Instagram is a great channel to use to provide candidates with an inside look into your organization and motivate them to join your team.
One of the most effective types of content that my team at WeddingWire leverages on Instagram is employee generated content.
What is employee generated content, you might be wondering?
Employee generated content, also called EGC, refers to social media content that is created and shared by employees. Examples here could include photos from an employee’s first day at work or from an office holiday party.
When employees create and share EGC, they are blasting out messages about what it’s like to work at their organization to everyone in their social networks.
You can also re-share these pieces of content from your corporate or careers social accounts to make sure they are widely seen by everyone following your accounts (and to attract new followers).
According to our observations, these types of people stories and content perform the strongest out of anything we share!
The tricky thing with EGC though is that everything resides in the hands of your peers at your organization. They need to feel suitably motivated and knowledgeable enough to want to share pictures from their work lives.
So how do you encourage employees to share and create employee generated content?
At WeddingWire, we take a two-pronged approach:
First, during onboarding we make sure to include strategic messaging about social participation. This way employees know that we want them to share their experiences on social and have information on how to do so.
We share info about which hashtags to use (#lifeatweddingwire) and encourage employees to follow us so we can follow them back. We also share examples of the type of content people have created and shared in the past to inspire them and provide an idea of what they might like to capture.
Our second approach as a talent brand team is to focus on the employee experience. We spend a lot of time thinking about how we can create “surprise and delight” moments that will provide a lot of motivation for employees to share their employee experience on social. We find this creates the most authentic look into Life at WeddingWire.
Here are some top employee experience initiatives we’ve used in the past that have resulted in strong employee generated content:
1. Great Place to Work awards celebrations
Consider how you might celebrate as a team when you win employer or best place to work awards. When WeddingWire was named a Great Places to Work by Washingtonian Magazine in 2017 we arranged a 360° photo booth so people could take videos and share them on social.
2. Work anniversaries
We make work anniversaries special and social media worthy by decorating employees’ desks with a silver balloon indicating the number of years they’ve been working with us. Employees also receive a special (and coveted) WeddingWire hoodie on their one-year anniversary that tends to find its way into a lot of social media snaps.
3. Themed treat days
We bring in special treats on a regular basis to show our employees we care. One day we set up an ice cream sundae bar to show appreciation and at the same time we asked our team for feedback on the employee experience at WeddingWire.
4. Take your kids to work day
Take your kids to work day is a great occasion to showcase your culture. Pick a fun theme and make the day really special for parents and kids. Your employees will appreciate all the TLC you put into making the day a great experience for their kids. We had a “Take Flight” theme for this year’s celebration.
5. Unique holiday celebrations
We celebrate holidays by coming up with fun activities that bring the company together to try something new. For Halloween, we organize costume and pumpkin decorating competitions that always go over well.
6. Volunteer initiatives
Philanthropy is one of the cornerstones of our culture at WeddingWire. Our employees participate in a variety of volunteer and charity initiatives throughout the year in our different offices. We encourage our employees to share snaps from their experiences. We also try to help plan some unique and fun ways to give back throughout the year too, that stand out from other corporate giving initiatives.
One of our tentpole events is Global Donate, our annual day of service, where we pause business operations to give back to our communities. Additionally, this year we hosted the “Brews From Someone New” cart weekly where we donate employee-raised funds to local charities of the employee’s choice; participated in a meal packing event where we packed meals for nearly 40,000 individuals; and hosted a team building event where we constructed an 18 hole mini golf course out of boxed and canned goods that were later donated to MANNA, a local food bank.
7. Employee appreciation day
Employee appreciation day is a great chance to create an Instagram-worthy event or activity. This year we had a waffle breakfast with gold letter balloons and all the waffle toppings you could dream of. Last year, we hosted a build-your-own omelette breakfast bar.
8. Earth Day
We always aim to celebrate Earth Day with some fun activities. This also spotlights to our followers that we’re a company that cares about the planet. This year we hosted a Plant Nite party where employees could build their own trendy terrariums to take home or display on their desks.
9. Health & wellness activities
WeddingWire employees like to be active and healthy – particularly when it’s for a good cause. We hold an annual health and wellness fair to give employees ideas for how to incorporate these initiatives into their work lives. Other recent health and wellness events that made their way on to Instagram? Our employees participated in a mindfulness triathlon for charity and we organized a hydration challenge to raise money for Charity Water.
10. Campaigns to spotlight everyday things employees appreciate
Creating moments employees will want to share on social media doesn’t need to be completely event oriented. You can also start campaigns or encourage employees to share photos of what they love about the ordinary, everyday moments in their work lives.
Last February, we put together a campaign called “Love Where You Work”. We interviewed employees to find out what they would spotlight as the best things about working at WeddingWire so our followers could find out more about the company beyond the great events we put on. Top things our employees brought up? Our work-life balance and getting to work with creative and ambitious colleagues. (Pro Tip – Like hearing what your employees love about working at your company? Encourage them to share their sentiments on review sites like Glassdoor.)
What kind of results have we seen from this?
Anecdotally, we’re hearing more and more that the reason people decide to apply to WeddingWire is because they’ve seen our social media posts, are attracted to our culture and think it looks like a great place to work.
We’re starting to track this a bit more precisely as well, with a trackable link to our careers site from our Instagram bio. This shows us how many people are going straight from Instagram to our careers site, and what they’re doing when they’re there.
At the time of writing this, we only had the link in place for two weeks, but already garnered two applicants just from Instagram alone!
About the WeddingWire Talent Brand team:
All of this work is really a partnership between myself and my colleague Kate! Here’s more about each of our backgrounds.
Kate Slavit is our brilliant Director of Communications & Talent Brand for WeddingWire. Kate has worked for WeddingWire since 2010 in a variety of event marketing and communications roles before transitioning over to her current role, which covers Recruitment Marketing and candidate attraction efforts.
Allyson Clark (me!) – I work as our Manager of Culture and Experience at WeddingWire. I focus on creating great events and experiences to help maintain our positive, inclusive culture throughout the entirety of the employee lifecycle. I started on the sales team at WeddingWire in LA in 2014, before relocating to our Washington office and taking up this role in 2016.
Feel free to connect with Kate or myself on LinkedIn, and don’t forget to follow the WeddingWire Careers Instagram @lifeatweddingwire for more ideas of Instagram-worthy moments you might want to create at your own organization!