It Takes a Village To Raise a Brand

They say it takes a village to raise a child, and your brand is no different.  When considering modern marketing, it’s easy to get lost in the print and digital, billboards and blimps, and forget that the true value of your marketing runs root to tip.  One of the most rudimentary features of your brand, yet most commonly overlooked, is right in the palm of your hand: your employees.

Day in, and day out, they spend eight ten hours a day, forty fifty hours a week completely immersed in your brand.  They engage in it, they develop it, they ARE it.  We have to remember “impressions” are not just a function of your digital success, and they still carry the same definition as they did before the days of internet marketing.  Each time your employees share their occupational information with their friends, family and acquaintances, they are creating valuable and unique impressions. So, how do you leverage this embedded asset to garner accurate and positive mentions of your image?  Well, while each organization is a bit different in size, culture and demographics, here are a few ways to ensure your village is effectively raising your brand:

Promotional Items: Got ‘em, give ‘em. especially to your employees; they want one mug, give them three. Consider this: When someone lends a pen, or is complimented on a tote, they may be asked: “Who’s YourBrandCorp?” Would you rather them deliver an eloquent and accurate description of your brand and purpose, or say, “No clue. Got it at a conference, pretty handy though!”?

Which leads me to my second point…

Job Descriptions: Every employee should have two job descriptions: what they do, and what they tell people they do.  This is incredibly important if you have employees with technically specific or vague job titles.  When I first met my friend Josh, I asked him where he worked and what he did.

Cue 20 minutes of the most confusing mess of what I could only decipher as “industry terms,” all of which resulted in me having exactly zero understanding of what he – or his company – actually did.  Josh has since become a close friend of mine, and now that I know more about what he does, I can say (in my most thrown together marketing way) he builds computer parts for an organization that supplies innovative technology solutions for global manufactures. ßTHAT is MUCH better than the 20 minutes of babble that left me word drunk the first time. Point is, by providing your employees an easy way to state what they do, and who they do it for, they will be able to convey your brand the way you’ve molded it.

Quality of Life: This may be a bit of a no-brainer, but the way you treat your employees and their quality of life at work are both major factors in how they communicate your brand to others.  A satisfied employee will convey a positive impression, and a dissatisfied employee, well, we’ve all been stuck in a rant from someone who hates their job.

While, yes, there will be instances where members complain, regardless of being provided with the best working conditions possible, but on the whole, a happy staff means a happy brand.

It’s interesting to think all of the ways your customers gain impressions of your brand. What other not-so-common points of engagement do you find important?

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