Whether you know it or not, you can engage your employees to become your marketers.
Business owners these days are wearing many hats. Too many, in fact. They often feel like everything involved in running their company falls upon them. That's why so few market their businesses the way they should. You always hear excuses like: "I just don't have enough time to run an email program," or "I am too busy running my business to write a blog post."
Well, like most things in business, you don't have to do it alone. Whether you know it or not, you can engage your employees to become your marketers. All it takes is a little incentive. Here are four ways to reward your employees for engaging in marketing.
- Offer Incentive Programs. You probably know about a traditional incentive program in a business. Businesses regularly reward tenure, high sales, or high job performance. But when it comes to marketing, an incentive program can be a bit more difficult.
I truly believe that everyone is a marketer, particularly in small businesses. If your employees engage with your customers in any way, they're marketing. That means they're more than capable of executing other marketing tactics such as blog posts and social media posts.
Give your employees the option to write blog posts. Incentivize them with gifts or freebies for the time spent. Assure them that blog posts are easier to write than they think, and even give them some suggested topics. The blog posts will come rolling in.
You can even incentivize them for blog post performance. If a post performed particularly well in drawing in new customers, maybe another reward is necessary.
- Intra-office recognition. This seems simple, but it always works. As your company grows, especially, your employees will always be motivated by recognition from their peers. That's why the "Employee of the Month" plaque is still so common in businesses nationwide.
Maybe it is time for a silly award recognizing marketing. If there was a rotating trophy or trinket for "Blog Post Champion," employees will be more likely to fight for it. Most importantly, if the award is silly enough, customers may even ask about it, driving them to your website or blog. It's a win-win.
- Make It Fun. This kind of goes hand-in-hand with the point above, but if you can successfully make marketing a game among your employees, it will be hard for them to stop. If your employees are competing for social shares, for instance, they will take the time to make the post shareable, and even more time distributing the post to earn shares.
- Make It Part of Your Culture. All the incentives in the world, however, can't overcome this final point. If marketing is part of your organization's culture and your employees enjoy working for your company, that is all the incentive they should need. Simply set up a system for having all of your employees engage in your marketing regularly, and support them with a great internal business culture that rewards creativity and supports personality.
This article was originally published on Inc.