Authority Brands has been named a 2023 Franchise Innovation Award winner for our “Life at” social media engagement and recruitment program. The goal of the Franchise Innovation Awards is to identify and recognize the franchisors creating and implementing the most original and successful innovative strategies and tactics to build their brand. A jury of judges evaluated the innovation, objectives, and results of each entry. The “Life at” social media channels are national social media pages on Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, and Twitter that highlight company culture through employee generated content from franchisees. Five of our brands have “Life at” programs up and running, and more are on the way. “Life at” is all about showing off company culture through the perspectives people trust the most—their peers!
What are your employees saying about your business when they’re not at work? That is your employer brand.
Employer branding is nothing new. However, implementing it into the franchise industry is very new, and Authority Brands is leading the way. What started as uncharted territory has become the new road map for recruitment marketing and retention efforts. The “Life at” programs tell job seekers a WHY they should choose a career within our brands. These programs proactively create and maintain employer reputations. They’re a channel for authentic storytelling, bringing workplace culture to life, and a platform for employees to gain national recognition.
By engaging current employees on social media, companies tap into those employees’ own networks to attract new employees by providing a snapshot of what it is like working for the brand, and highlighting workplace culture to generate recruitment leads organically through social media. “Life at” channel content consists of award recognition and employee achievements, great customer reviews, workplace culture, celebrations such as holiday parties, birthdays, graduations, and “day in the life” content from the perspective of a franchise owner’s current employees.
Navigating Today’s Competitive Hiring Landscape
“Life at” took off as a solution to the recruitment and retention challenges that franchise owners across the country are trying to manage. The idea began with Leanne Stapf, Chief Operating Officer of The Cleaning Authority, who sought to leverage social media as a recruiting tool to generate more brand awareness. Enter Gabby Loielo, the Social Media Recruitment Marketing Strategist who built out and maintains the "Life at" programs. It was important to create a scalable model for the other companies under the Authority Brands umbrella to follow, given the current difficulties with employee recruitment and retainment.
For this program to be a success and to attract the brands’ target audiences, Gabby knew it was critical for franchise owners to contribute to content creation and encourage their employees to engage as well. Franchise owners are typically more knowledgeable about their local markets and customer demographics than the corporate office. By involving franchisees in the messaging for the pages, Authority Brands was able to ensure that the content would resonate with the desired target audience. All involved teams sought out to showcase positive company culture and real staff experiences through social media while also weaving in key brand messaging to attract prospective employee interest to the individual franchisees as employers. More than anything, it was important for the content to be genuine.
The Cleaning Authority’s pioneering “Life at” program was extremely well-received, with owners expressing an uptick in employee communication while also noting how the initiative helped attract new hires. Employees also shared positive feedback with gratitude that their hard work and dedication to the brand was getting national recognition. The program also helps bridge the employee-employer relationship gap and create a more uplifting and inspiring work experience. The brand and each franchise owner helps employees prosper and grow, which encourages future employees to join the brand. It has also allowed the brand to tout its standing as a franchise employer of choice, elevating its reputation among the industry. This success was a sign we had to launch similar programs for more brands.
The Results Are In…
Franchise owners who participate have achieved a significant improvement in employee engagement and retention through their “Life at” employee advocacy. It has enabled a more positive and supportive work environment that encourages employees to share their experiences on social media, resulting in a rise in engagement across various platforms. Impressions and engagement rates are high, and employees are continuously posting photos and videos of their work activities and tagging the “Life at” accounts for the chance to be featured.
With this newly heightened national visibility, many applicants from across the country have reached out to the brands via the “Life at” accounts, inquiring about potential employment opportunities with the brands’ local franchises. This has translated into tangible recruitment results, with over 1,800 career page and recruitment leads generating from local recruitment posts across these social pages. It has also contributed significantly to franchise owners’ employee retention efforts, creating a culture that focuses on employee well-being and work satisfaction. The program has encouraged employees to become more invested in their work, motivating them to continue to grow alongside their respective brands.