How employee advocacy tripled Vizient’s social media engagements
Vizient is the largest healthcare performance improvement organization in the US. They use social media to help them achieve their mission: connecting healthcare professionals with knowledge, solutions and expertise that accelerate performance.
“The content we produce has tangible impacts on the healthcare industry. We provide educational resources to healthcare professionals that help them stay informed,” says Elida Solis, Social Media Director at Vizient.
When the COVID pandemic began, Elida and her team jumped into action. They refocused their content on the emerging needs of the healthcare community. To amplify their message, they tapped into the power of employee advocacy and tripled their impressions in the first six months.
Their strategy proved so effective they were awarded “Best Use of LinkedIn” by PR News.
In two years, Vizient turned their employees into brand advocates, gained thousands of new followers and increased their awareness and engagement with the help of Employee Advocacy by Sprout Social.
Tapping employee networks to make thought leadership accessible
Before the pandemic started, Vizient was in the early stages of developing their employee advocacy program. After lockdown measures were put in place and their work went virtual, they accelerated their advocacy project plans and launched with a small pilot group.
Employee advocacy is a new initiative for us. During the pandemic, our Member Performance team—like everyone else in the country—couldn’t travel to meet their clients. It was a critical time. They had our COVID resources, but they struggled with how to share them. They didn’t know what to say or how to share the messages broadly.
Social Media Director, Vizient
Sprout’s Employee Advocacy solution provided Vizient team members with streamlined access to company content and pre-approved social messaging, which made them feel more confident sharing posts with their network.
By posting prepackaged content on LinkedIn, I have been able to reconnect with former colleagues, expand my network and engage in interesting conversations with my community. If you’re looking for an easy way to help your team stay current on relevant information and expand your brand’s influence in the market today, I would recommend Employee Advocacy by Sprout Social.
Assistant Vice President Pharmacy & Care Delivery Product Strategy, Vizient
Soon, the initial results were in and the pilot far exceeded Elida’s expectations. Within three months, Vizient saw double the engagement compared to their traditional organic social channels and gained thousands of new followers.
Vizient leadership decided it was essential to expand the program to other teams. One-by-one other departments were onboarded, and Vizient continued to see record-setting impressions.
Elida and her team were determined to make Employee Advocacy implementation as user-friendly as possible.
She says, “It was a commitment to our employees. We are giving them a tool that’s easy to use. It’s a straightforward, time-efficient way to reach their networks.”
Elida and her team provided support, including an internal advocacy resource hub that houses a product demo, instructional guides and on-demand webinars. The resources equip Vizient employees with personal branding tips to elevate their social presence and maximize the advocacy program.
Providing value to customers and team members alike
Vizient’s employee advocacy success is rooted in their commitment to providing value to their audience and team members.
For example, at the onset of the pandemic, Vizient immediately halted all ongoing content development efforts to refocus their entire strategy on COVID-related educational resources.
As Elida says, “We, as a company, made the decision to make a lot of our content available to healthcare professionals outside of our membership program. We knew it was a critical time to share timely updates in an efficient, accessible way. Social media played a key role in helping us do that.”
Vizient experts and members comprise the Vizient Disaster Response Team who have been collaborating with #healthcare providers nationwide to identify issues they are facing during the #coronavirus outbreak & emerging best practices for #COVID19 patients https://t.co/K6LgqvB3lr pic.twitter.com/3LEAKb27te
— Vizient, Inc. (@VizientInc) March 18, 2020
By putting the needs of their audience at the forefront of their strategy, Vizient saw significant performance improvement—from their engagement rate to follower count.
To maximize the effectiveness of employee advocacy, Elida knows their content must resonate with Vizient team members as well. She makes it a top priority to provide them with 10 to 15 insightful content stories they actually want to share.
She advises team members to, “Share what’s most relevant. Don’t think of it as ‘promoting content.’ Consider what your network wants to learn more about. When you share a post, customize the copy to infuse your experience and make it relevant for your audience.”
Above all, Elida and her team want the content to make a positive impact on healthcare and the lives of professionals in Vizient’s community and beyond.
Elevating the value of social and advocacy
When Vizient first started using Sprout’s platform of social management tools, they made it clear they needed to communicate social performance results with executives and other departments on a regular basis. Their most important key performance indicator (KPI) was engagement.
Using customized versions of Sprout’s performance reports, Elida and her team create monthly and quarterly reports that elevate the value of social across their company.
At Vizient, we’re really fortunate because our senior leaders get it. They really understand the importance of social. They see the results in our performance reports and they’re actively engaged and participating in our social initiatives.
Social Media Director, Vizient
As Elida says, “We’re able to view the metrics and the results from the number of active employees—the amount of shares, the resulting impressions and engagements. About 85% of our employees in the system are active, and that’s a big win for us.”
But equally important is their employee satisfaction, which is the ultimate value of the program. In every internal survey they’ve conducted, their Employee Advocacy satisfaction score was 98% or above. On average, 67% of employees reported receiving greater network engagement because of the program.
Since we started using Sprout’s Employee Advocacy solution, my network has become more engaged. I get asked about my company more than ever and people comment on how active I am on LinkedIn. It makes it easier for me to interact with my connections on social. I would highly recommend Employee Advocacy by Sprout Social to other companies considering it.
Vice President, Zone Leader NE & SE US—Spend Management Services and Delivery, Vizient
Elida points out that although employee advocacy is voluntary, the Vizient team shares posts because they find it beneficial and enjoy celebrating company culture.
Sprout Social helps Vizient extend brand awareness
For Elida and her team, employee advocacy has increased brand awareness, supported recruitment and generated lead opportunities. It’s also giving Vizient employees the ability to amplify content through their own voice and perspective.
Learn how Employee Advocacy by Sprout Social can help extend your social reach. Request your free demo today.Download PDF