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3 Undeniable Reasons Recession-Proof Businesses Utilize Brand Advocacy

With the increasing risk of global recessions, it’s a good idea to prepare yourself with strong financial planning, especially if you’re a small business owner.

Here are some of the different ways to help make your business recession-proof:

  • Hire skilled employees
  • Beat the competition
  • Have an emergency fund
  • Reduce cash flow

But did you know one of the least talked about ways to make your business recession-proof is to utilize employee advocacy?

What is Employee Advocacy?

Employee advocacy is the art of promoting your business through word-of-mouth advertising. It’s so effective that many popular recession-proof businesses use it, including:

  • Dell Computers
  • Starbucks
  • Electronic Arts
  • Reebok

However, you can’t just tell your employees to engage in word-of-mouth advertising and expect results. To truly see results, you need to have a decent employee advocacy platform.

One such tool that allows you to have an employee advocacy program is GaggleAMP.

  • Allows for over 50 different activities to be completed on your favorite social media platforms
  • Allows for one-click sharing and integration with platforms like Slack and Microsoft Teams
  • Offers analytics to measure the success of your campaigns
  • Engages employees with fun gamification features

“GaggleAMP is a win-win! It's a marketer's dream to be able to curate and craft strategic messages and leverage a large group of employees to amplify the message.“ — Ryan B, Mid-Market.

Today, we’re going to look at some of the reasons why recession-proof businesses use employee advocacy. You’ll also learn more about what it is and why you should consider it an option for your business.

1. Brand Advocacy Reduces Advertising Costs

The best business idea is to save money. Here’s how

The first (and possibly the most important) reason recession-proof businesses use brand advocacy is it reduces advertising costs.

How?

Firstly, you’re not paying as much to launch advertising campaigns.

According to Wordstream, “the average small business using Google advertising spends between $9,000 and $10,000 per month on their online advertising campaigns.”

However, you can implement an employee advocacy program using a tool like GaggleAMP for as little as $300 per month—and you don’t have to pay per engagement like when you run a typical advertising campaign.

According to the same source, “the average cost per click of an online Facebook ad is $1.72. The average cost per action on Facebook ads is $18.68.”

Once you have brand ambassadors on your team marketing directly to their social circles, which are often made up of peers with similar interests, you can essentially avoid these costs altogether.

Bonus Tip: Brand Advocacy Also Increases Conversions

As you’re marketing to people who know your brand ambassadors personally, they’ll have increased trust for your content.

According to SalesForce Search, “over 90% of companies report that they will only buy from companies that they trust.“

Now, while this stat refers to B2B, the same applies to any type of customer.

This means that while reducing your costs, you’ll also have better lead generation and conversions through brand advocacy—which is imperative for creating a recession-proof business.

2. Brand Advocacy Allows for Account-Based Marketing (ABM)

recession proof industries use ABM

The second reason recession-proof businesses utilize brand advocacy is that it gives them more freedom in their marketing choices. In other words, it allows for account-based marketing (ABM).

ABM is simply the art of tailoring your advertisements to a specific target audience. According to Forrester, “62% of marketers measured a positive impact since adopting ABM.”

With a tool like GaggleAMP, your brand ambassadors can pick and choose the advertisements they think their social circle is more likely to engage with.

For example, if your brand ambassadors are sharing content on Linkedin, they might choose to share content that focuses on your company's successes or inspires others to apply for a job within your industry. Whereas, if your ambassadors share content on Facebook, they might choose to be more sales-oriented to target the everyday consumers on their friend list.

Similarly, your brand ambassadors can curate content to target different areas of the sales funnel. For example, they could initially tailor their content to the awareness stage of the funnel and after a series of engagements, start tailoring that content to the discovery or evaluation phase.

  • The Awareness stage means consumers know your business exists.
  • Discovery and evaluation mean your consumers are looking into your content and learning more about who you are.

Overall, ABM simply offers more freedom for your marketers. With the ability to tailor their ads to specific target audiences, your brand ambassadors can easily increase your lead generation—even during an economic downturn.

3. Brand Advocacy Increases Brand Awareness

amid the global financial meltdown, small businesses need brand awareness

This is one of the critical reasons recession-proof businesses utilize brand advocacy: it increases brand awareness.

