One of the most challenging aspects of public relations work is accepting – and even embracing – the loss of control that is inherent in what we do. From opening the morning paper to read the article that results from a media pitch, to watching a room fill up at a planned event, to launching a Facebook promotion and monitoring to see how many fans engage, the one thing we all learn early in this career is that there are no guarantees.
But that’s also what makes PR exhilarating and rewarding: that trust in the fact that more times than not, the benefits of allowing others to speak on behalf of our clients (if we’ve done our jobs well) far outweigh the risks involved. Nowhere is that more true now than in social media. As PR practitioners, we’re well versed in helping our clients understand that a loss of control over messaging and reaction to that messaging can be a positive thing for them and their brands. On the social Web, the value of authenticity is high, content is king (or queen), and the voices of real people engender a more favorable response than canned corporate-speak.
Yet, many companies and organizations are ignoring one of the most obvious resources they have in creating an engaging, authentic social media presence: their employees. Every day, front-line employees are interacting with customers. Often, they are the first – and hopefully not last – interaction that people will have with a brand. In our latest white paper, “Striking Gold: Build Your Brand by Mining Employee Stories,” we explore this potential goldmine. Take a look. Maybe it will inspire you to risk a little loss of control in exchange for storytelling that builds your brand.
Image Credit: Martin Deutsch