Organizations spend a lot of effort and revenue on marketing to consumers and shareholders, and on developing brand recognition. They do market research, collect data and develop strategic marketing campaigns.
However, these same companies are often missing one of their greatest marketing opportunities – their own employees. In an age when employee engagement is as critical as keeping customers happy, why not focus on building your internal brand? It’s time to think like a marketer!
Studies show that employee engagement has a significant impact on the bottom line:
- Productivity improves up to 25% in organizations where employees are engaged. (Source: The McKinsey Global Institute)
- Yet, 7 out of 8 employees are not engaged at work. (Source: Gallup poll)
Consider Your Employer Value Proposition?
Employers spend a significant amount on programs and benefits to attract and retain top talent. However, too often these programs are not fully understood or appreciated by employees. Promoting your internal brand – or your employer value proposition – ensures that employees understand and appreciate: the value of their benefits and compensation, opportunities for professional growth, the work culture, and essentially everything that makes the company a great place to work.
If you’re not promoting your internal brand, it’s like developing a new product or service, but not telling anyone about it. It’s simply a missed opportunity to improve your organization’s bottom line.
How to Think Like a Marketer
As internal communicators, we may need to borrow the playbook from the marketing department. Think about how marketers or advertisers connect with their customers.
Successful marketers understand that they are motivating their intended audience toward a desired behavior. They use data to understand their customers (and, believe me, they would be envious of the employee data available to you). They use multiple touch points to engage their consumers and inspire interaction. To do this well, a marketer might want to consider these key questions:
- What is my overarching goal? Can I measure it?
- Who are my audiences? What do they care about and need?
- How will I engage them? What are the key messages for each segment?
- How can I be relevant right now? What does this mean to employees?
- What is the best way to reach and engage this audience? How do they best receive information?
- What action am I trying to motivate? What do I want them to do and when should that happen?
- How will I know if I am successful? How can I continue to engage?
It’s important to connect with your employees as valued internal customers. When you adopt a marketing mindset, your ongoing communications efforts will lead to higher levels of employee engagement and greater loyalty.