In fact, according to Business2Community, “brand messages are re-shared 24 times more frequently when distributed by employees through employee advocacy vs the brand.”

In other words, with employee advocacy, your content won’t just reach your brand ambassadors' social circle but also the social circles of your brand ambassador’s peers and beyond.

Related: How an Employee Advocacy Platform Will Increase Brand Awareness

What are the benefits of increasing brand awareness? You’ll not only expand your business’s horizons and create new opportunities for it, but you’ll also save money and:

  • Enjoy increased sales
  • Have better customer loyalty
  • Become a leader in your industry

Despite how effective employee advocacy is, there are also several other ways you can increase brand awareness:

  • Host an online blog to draw in more traffic
  • Send out a regular newsletter keeping customers aware and updated about your business
  • Partner with other brands
  • Host sales events or promotions

Using a tool like GaggleAMP, you can pair these methods with your employee advocacy program for better results.

For example, if you’re hosting a sales event, you can tailor your social media posts to promote that event. Your employees can then share those posts across their social media channels without hindering their workflow.

“GaggleAMP streamlines social sharing for our employees. Our employees have one central place to find any type of content they'd like to share on their social channels, all with proper corporate messaging and on-brand images.” Jamie G, Social Media Strategist.

Start Making Your Business Recession Proof Today

These three recession-proof business ideas prove how recession-proof businesses utilize brand advocacy.

Before we show the best tools to do this, let’s take a brief look at what makes a recession-proof business.

What’s a Recession Proof Business?

When you hear the term “recession-proof business,” it’s easy to think it’s just the name for a business that can survive a recession, but it’s not. That’s a recession-resistant business.

A recession-proof business doesn’t just survive the economic downturn; it thrives in it.

For example, during the 2008 recession, the Dow Jones Industrial Stock Market dropped 34%.

However, Dollar Tree saw a
60.8% stock increase and Vertex Pharmaceuticals Inc saw a 30.8% increase.

So, what do these two successful businesses have in common?

They both provide essential services.

So a recession-proof business is a business that thrives during a recession and, in most cases, offers customers essential services.

This means if you’re a business owner looking for recession-proof business ideas, you must also consider providing your target market with similar essential services. For those in B2B, it may look like

  • A CRM solution to track your leads
  • A marketing automation suite to automate
  • An internal communications platform to communicate with employees and customers
  • A customer support platform to support current customers
  • A bookkeeping or payment platform to track expenditures and make payments

However, if your business doesn’t fall into these categories—it doesn’t mean it can’t be recession-proof. But it does mean it’s all the more important to kick off an employee advocacy campaign correctly and that starts with a decent employee advocacy platform.

What to Look For in an Employee Advocacy Platform

What to look for in an employee advocacy platform

A good employee advocacy platform includes various features to help launch and maintain your advertising campaign. Look for a platform that:

  • Includes gamification features like leaderboards to engage and motivate your employees
  • Allows for easy sharing to not interrupt your brand ambassadors' daily workflow
  • Has advanced analytics to help you quickly measure performance and ROI
  • Allows seamless communication, so your marketing goals and brand ambassador's vision easily align

GaggleAMP is one such example of an employee advocacy platform that provides all of these features.

“We chose GaggleAMP as our advocacy tool for several reasons but one of the main reasons is the number of different activities that can be performed by users. It gives us a ton of options for creating engagement across our social platforms.” — Administrator in Facilities Services.

Get in touch today and try 14-days for free and your business will be on its way to utilizing brand advocacy just like other recession-proof businesses in your industry.

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Michelle Brammer

Michelle Brammer

Michelle Brammer is the Director of Marketing at GaggleAMP. Her background includes over 17 years of brand marketing, strategy, analytics, operations, and multi-channel experience, and she’s firmly rooted in client success and engagement. She is passionate about teaching youth about the digital advertising space and perfecting inbound marketing and social media efforts. Michelle’s thoughts on marketing, advertising, and social media have been published on Forbes, Convince & Convert, iMedia Connection, Bulldog Reporter, MediaPost, PRNewswire, and more.

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