Share this. Post that. Tweet this. Pin that. Social media is everywhere and just about everyone interacts on it in some form. Many businesses have been diligent about scrubbing through their prospective hires and employees’ personal profiles to monitor their activity. Most have policies in place to limit engagement because they are afraid of how their employees might represent them or misuse social media. However these businesses are making a huge social media mistake: not using their base to increase social media engagement. 

Companies have an incredible resource at their fingertips, but fail to capitalize on it and correctly leverage it. Instead, they shy away from letting their employee base use social media. Somehow, they don’t realize that every employee has the potential to be a brand ambassador and that each one has an extended, untapped network.

What’s even worse is the fact that many brands drop serious money on social media advertising to fuel their success, yet they don’t capitalize on the employees who are easily within their reach. In the future, smart brands will implement social media sharing strategies into their training and culture. I recently had a conversation with someone who said they refused to share business items on their social media channels because that was personal and they didn’t feel it necessary. While I understand this reluctance to become your employer’s biggest cheerleader on Facebook, this creates a huge opportunity for both the company and the employee. The company gets more visibility while the employee can attach himself to their projects and career successes to leverage social media for future promotions or job opportunities at other companies. Being so insular on social media inhibits growth for both parties involved. 

Some of the inhibition can be stemmed when you educate your employees and partners across departments. It’s not a natural inclination for someone in the IT department to share that you’ve won a huge client over. But communicating within the company and making everyone a part of the success increases the changes that employees will feel proud enough to share what’s going on. Education and communication is key. 

What are some ways your business has implemented a social media culture?  Are you missing opportunities to spread your message to a larger audience by failing to leverage your stakeholders and employees?