man jumping in the dark sunsetFinancial marketers typically consider social media an important tactic in their overall marketing strategy to attract customers. Yet they sometimes overlook the value of social media to attract and retain top talent.

Here are three reasons to create social media content for your vital internal employee and potential employee audiences, and how to do it effectively.

Millennials and Gen Z are watching

Millennials and Gen Z now make up 46 percent of the US workforce. And they have even greater expectations of employers than previous generations. In addition to work/life balance (or even personal life-first philosophies), their top reasons for choosing an employer include:

  • ethical leadership
  • mentally healthy places to work
  • diverse and inclusive workplaces
  • purposeful work and social responsibility

Social media is a great way to demonstrate how your financial brand lives out these and other attributes they look for in an employer.

Adopt a new social media mindset

  • Think expansively about content—not just product-forward, but people-forward.
  • Think bigger and more broadly about target audiences for engagement and sharing.
  • Reinforce peoples’ positive feelings about working there.
  • Give prospective employees a glimpse inside and help them envision themselves on your team.

3 approaches to social media content that engages and inspires

1) Better employee shout-outs

This item doesn’t require explanation. Employees who are singled out and genuinely praised for their contributions feel a sense of being valued by their employer.

the workaversary: not just the milestones like 5, 10 and 20. Celebrate each year. If you have an especially large workforce, create a collage with photos. Or do a continuous series. Always tag them and thank them.Employee workaversaries celebrated at Chickasaw Community BankEmployee workaversaries celebrated at Chickasaw Community Bank shared on LinkedIn.

significant contributions: internal innovation competitions, cost-saving initiatives, the traditional “suggestion box” ideas that are put into practice and customer testimonials are all strong content topics for recognizing employees on social media all year long—not just at the annual meeting. If you don’t have these, establish some.

employee volunteerism, passions and hobbies: showing employees in their activities—whether during or outside of work—offers the chance to create visually exciting content and demonstrate that you recognize and value the whole person. It also offers the chance for much higher shares and comments in the broader community.

2) Reach and engage families and significant others

My friend Joe recently shared that his specialty manufacturing company was in competition for a statewide award: the “Coolest Thing Made in Kansas.” Throughout the selection process, his company created numerous social media posts demonstrating how the product was made, the employees crafting it and the value the product brings to the marketplace. A surprise to Joe was how many employee family members told him and his team that they finally understood what their spouse/parent is helping make—and how very cool they think it is. Employees basked in the glow.

show what you make: Unlike Joe, financial organizations don’t make things, but they do certainly bring prosperity and promise to the marketplace. Create regular posts about the value you bring, the lives that are changed or the businesses that thrive because of your people, products and services. Talk about big dreams and outcomes. That kind of content can bring life to posts. They become shareable and make hearts swell. 

take our kids to work day: Parents love the chance to show their kids their workplace, and show off their children to colleagues. These annual events give the kids a glimpse of their parent’s typical day—and create a sense of awe about it. Social media posts about these days are win-win-win. Bonus points for those who have a Bring Our Pets To Work Day. Also highly engaging and shareable.

3) Reinforce your purpose and values

When they’re really good, your mission, vision, values and “why we’re here” should be regularly highlighted on your social media. Unfortunately, there are so many lookalike/soundalike purpose statements that they don’t differentiate one financial brand from the next. So if yours are really good and unique (and I hope they are) then social media channels are powerful ways to share what you believe and how you live it.

wear your heart on your sleeve: Create a branded heart or purpose icon to incorporate on all posts that showcase your social consciousness and beliefs. Over time, that graphic treatment will help set your brand apart in the long social media feeds people are scrolling.Country Bank Highlights Community SupportCountry Bank highlights its community support and uses a heart icon supporting its brand.

show your people in action: Don’t just say you volunteered at French Middle School on Finance Day—show your team meeting with students. If you have interns, a mentoring program or other activities that support your purpose, post them regularly. Don’t just take photos of people sitting around a table or a laptop. Look for action shots and create short video snippets to generate more emotion and excitement.

A new social media mindset is vital

Many financial brands will say their best asset is their employees. And that may be true. But without consistently, creatively and strategically demonstrating this fact, the statement is meaningless.

Social media can be a powerful ally in this fierce battle for top talent. There’s no time to lose.

Want more on employer branding? Watch our 8-minute video—Employer branding: 3 vital elements that elevate financial institutions.

For help from a financial branding agency to help build the employer brand for your financial institution, call Martha Bartlett Piland at 785.969.6203 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Photo credit: Jon Tyson on Unsplash.