Every other Thursday, at 2 pm ET, @InsideZappos, a Twitter handle manned by employees of Zappos, facilitates the #insideZappos twitter chat for a half hour. Employees from across the company share real life answers about working at Zappos. It’s a great example of using social media to showcase your employees as advocates of your brand and to build trust and positive reputation. Check out some of the questions from the last couple of chats, and my tips below about how to make this successful for your organization.
Zappos asks people about their career path within Zappos, sharing with prospective candidates the opportunities to advance and grow within the organization.
They highlight the environment, including the kinds of artifacts people have at their desks.
And they put a spotlight on some of the great opportunities to get involved with the community while working at Zappos…
Q5: What has been your favorite Karma Adventure or charity event? #insidezappos
— Inside Zappos (@InsideZappos) August 14, 2014
— Rockne Henriques (@Rockne808) August 14, 2014
Pretty cool, getting an inside look at the company that is often looked to as the leader in company culture. So what should you think about before you do this yourself…? Here are some tips.
- Know your real Employer Brand. Not just what you want it to be but what it really is – how do your employees really feel about working there? What is the culture? Your culture is your brand – your employees are the ones who live it and will share it, so make sure you’re prepared. The last thing you want to have happen is what happened to JP Morgan Chase back in November when they attempted to host a Twitter chat, and had to cancel when inundated with negative tweets.
- Encourage twitter-savvy employees to take part. Engage your employees who are already on twitter to help you plan the chat and to take part in it. Twitter chats move fast, so you’ll want some experienced tweeters there to assist.
- Be consistent. Chances are, at first, your twitter chat will be quiet. Once word builds that you’re empowering your employees to share online, it will build – but again, be aware of #1… you want them to have positive things to share!
- Be human. Even though Zappos tweets from a shared twitter account, you always know who is moderating, and they use real language and not corporate lingo. People like to hear from real people, not logos, so prepare to tweet like a person.
- Build culture. I know – I already mentioned this but it’s worth stressing again. TRUST is core to great culture – and is essential if you’re going to embark on something like an open Twitter chat to build your employer brand perception.
Check out the Blueprint for Workplace Reinvention for examples and tips on building Trust and Agility in your organization.