Are Your Employees’ Personal Brand Helping or Hurting Your Company Brand?

Brad Shepard Enterprise

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Marketers are becoming increasingly aware of the power of employee personal branding, yet most have no idea how their employees are representing themselves and their company brand online.

For example, our research shows that:

81% of people have looked up an individual online before a meeting, after a conference, or during a presentation. Considering most of your potential clients will research your employees specifically, the personal brands of your team members are a crucial component of an effective company brand.

53% of decision makers have eliminated someone from consideration based on information they did or did not find about them online. In other words, all the resources that you invest in your company brand can be in vain if prospects are ultimately turned off by your employees’ personal brands.

Some of the key elements of your employees’ personal brands include:

  • Search Presence: What kinds of results surface in the first page of search results for your employees’ names, or combinations of their name, location, company, and professional specialization?
  • Social Media Profiles: Do your employees’ online profiles effectively describe their professional background, establish their association with your company, and communicate how they can help potential clients?
  • Social Media Posts: Are your employees in the habit of sharing content that reinforces their thought leadership and establishes trust with prospects?

In the interest of getting their team to better represent their brand online, many companies try to jump straight into an employee advocacy program.

They try to get employees to share company content, without first communicating what’s in it for employees from a personal brand building standpoint.

By foregoing this important first step, these companies fail to get buy-in from employees, resulting in programs that show low participation rates and negative returns on investment.

The best way to get your team on board with personal branding is to get them to understand how it can benefit their own professional career, in addition to helping them bring in new and recurring business for your company.

How to Get Started with Employee Personal Branding

Convinced about the power of employee personal branding, you might hire an individual to teach your team how to share content on social media or hold a workshop about optimizing their Google search results.

The problem with this approach is that it overlooks the crucial preliminary step of assessing your employees’ online presence as it currently stands.

By failing to quantify how effectively your employees are branding themselves online before starting the program, you can’t measure improvement or how this improvement has helped to build the company brand, generate new leads, or close new sales.

Know Where Your Employees Stand Before Building Their Personal Brands

Before your company embarks on a personal brand management program, we recommendauditing your team’s online presence as it currently stands.

In particular, you want to make sure that your employees are:

  • Discoverable: Easy to find in relevant search results
  • Credible: Showcasing their skills and experience
  • Supportive: Building their personal brand while helping build your company brand

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You can check for these elements at the individual level by searching for an employee, seeing how many results are about them, and clicking through to each relevant website to assess how well they are presenting themselves and the company brand.

The challenge comes with trying to measure personal brand effectiveness at the company level. Taking the steps above for every single employee would be a cumbersome process, especially if your company has hundreds or thousands of employees.

How to Efficiently Measure Your Whole Team’s Personal Brand Effectiveness

Kredible has developed a new product that allows you to automatically audit the online presence of your entire workforce.

Before helping clients build their employees’ personal brands, we provide them with a detailed report on their team’s search and social media presence.

Kdna Lets You Quantify the Quality of Your Employees’ Online Presence

To build our Kdna™ reports, we assess your employees’ online presence in the three areas that matter most to decision makers, according to our research on B2B buyers’ digital consideration path™.

Kdna™ Reports Analyze the Following Aspects of Your Employees’ Online Presence

1. Search Results: quantity and quality of links about your employees in the first page of search results for their name and location.

2. LinkedIn Profile: number of connections and presence of key information about your employees’ current and prior professional experience.

3. Twitter Profile: number of followers, quantity, and relevance of their tweets.

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Kdna™ reports provide you with an executive summary and detailed findings about your team’s online presence in these critical areas, even if you have thousands of employees.

How Do Other Companies Stack Up from an Employee Personal Branding Standpoint?

Based on our Kdna™ reports for multiple organizations, we’ve seen that most company’semployees are falling short across all priority personal brand touchpoints.

1. Search Results

  • 50-60% of employees have 3 or fewer links about them on the first page of search results. Our research shows decision makers expect to see at least 4 results about your employee in searches for their name and location.
  • Only 10-30% of links that surface about employees reinforce their professional credibility or relate to their company’s services.

2. LinkedIn Profile

  • 30 – 50% of employees don’t have a visible profile picture, a crucial element to making a connection with your prospects.
  • 50-70% of employees don’t include a professional summary, even though this is one of the sections that matter most to decision makers.

3. Twitter Profile

  • 5-30% of employees have Twitter accounts.
  • Over 50% of active employees have over 100 followers, but only 0-10% of their tweets mention or relate to their company.

Turning Data into Results: What Do I Do With Information About My Employees’ Personal Brands?

Design the ideal employee personal branding strategy by marrying the information from your Kdna™ report with Kredible’s industry-specific research about which factors matter most to your buyers.

  • Kdna™: Your report will provide a temperature check on how your workforce is currently branding themselves online, revealing the areas of opportunity where your employees could stand to improve.
  • Kredible Research: Prioritize these factors based on how much they matter to buyers in your specific industry to craft an employee personal branding game plan that empowers your team and builds your brand.

Contact us to set up a quick discovery call and generate your company’s Kdna™ report!