Why employee stories should be part of your employer branding strategy plus real company examples for sharing them with maximum impact.
What was your company’s latest social media post? Was it about your product? Or was it about your people?
How often do you feature employee stories on your social media? (If you do it at all.)
As any marketer knows, social media is one of the most important tools in their kit, providing instant reach to an audience in real time. And yet, while millions of businesses have social media accounts (as of 2018, 97% of all Fortune 500 companies use at least one platform), two critical factors are too often overlooked:
- Social media is social, meaning it’s meant to be a two-way conversation, not a broadcast
- Marketing your people and values is just as important as marketing your goods and services
Why you should feature employee stories on social media
Sharing employee stories on social media shows potential job candidates what they can expect from your company culture. It’s also cost-effective and possible with a dispersed team.
More consumers want their dollars going to companies they feel align with their values. In fact, a 2020 study by PR firm 5W found that:
- 71% of consumers prefer buying from brands with aligned values
- That number jumps to 83% among millennials
That alignment also applies to employees, who are increasingly seeking out workplaces that fit their values.
Our own Great Place To Work® research found that there are 3 keys to employee retention including company reputation and a sense of purpose. And Gen Z employees cite a warm welcome and mentally healthy workplace among its top factors when applying for jobs.
Which is why featuring employee stories on your social media is so important. Sharing employee stories on social media is a way to showcase your company culture and values and attract customers and potential hires alike.
But how do you share employee stories in a way that’s authentic and engaging and while your team is dispersed?
Here are five ways to feature employee stories on social media that will work for remote and in-person workplaces, starring examples from Certified™ great workplaces around the globe.
How to share employee stories on social media
1. Employee social media take-overs
Hand your account(s) over to your employees and let them speak for themselves. That could be something like a “day in the life” on TikTok, an interactive Twitter chat, or an Instagram ‘Ask Me Anything.’
Of course, blindly giving the reins of your brand accounts may not fly with your PR and communications team. But if the employee and the marketing team collaborate on the message, you can come up with some creative and authentic employee stories.
Employees may want to cross-share their story on their own personal social media accounts, like an employee from TC Acoustic did after the company became Great Place To Work-Certified.
His Instagram carousel tells the story of how his career with them grew from a part-time university student to opening their Hong Kong operations as a new grad.
2. Participate in theme days for maximum reach
Global theme days (or even themed weeks or months) are a social media gold mine. Not only do they supply you with a focused content topic, but they enable you to take part in a worldwide conversation and reach more people.
Days like Employee Appreciation Day, Certification Nation Day or World Mental Health Day are perfect times to show off how your workplace is making the world better – especially when you can connect those themes directly to your employees’ stories.
3. Think beyond the workplace
Great workplaces recognize that their employees have lives beyond the office. While it’s great (and encouraged!) to praise employees for their hard work, why not extend that and shout out some of the amazing things they’re doing outside of work?
Maybe you have an employee who volunteers with a charity, or who has a fascinating hobby, or a talent beyond their 9-to-5. Show off the personality of your people and in doing so, you’ll convey how your business puts its people first.
Logical Media Group hosts a monthly employee spotlight on their Instagram account. Rather than focusing solely on what the employee does at work, they share personal details, such as how one employee performs improv and stand-up comedy during his off-hours.
4. Share your stats for transparency
If done right, numbers can be very eye-catching on social media. If done wrong, they’re just another boring statistic.
When it comes to social media, think visual: graphs or infographics that are easy to read at a quick glance. And be selective with which numbers you want to present.
Tap into the stats that truly set your company apart, whether that’s:
- how many women you have in leadership positions
- how your salaries compare to the competition
- how your employees answered your latest pulse survey.
By clearly showing the percentage difference between employees who rank GitLab a great place to work, compared to the national workplace average, they convey a lot of information that’s easy to absorb.
And a cheeky “PS – we’re hiring” with a link to your jobs page, just like GitLab did, doesn’t hurt.
5. Make your own filters for playful posts
Filters aren’t just for making your sunset photos pop. If you spend any time on Instagram Stories or TikTok, you’ve likely seen filter games where a card appears on a person’s forehead, flipping through answers to questions ranging from what celebrity they look like to where they’re going to travel this year.
The filter spins through the different types of employee you may be: an ideator, an achiever, a leader, or more. A fun way to encourage employees to share their workplace pride.
Amplify your employee stories and make your company culture go viral
At Great Place To Work, we have our own theme day that is the perfect time for featuring your employee stories on social media, whether your team is in the office or remote. Certification Nation Day is happening online on May 17, 2022. We’re inviting companies to get Certified, so they can celebrate their people-first cultures alongside the world’s best workplaces on the day.
Get Certified in time for Certification Nation Day 2022 and make your employee stories go viral.
Hero image: Employees at Canopy Children's Solutions.