A couple of weeks ago, we ran a blog outlining how internal communicators could transform email into a powerful social channel within their organization.
We received a few questions asking how internal communicators could encourage more employees to share their thoughts and ideas through comments.
Whether you’re launching or refreshing your channel, the tips below could help boost the number of comments you receive. It’s worth noting they’re just as applicable to other social channels, such as your intranet.
Create a network of Communication Champions and get them involved
Do you already use an official group of Communication Champions? Or are there a number of employees you regularly contact as part of your role? If so, explain what you’re trying to achieve and ask them to start regularly posting comments in your publications. With a few colleagues breaking the ice this way, other employees will feel more confident sharing their own thoughts and ideas.
Work with Content Owners
Many of the stories we communicate come from stakeholders across the business keen to promote a particular project, event or function that they’re involved with. Consider asking these content owners to pre-script a comment that they or their team can add to the publication once it lands in their inbox. This could be an anecdote related to the story, or even part of the story that is deliberately left out of the original communication and can be shared as an additional thought.
Encourage your CEO to comment
Try asking your CEO and other senior managers to respond to articles or to other employee’s comments once a week. You could send them a selection of comments that have already been received, or encourage them to post a well done beneath an appropriate story. Encouraging senior management to lead by example will send positive messages to the rest of your organization.
Consider removing comment moderation
Moderating comments not only takes up resource; it’s likely your employees will also notice that their responses are not being posted immediately. While the urge to ensure that no one posts anything offensive is understandable, try turning off comment moderation and instead highlighting your social media guidelines.
Keep the conversation moving
Employees will quickly start to use the commenting section if they see it’s a good way to receive answers to their questions. Make sure you respond to comments as quickly as possible to ensure you keep the conversation moving.
Within Newsweaver, you and your team receive notifications whenever comments are added, allowing you to respond or seek a response quickly. Employees will also be notified when someone responds to their own comments.
Ask colleagues to get involved
Include clear calls to action at the bottom of your articles asking employees to share their thoughts. Specifically encouraging employees to get involved and share their thoughts demonstrates that you want to hear from them.