources to create. Candor has extensive experience hosting interactive workshops with business leaders and employees to teach social media best practices.

Call or email Candor to help your company find its digital voice.