The Foundations of Advocacy

The Rules of Digital Marketing Have Changed

As you know, social media has changed how companies market, advertise, and communicate. Instead of relying solely on traditional campaigns, they’re creating empowered advocates composed of employees, influencers, and customers.

Advocates don’t merely “like” a specific brand – they’re passionate about the value of its offerings and genuinely want others to get in on the action.

Best of all, as advocates help to increase reach and engagement, they drive leads and revenue. While you’re probably aware of the benefits of advocacy, you might still be wondering which type of advocacy program makes the most sense for your organization, and how to best execute it. That’s why we created The Foundations of Advocacy – containing the key metrics that are shaping digital marketing advocacy, this report is designed to help leaders make informed decisions. The Foundations of Advocacy is based on aggregated data from Dynamic Signal customers, the largest and most robust customer database in the advocacy category.

Download this free report today then give us a shout and share your thoughts about advocacy programs.

Employees and other advocates

An advocate is someone who publicly supports a company, cause or policy. They could overtly make a recommendation (“Buy this product”) or do so implicitly by virtue of a social media post about a product. Whatever the case, the recommendation can come from these different groups:

Employee Advocacy

Many employees want to share company news and happenings with their social networks, but they aren’t sure how they can do so. “Who am I allowed to share it with? Could I get in trouble?” Luckily, Employee Advocacy programs provide company-approved content, giving employees a safe way to share content.

Influencer Advocacy

Influencers can be anyone with serious name recognition like a celebrity, industry leader or author. Because of their large followings, your content and messages get wide exposure.

Customer Advocacy

Satisfied customers aren’t always enough for continual company growth. When properly motivated, this group essentially becomes a collection of brand advocates, helping to increase sales without spending more on digital advertising. In some cases you could even reduce those costs.


Your best advocates are right in the office

Influencers can provide a certain advantage. So can customers. But nothing beats employee advocates for long term results. They’re more eager to discuss the company, they join the program faster, and share much more often.

Employees want to share company content

Based on our research:

  • Employee Advocacy content is shared 3x more than Customer Advocacy content
  • Employee Advocacy content is shared 4.5x more than Influencer Advocacy content
  • Employee Advocacy programs have 6x more engagement than Influencer Advocacy programs
  • Employee Advocacy programs perform better for two reasons:
    1. Employees have the content conveniently sent to them in an easily sharable format via email or text, to laptop, mobile, desktop or tablet
    2. Because the content is company-approved, they share it more often because they know it’s safe

Employees join advocacy programs more than anyone

Employees join advocacy programs more than Influencers and Customers. That’s because they naturally have more affinity to the company, so they’ll tend to quickly sign-up. Plus, they may be exposed to the program through multiple channels including email, text and intranet. It’s easy for them to sign-up by clicking a link in an email.

Sign Up Rate 4.93% 49.3% 30.25


How to create content that makes people want to share

Think of why you would share content:

  • Make the content relevant to your company and industry
  • Personalize it to the employee’s job function, interests and online activity
  • Deliver fresh content on a consistent basis
  • Make the content available on the any device: mobile, laptop, tablet and desktop

Employees are long-term advocates

Once employees become advocates, the data shows they’ll stick with it. Based on our research, after 90 days, 3 out of 4 employees continue to engage with their program. Compared to influencers and customers, employees are most active over a 12-month period, with their advocacy generating awareness, leads and revenue.

Our research also shows that more than half of employees already think they are advocates, but they believe they either don’t receive the right content or they’re afraid to share it.

Still Using After 3 Months 22% 85.4% 53.3%
Average Months Active Per Year 2.63 9.3 6.39


How to inspire employees to join the program

First identify those who are already active on social media. Since they’re comfortable with the concept, it’ll be automatic for them to be early adopters. And when social media newcomers see how advocacy easily fits into the daily workflow, they’ll be sure to join the program as well.

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