This is just one of many staggering social media statistics, illustrating its power and strength. Social media is the fastest growing communications tool and love it or loathe it, it’s one of the most effective ways to reach a huge number of people in next to no time.
Increasingly, companies are discovering the benefits of using social media. According to a recent study, 66% of marketers plan to increase their expenditure on social media over the next year (http://socialmediatoday.com/tompick/176932/best-social-media-stats-and-market-research-2010-so-far) and by 2014, it is estimated that social media will replace email as the main form of communication in up to 20% of businesses (http://www.power2motivate.com/blog/bid/46831/Boost-employee-recognition-with-the-digital-water-cooler-of-social-media). When companies use social media well, it can be an excellent promotional marketing tool. Blog posts, photos and profiles can be accessed by millions, instantly and for free. Still not sold? Take a look at some of the supporting figures:
• Social media budgets are expected to grow by 34% each year for the next 5 years.
• Two thirds of the world’s 100 largest companies use Twitter, 54% have Facebook pages, 50% manage at least one corporate YouTube channel and 33% have created blogs.
• Over 40% of survey respondents reported that they had gained at least one new customer from Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook or their company blog.
• Blogging increases Twitter reach by 113% for B2B companies.
• 51% of Twitter users follow brands or products, rather than just personal contacts.
Social media could be adopted by your organisation in so many ways, from promoting new products and receiving feedback, to online recruitment, brand positioning and customer service strategies. One excellent, but often ignored, method of incorporating social media is through an employee recognition scheme. You can use social media to let millions know about your employee’s (and company’s) great performance – resulting in a happy and recognised workforce alongside positive PR for you; a win-win. Ever thought of incorporating any of the following:
• Online photos of employee of month.
• Posting stories of employee successes on your Facebook page.
• Posting online videos of employee reward and recognition presentations.
• Setting up RSS feeds giving followers access to real time employee nominations.
• Tweeting praise about your employees.
• Showcasing client appreciation and thank you letters, allowing users to comment.
• Developing a recognition scheme blog to gain valuable feedback on the effectiveness of the programme through two-way communication with your audience.
By utilising a familiar medium such as Facebook or Twitter, you are instantly making your scheme highly accessible to your employees. It will enhance and compliment your recognition programme by increasing engagement and interaction levels – all at a minimal cost to you. So what are you waiting for?