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Employees as Advocates and Influencers: 5 Challenges and How to Overcome Them

Like many internal and external communications efforts, reaching out to employees to become company influencers has potential barriers to success.

Here are a few typical challenges to a values-based, employee influencer communications program and how to work around them for maximum impact.

  1. Challenge: Authenticity

  • Communicating the company’s culture in a calculated way can look forced, especially if the interview process seems too guided.

  • Solution: One way to work through this is to make these types of employee advocate interviews a regular occurrence, perhaps monthly or quarterly, bringing in different employees each time to offer their own perspectives on company values.

  1. Challenge: Introversion

  • It is important to consider employees’ feelings prior to the creation of any content. Many people aren’t comfortable being in the spotlight or being interviewed on camera. Some prefer not to be photographed either.

  • Solution: Open communication, including expectations, can help to alleviate any hesitancy or shyness when it comes to being interviewed.

  1. Challenge: Geography

  • Organizations with more than one location can present their own set of challenges.

  • Solution: Employees from all locations should be included to ensure no one feels left out or that their location doesn’t matter to the overall company mission.

  1. Challenge: Production

  • Video equipment, cameras and other resources are an important part of the content creation process.

  • Solution: Many organizations are well equipped to handle this kind of production in-house, while others may need to outsource or hire teams to produce image and video content.

  1. Challenge: Time

  • For any organization, it is difficult to find the time to market yourself when other work – client work or work that actually makes you money – often takes priority. It's the classic "cobbler's children have no shoes" scenario.

  • Solution: A certain amount of lead time must be given to circumvent any prior work or tasks that are going to be taking place at the same time. It’s normal for an initiative this size to take weeks, or even months, to get off the ground due to busy schedules.

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