Outsource2Us explains the importance of internal branding and making sure your employees are promoting the right brand messages.
When people think about marketing, they think of marketing to customers. However, there is another ‘market segment’ that is just as important. They are the people you eat your lunch with, the people you share a desk with – your employees!
Why is marketing to your own employees important? It comes down to one simple fact: your employees are the face of your business. They are the people who interact most with your customers. Your employees embody your brand and make it come alive to clients. Not to mention, clients are more likely to connect with your brand if they have a good understanding of what you are about, reinforced by the experience your staff delivers.
With this in mind, are you and your staff on the same page? If you cannot say with complete confidence that your employees know what your brand promise is, your brand values and how to articulate your brand messages, then chances are you need to revisit your internal marketing strategy.
There may never be a ‘one size fits all’ approach to internal branding, but here are four helpful tips to make sure you and your staff are on the same page.
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1. Define your values and mission.
Identify what makes your business unique, cultivate it and celebrate it. Once your employees understand what you are trying to achieve, your goals become their goals. No longer are your employees working to earn a wage, they are also contributing to something special, something exciting and they become your ambassadors in the community.
2. Involve your people
Don’t limit idea generation to management meetings, give your employees an opportunity to contribute their thoughts and idea too. Allowing staff to participate is a great way to provide employees with a sense of ownership that will increase engagement and receptiveness to a new concept. Employees will then become advocates and spread the word about the new concept.
3. Give your internal brand an identity
Considering that your external brand has a logo, font, set colours, its own tag lines, look and feel, why shouldn’t your internal brand have the same? Incorporate your values and key words that resonate with your staff into staff documents, make a theme at your next company conference and incorporate into visuals around the office such a word cloud or internal posters.
4. Spread the word
It takes more than an internal memo and the odd poster in the lunchroom to create an emotional connection between employees and the brand. You need to host a launch party for your internal brand and ensure more detailed information is easily accessible via your employee intranet.
Last year, Outsource2Us came together as a company and redefined our key positioning statement, our values and our mission statement. This has given new life to the Outsource2Us brand and has allowed staff to become ambassadors of our brand. To personify this, we created posters that communicate our new values.
Although it takes times and work to cultivate a strong internal brand, the payoff is worth the time and effort invested when you get it right.