Developing a brand is hard work, and can take a lot of time and cost a lot of money. When it comes time to launch your brand, it’s important not to overlook a critical category of stakeholders: your employees.
You should ensure that your employees are aligned with and understand your new vision – that they know how and why this branding has been adopted.
Your internal communication efforts should reflect what you are doing outside of the organization, and this includes the elements of your branding as well as the overall way in which your company represents itself.
Not only will this keep your employees familiar with the brand identity, but incorporating it in your internal efforts will also help to ensure that the brand is authentic – not just something you put on “for show” for the outside world.
Your brand strategy should be every employee’s priority and they should live the brand. When your employees are emotionally invested in your brand it’s likely they will be more loyal to the company, be more productive and inspired and be motivated and innovative.
Some of the best practices for internal branding include:
· Having a clear company vision and purpose. Your senior management team should be involved in developing this and be committed to putting the words into action and modeling your ideal values and behaviors.
· Determine your objectives and set up metrics for measurement.
· Communicate your branding with employees.
· Translate your external branding to your employees in a way that they understand it and can relate to it so they deliver it in their everyday roles within your company.
· Align the branding with external efforts.
· Encourage employee participation and dialogue around what the branding says to them.
· Set up a system where you have employee brand ambassadors to reflect your branding.
· Be consistent, clear and authentic with your messages. If you are none of these things, it will show.
· Be clear about why you want to change your branding.
· Build excitement and buzz around your brand among your employees – try to make a personal connection with them to do this. Once they are enthusiastic about it, you’ll need to find ways to keep the momentum going.
· Make sure you are launching your new branding at the right time. For example if you’ve just laid off a percentage of your workforce, your efforts to rebrand may fall flat and those remaining employees may be resentful of money spent on branding that cold have been used to save jobs.
· Look for new and innovative ways to reinforce your branding throughout your company. Think beyond letterhead and business cards and a logo on the wall of your lobby.
· Train your employees to live and breathe your brand by giving them tools and empowering them to model the correct behaviors and mindset.
· Give employees incentives and reward and recognize their efforts when actively promoting and living the brand identity.
· Don’t just set and forget your branding – keep monitoring it and updating it to ensure it represents your company in the best way possible.
· Listen to your employees – they’re the ones at the coalface of your operations. Their opinions and feedback can help save you from embarrassment.
Benefits of internal branding include:
1. Improving your hiring and retention
The ultimate goal is to have elements of your branding translate into behaviors modeled by your staff. This will also help you to attract and retain the types of employees that display the characteristics and attributes that are synonymous with your brand identity.
2. Fostering a relationship between employees and your branding
When your employees understand your brand and how your clients view it, they become its custodians. Your employees in effect become an extension of your brand.
3. Linking your internal and external marketing
It’s important that your employees hear the same messages inside the organization that you are sharing with the outside world. Unfortunately the reality is often the opposite in many companies. When employees hear you say one thing to the outside world and another thing internally, they can feel jaded and cynical and develop a mistrust in the integrity of your company.
4. Connecting strategies to people
Strategies can look great on paper, but when it comes to putting them into practice they might not always translate. When you get your branding right it will sync well internally and ill be an idea that your employees want to see succeed.
5. Creating brand advocates
Word of mouth is one of the most powerful ways to market your products or services. What better way than to have your own employees advocate for your company because they identify with and believe in the brand?
6. Ensure your employees are delivering a branded customer experience
When your employees completely understand the ethos of your brand, the way they interact with customers will become part of the brand’s identity. When they are emotionally connected with the brand they can then connect with people on the outside of the organization.
7. Distinguish your company from the rest
A strong brand will cement your reputation and the unique aspects of your organization that make it attractive to both internal and external clients.
How DeskAlerts can help with your internal branding
DeskAlerts is a powerful internal communications solution that has many tools to help you reinforce your internal branding.
Aside from being able to send pop-up notifications to your employees’ computer screens to improve internal communications, there are add-on features such as digital signage, corporate wallpaper and screen savers that can help you to passively reinforce your branding throughout your organization.
DeskAlerts is completely customizable and you can use any of its features to deliver branded content that looks professional to any screen in your company that can be viewed by employees and visitors to your organization alike.