For maximum impact, create share plan communications that meet employees at the stage of life they’re at.
There are so many things that motivate employees to join a company share plan. The direction a company is headed in, the option of an easy route into share ownership, or even the thrill of the trade!
But there’s one far more powerful driver though that motivates us all, as consumers, to buy or sign up for anything. And that’s knowing what the benefit to our lives will be.
Our fictional character ‘Sam’ works at company X. Company X is launching an SAYE share plan, which includes a tax-free bonus at the end of the savings period.
Sam reads all about it. He understands that if he joins, he’ll be rewarded for any future success he helps generate. He sees that the plan is an easy and affordable route into share ownership. He’s encouraged by the flexibility of the plan – he can opt out at any time.
All these things appeal to Sam and he’s warming to the idea of joining, but these aren’t the deal-clincher for him.
Sam has a young family, and he’s saving to buy a house. The part of the plan that speaks to him is the savings part. With the aid of some carefully crafted communication, Company X has dialled this particular aspect of its SAYE up. Sam understands that he’ll earn interest on his savings (after a year) and that at the end of the plan, he can either take his savings (and bonus) back or start his shareholder journey. He understands that either way, if he joins the SAYE, he’ll be able to add to his savings pot. And it’s this knowledge that has him heading over to the sign-up portal.
Use the principles of marketing
This is a basic example – but one that demonstrates how meeting employees at their stage of life can encourage their participation in a share plan or other reward incentive. It’s not a rocket-science approach – more one that just lends itself to the principles of marketing. Basic examples aside, what does any of this look like in practice, for an organisation looking to position its share plan communications around employee life-stage?
Know your audience
Doing this bit of groundwork up front really is key to helping you create share plan messaging that will resonate. This isn’t to say that everyone within an organisation is going to fit neatly within boxes. But if you know that a large proportion of your workforce is made up of under 30s who are tuned into savvy investment opportunities, how can your share plan proposition speak to them? Or perhaps it’s the over 40s who are already super-conscious about having a healthy savings-pot ahead of retirement.
This leads us neatly into our next point…
Segment your share plan communications
Technology allows us to be increasingly tailored in our communications to employees, and this is worth bearing in mind when it comes to your share plan communications. How can you tailor your content to different audience groups to bring your share plan to life in ways that really speak to their current wants and needs?
For example, you might create a series of short videos that bring your share plan to life. One video might introduce Joe, who participated in a SIP for several years and used his share profit to grow his retirement pot. Another might introduce Bella, who used her SAYE to safely store money toward her wedding and use any share profit as a ‘bonus’ toward her honeymoon. Stories like these create identification and, executed well, can create a marked uplift in your share plan engagement and participation.
Consistency is king
To help you stay consistent, you can be guided by some of the personal reasons employees signed up to your share plan. Think about communications you can create that might support some of these decisions. If know you’re communicating with a large segment that are motivated by the savings aspect of a plan, what sort of education can you provide around things like interest rates, or applicable tax savings?
These ideas just scratch the surface, but hopefully get you thinking about how you can create share plan communications that meet your employees around the life moments that matter.
If you need help with share plan communications, contact us for an informal chat.