What’s ahead in 2018?
How will you continue to build your career through social media in the coming year? As a corporate professional, how can you best tell your story through social media – and promote your employer’s brand and your colleagues at the same time?
Employees can share official news and information about the company and its brand through personal social media channels.
Some research I did this week got me thinking about this topic (opinions expressed in this blog are my own).
I reviewed recent literature and studies to identify the trends and challenges in marketing, branding and public relations for the coming year.
6 PR trends to check out in 2018 pointed to the expansion of personal branding and thought leadership beyond a company’s leaders.
“The more people on your team who are building their brands and, by extension, your company’s brand,” says the article’s author John Hall, “the more opportunities you have to distribute content and connect with your audience.”
It also aligns with the “media fragmentation and loss of trust” that Robert Wynne covers in The biggest and most important media and PR trends for 2018.
In it, Bob Gold also speaks to the burgeoning challenge of getting noticed in growing media among the “ever-expanding communications channels.”
- Employee advocacy adoption grew by more than 25% over the last year.
- In 2018, the top goal is to increase the number of employees participating as advocates.
- Growth occurred for use of Facebook, Instagram and YouTube. Surprisingly, LinkedIn declined after being the top channel last year.
- The most popular channels are Facebook (76% of respondents’ employees use it for advocacy), Instagram (62%) and Twitter (56%).
- Twitter’s popularity went down 29% over the last year.
- YouTube grew dramatically (35%) in its use year over year – to 43% in 2017, up from 8% in 2016.
“We attribute this shift to the increased variety of industries and type of organizations adopting employee advocacy, as well as the expansion of business objectives for these programs,” says Jen McClure, CEO of JEM Consulting.
“We’re seeing that all types of organizations are using visual media effectively,” McClure also says, “especially online video, which was one of our key recommendations from last year’s study.”
This is good insight for companies and individuals alike in planning for the coming year.
Personally, I’m looking at shifting my employee advocacy more toward Instagram and Facebook. This will be an interesting evolution, since I currently use those channels to connect with my personal networks (although the proportion of professional contacts is growing on those platforms).
And while advocacy seems to be declining in LinkedIn and Twitter, I’ll still focus on LinkedIn. The 500 million people on LinkedIn make it an ideal place to connect with other professionals. And the recent addition of video capability will be fun to explore.
With these data points, how will you create your social media strategy for 2018? What will you you continue? What will you change?