If your organization thinks, Branding is only required for customers, then you need to Think again! You are losing out on a critical community of stakeholders who are going to do half your work.
Yes, your employees!
While creating a brand, we build on a logo, a creative design, colour, advertisement copies, marketing collaterals and importantly a brand guide but tend to forget our very own brand ambassadors – our employees who are expected to provide ‘the experience’ to external stakeholders, carve out a niche for the organization and create a unique & strategic position in the market thereby ensuring growth. A brand today symbolizes the culture, the values, the soul of the organization and hence creating a compelling employer brand is key to engage employees and enhance their effectiveness and hence the organizations.
Organizations need to look inside-out. Branding needs to start from the inside. Employees need to understand, believe and embrace the brand, only then can they deliver the Brand promise to the customer.
Internal Branding is an imperative and the only way for employees to make an emotional connect with the organization, the products and services it sells and its clients. After all, if employees are not passionate about the company and its products/services why would any customer be?
Without internal branding employees tend to miss out on the expectations set by the organization, they fail to recognize the commitment made to the customers, a sense of common purpose and identity is missing. When employees are aligned to the Brand and understand what the company stands for then they start contributing in ways that are meaningful and their productivity goes up. They start speaking positively and with authority about the Brand. Their performance improves, they become brand ambassadors!
A few strategic measures need to be adopted to create Internal Branding which resonates with employees and drives productivity.
- Give the job to the experts: Yes, the marketing team needs to work with the HR Team to create
- Maintain consistency: In order for employees to understand the brand and its vision, we need to ensure consistency in the external and internal branding and thus create a feeling trust and integrity in the company’s offering. For a company which propagates ‘saving the environment’ as part of its vision actually recognizes and celebrates employees with green habits – could be cycling to work, sharing rides etc…
- Make the Brand come alive: It is important to make the brand come alive for the employees and the organization actually ‘walks the talk’. It could be as simple as acknowledging and rewarding employees for creating WOW moments for clients, wherein the company has a ‘Client-First’ mission.
- Produce brand advocates consistently: Application of the above strategies is sure to build brand ambassadors. Empower and Encourage employees to advocate your brand. Celebrate brand advocacy and advocates, create role models
- Invest in employee brand engagement campaigns and measure the impact: Run impactful campaigns, recognize and reward internal brand champions …keep it simple an extra day off , birthday off, movie vouchers , gift vouchers etc. Constantly reinforce , conduct awareness and attitude surveys
I believe that a successful internal branding strategy will cement the employee’s commitment to the company, align them to the values, play a key role in recruitment to identify the right fit, improve retention and relationships with customers.
Start your Employee Branding journey today!
Think Branding, Think Employees…Yes, you’ve got it right!