Employer Branding initiatives are not a goal in and of themselves. Organizations engage in branding to help the company achieve their corporate mission. Ensuring that your employees are engaged and ready to be a part of the action is more than a simple email communication. A key part of activating your employer brand platform is a well-organized internal launch.
Communications and Storytelling
Telling the story of your company is a powerful way to engage your audience as part of your employer branding initiatives. There can be as many different stories as there are employees – as each perspective adds something new. Planning the story is a critical part of your launch.
Agree on the key messages for the CEO, for departments and for employees. In any collection of company stories, the common underlying thread is often the foundation for your Employee Value Proposition. Work with your corporate communications partners to create compelling storyboards showcasing how your leadership objectives contribute to that EVP.
Persuasive stories involve the employees so provide different avenues for your audience to be involved in bringing the brand to life. Decide what you want their role to be and plan out the ways that you will support and reward their involvement. Define what’s in it for them.
Agree on the communication vehicles you will use to launch and reinforce the branding platform. How will you use the corporate intranet? Will you use print? How will you involve the leadership team? What kind of event will you have to kick off your branding initiative?
Calendar of Events
Branding involves stakeholders from all departments and all levels. With that many moving parts, it’s important to use an event calendar to make sure you have everything lined up for the Day 1 Launch. The event kick off will be an important part of your launch – but by no means will it stand alone.
Plan touch-points to reinforce the branding message each day. You can create new log-in messages each day. Have members of your leadership team record a voice mailed “Good morning” greeting to everyone. Run a contest that invites people to share their photos of “living the brand” or telling their personal “Values stories”. Create and host “Brand Ambassador” social media training.
After your launch event, create testimonials of the day. Feature employees that have grown through the company and share these testimonials through video, digital media or in printed newsletters (or a combination of all three).
Keep momentum going by summarizing the launch event and the company objectives in a newsletter, in print or shared via email or on the company intranet. Gather employee feedback and consider sharing some of that feedback. Set people’s expectations around what they will see in the coming weeks and months and then continue to communicate progress.
Ensure that you’ve built in a feedback mechanism to gather people’s impressions. Use a town hall to ask for feedback or create a suggestion box. Ask people questions after the launch in person, via email – or through survey tools on your intranet.
Consider assigning local brand ambassadors to keep the conversations going locally. At the end of your internal employer branding launch, the goal is to have every employee understand how they have helped to build a brand you are proud of.
Stay tuned for next week; we will be sharing some creative ideas on launching your brand externally!