How Antalis Leads Its Industry on Social with Employee Ambassadors
The paper, packaging and visual communication distributor uses a social-first strategy to unify communications, streamline recruiting, and drive growth.
Antalis is Europe’s leading B2B distributor of paper, packaging solutions, and visual communication products, with offices in 39 countries and global sales of €2.1 billion.
With 4,700 employees in 39 countries and global sales of €2.1 billion, Antalis is Europe’s leading distributor of paper, packaging solutions, and visual communication products for professionals. When Franck Chenet joined Antalis as Digital Transformation and Marketing Services Director, he saw an immediate opportunity for the organization to become a social leader in an industry that has been slow to adapt to the new digital landscape.
Envisioning a social strategy that would unify internal and external communications, build Antalis’s employer brand, and use social-first campaigns to drive rapid growth, Chenet and the marketing team set about looking for a technology and strategy partner to make the plan a reality—and quickly turned to Hootsuite.
- 300%increase in share of web traffic to campaign site from social media
- 87%adoption rate for employee ambassador programme
- 2,400shares of Amplify content last year
- 3 weeksjob recruitment cut by an average of 3 weeks
At the outset, Antalis did not have a specific digital marketing strategy and was using social media in a decentralized way with little coordination between regions. Chenet knew that the marketing team needed a partner that could provide the platform, training, and support needed for a global overhaul of the company’s social media strategy and programmes.
Working with Hootsuite, Antalis set out to achieve the following objectives:
Make social media an integral part of Antalis’s internal and external communications strategy
Consolidate social accounts and unify content across regions with a distinctive brand voice
Support recruiting and increase lead generation with social-first campaigns amplified through an employee ambassador programme
Establish Antalis as a social-first and digital-first leader in the B2B paper and packaging industry
How they did it
Centralised social strategy to strengthen and unify their digital brand
To establish a foundation for the organization’s digital transformation, the team began with an audit of Antalis’s social media accounts and activity across the business. Content was being created in silos, with no centralized messaging or brand design across accounts and regions. At one point, the team uncovered 52 separate LinkedIn accounts attributed to Antalis across 39 different regions.
After reviewing and consolidating social accounts, the team used Hootsuite’s shared content library to build a central collection of high-quality, brand-approved social content that could then be easily distributed to all regions. Equipped with this resource, teams across all regions can quickly find and publish preapproved content across platforms, channels, and countries.
This centralised model enables more structured governance for social content, creating a single overview of social media activities across regions that helps teams collaborate and localise content while ensuring that messaging and design stay on brand. Armed with insights from this overview, the team gained a clear view of where they should be building brand equity, creating additional content, and focusing their efforts to drive employee advocacy.
Partnered with social experts to rapidly build expertise and capabilities
The next phase of Antalis’s digital transformation entailed designing and rolling out an employee ambassador programme using Hootsuite Amplify. Goals and scope for the programme were broad and ambitious, including improvements to internal communications, support for recruiting and employer branding efforts, as well as social-first campaigns to drive lead generation and growth.
To guide strategic planning and ensure an effective programme rollout, the team leaned on Hootsuite for expertise. As part of training and development, Hootsuite invited two of its other B2B customers who were already using Amplify to share guidance, best practices, and third-party feedback on their experiences rolling out their own ambassador programmes with Hootsuite.
Using Hootsuite Amplify, Antalis can now share approved content beyond its social teams, enabling employees across the business to find and share relevant and engaging posts to their social networks. This capability is key in boosting the company’s employer brand to support more effective recruiting, and also in driving social-first campaigns to support increased lead generation for the business.
Having Hootsuite is like having access to a toolbox on how to do social right. Hootsuite helped us with benchmarking, training, and implementation, and they take on our feedback too. That’s the definition of a good partner: one that optimises the partnership.
Generated new leads via social-first campaigns
With a strong ambassador programme established, Antalis was ready to begin ramping up its customer marketing with social-first campaigns to drive new leads and growth.
As a way to highlight the extensive and often highly innovative use of its products by architectural firms, printers, and interior design professionals and agencies, the marketing team decided to launch the Antalis Interior Design Award—a competition showcasing creative design in home interiors, offices, retail and hospitality spaces, public premises, and 3D projects.
The first edition of the award saw 341 projects submitted, generated significant engagement on social, and showcased innovative uses of Antalis’s products to a global audience. When the team ran a subsequent edition two years later, project submissions grew to 535 projects—and the share of traffic generated by social media grew from 5% for the first edition to over 20% for the second edition.
After four years of using Hootsuite, the partnership continues to pay dividends, with Chenet and team looking forward to continuing to work with Hootsuite. And with an 87% adoption rate and more than 2,400 shares of Amplify content last year, the ambassador programme continues to be a strong foundation for the company’s social and digital initiatives.
As Antalis continues to drive the programme forward, the next focus will be on training its ambassadors on social selling via Amplify and LinkedIn, working with them to refine selling techniques and provide relevant and effective sales enablement content. The company also aims to continue bridging its social and web performance data to measure and optimize its return on investment in social.
From the results to date, it’s clear that Antalis has taken a huge leap forward in its digital transformation journey—paving the way for even greater reach for this global distributor.