I recently read a good post on ‘Dispelling Four Top Corporate Myths About Social Media’ by B.L. Ochman and I was wondering why the fear of social media exists in the first place.
The main reason is because of the fear that the employees might do something …
I believe this fear for social media is a result of a much bigger issue, being the lack of a strong, omni-present ‘company soul’, that is actively supported. When employees become soulmates (like at Starbucks’ or Apple or Virgin, or Google, well you know…), they will never harm the brand.
They will support and defend it at any price.
WHY? Well it’ like family or better friends. There’s this invisible bond, it becomes part of who they are. They identify with the brand. It is the result of good Employer Branding or better yet Employer Bonding.
With the unstoppable rise of social media, Employer Bonding is opening up a new stage of possibilities, but it also radically changes the way ‘companies’ think. They have to start seeing and treating employees as soulmates. Only then social media opens a huge potential of creativity, beyond imagination.
I read an interesting facebook post on this:
I do not tell my friends about you because I like brand, but because I like my friends….
Think about that.
The thing is, no matter what product or service you produce, there’s always someone that can make it better faster or cheaper. The only lasting distinction is made by the group of people who form the organization. They are your brand soul.
The impact of this phenomenon will increase more over time when skills such as ‘service’, ‘creativity’, ‘innovation’ and ‘leadership’ determine the differentiation and the success in the market (and that is besides the fact that talent is getting scarcer!). It’s the human talent and the impact it has on the ‘companysphere’, that makes the difference. Companies become communities, with shared values and believes and a common goal!
Employer bonding is all about involving and inspiring the existing group of workers and attracting new people to realize the promises made to the market. A great example is the Belgian Facebook group of Audi Brussels A1 factory. This is a facebook group of employees. It started spontaneously, without interference from management, because of one reason: They love the company they work for. They are the company they work for.
A goldmine of getting people involved and talking passionate about your brand or company, is the wonderful company stories. The challenge is surfacing the many fun/interesting/fascinating/… stories that already exist and use it for corporate communications, employer branding, “personal branding” and “social branding”.
It is the rise of the in-company-brand-journalist who finds the stories, organizes them into relevance’s, serving the specific audiences and objectives and makes them better (better written, better imaging (photographs, film, etc.). Companies need to makes them accessible for the soulmates. No secrets. Every company or brand can fake a good first impression, but will they get away a second time?
Times are changing: There’s only a second chance to make a first impression
The first chance is easy to fake…
So, what is your story?