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Employee advocacy without LinkedIn Elevate: how to make it work

Updated: Aug 6, 2020

LinkedIn's employer advocacy platform Elevate will be shutting down by the end of 2020. The good news is, some of its content distribution features will be integrated within the LinkedIn Pages functionality for free.

Free things always sound great, but the news may not be as great as one would think. Even though LinkedIn has not revealed how exactly LinkedIn will integrate Elevate’s features into pages, it's likely, many of their features will never see the light of day again.

If you are a communications professional or lead an employee advocacy platform, you are probably scratching your head thinking what exactly this will mean to you and how to proceed next. Here are some key topics that explain what this transition might mean for you.

1. Content segmentation: keeping content relevant to all employees

Naturally, not all content is useful for everybody. Overloading employees with all sorts of content is ineffective and harmful to your employee advocacy program.

One of the biggest reasons to use a platform like Elevate is to target your content within your own company. They offer various segmentation features so that different departments receive specific content tailored to what they’re interested in.

This aspect will probably not make it to the LinkedIn Pages functionality making content segmentation harder.

What can you do about this?

  • Think carefully: how can you create employee subgroups? Perhaps, you will need to use other platforms within the company to share content.

  • Find a way to track results through the pages and built-in advocacy features.

2. Employee engagement: how to keep the program going

Engagement is not a one-way street. In an ideal world, everyone in the company should have an opportunity to contribute to content creation and have an option to upload their content on the platform as well. Co-creation is powerful as it builds a sense of community, giving people a voice and a platform to interact and share valuable experiences.

One of the coolest functionalities of an employee advocacy platform is that it allows employees to upload content, too. But, again, these features will probably not make it to LinkedIn Pages, also.

What can you do about this?

  • Find another way to stay up to date, engage your colleagues, and submit content.

  • Involve and coach employees who aren’t used to posting or engaging on LinkedIn. Have an open and respectful discussion on their content and how they could improve. Done well, it can help people understand that their contribution matters and help them learn and grow.

  • Track individual content and progress of all employees. We have built an Employee Advocacy measurement tool that can help you track what exactly each employee is posting and how well their posts are performing.

3. Keeping it real: measuring the impact and ROI of your employee advocacy program

One of the biggest challenges for communication professionals is measuring the impact and ROI of the employee advocacy program. A lot of the employee advocacy platforms have built-in features for this. They track not only engagement and views, but also click-through rates earned media value, showing how much organic views were generated instead of advertising.

It is most likely that LinkedIn Pages will provide an aggregate number of engagement or interactions that you've achieved through your employees. Still, it’s unlikely you will have the more advanced aspects. Losing these functionalities will make it a bit harder to build a business case for your employee advocacy program and measure your financial return.

What can you do about this?

  • You will most likely need to think about different calculations or platforms that can help you track individual profiles and their reach.

4. Keeping it fresh: creating content beyond your company

In 2021, it will be easier than ever to notify and distribute corporate content to employees. LinkedIn Pages may have a special section with corporate content easily accessed by the company’s employees.

However, you need to remember that employees are people, and they are more complex than the companies we work in. They want to have real conversations and talk about topics beyond their company.

What can you do about this?

  • Think bigger. If you want to drive a successful, sustainable advocacy platform, you should be thinking about relevant industry content outside your company. It could be industry news, events, the latest research, or innovation. All of this should be monitored and distributed, together with your corporate content.

  • Coach your employees on how to create great content that serves both them and the company. We have trained people in many multinational companies, like TUI or Smurfit Kappa, and experienced firsthand how powerful training can boost the effectiveness of an employee advocacy program. Learn more about our employee advocacy training program.

5. Where to next: how to track the untrackable

At Connected Circles, we help brands to supercharge their employee advocacy programs in mostly two ways:

  • Tracking and providing custom-made analytics for personal profiles, giving managers a clear overview of what people are posting and how effective they are.

  • Train and offer ongoing personal coaching to teams, ensuring that the best advocates get the most out of what they're doing on LinkedIn.

We approach analytics with interactivity in mind. We don’t believe in looking at LinkedIn analytics in isolation; this is why we designed Connected Circles Engage App with the idea to bring you back to LinkedIn.

Conversations always happen in context, so a high-performing post can be a way to engage with like-minded people, invite them to separate conversations, or build new networks altogether.

Employee Advocacy is a topic close to our hearts and minds. If you’d like to talk about it more, we are always open. Let us know!

If you want to see more what you can do with personalized LinkedIn analytics on Engage App, look at our video below.


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