Based on a True Story
A few years back, I worked with a finance firm. My role wasn’t in any way connected to the marketing and publicity department, but somehow the company found a way to make everyone a brand ambassador.
Every year, they would reward staff members who brought leads or customers to the company. The higher the number of customers/leads you bring, the greater your reward.
Initially, I never took the scheme seriously, so I never bothered about bringing leads. Imagine my surprise when I saw folks getting rewarded with up to $2.5k rewards in cash prizes by the end of the year.
I was only one of few who didn’t win any reward that day. Although I was pained, I was motivated to put in the work the following year to make sure I got rewarded, too.
How to include your employees in your brand marketing
The minute I realized I was writing an article on this topic, I remembered my experience at the finance firm I once worked at.
You, too, can leverage similar tactics to involve your employees in marketing your business. Think of the number of manpower working in your company. If all of them can play a part in your brand’s marketing, how many more leads do you think you’ll land? A lot, obviously.
For the next few lines of this piece, we’ll be looking at a number of strategies businesses can use to involve their employees in brand marketing.
1. Ask for their help outright and let them understand what’s at stake
If you’re good to your employees, chances are they will be loyal to you. In light of that loyalty, you can bet they would want nothing other than to see your business thriving.
Unfortunately, many workers don’t even know how their company is doing, let alone how they can be of help. Bridge this gap by carrying your staff members along. Of course, you want some information to remain secret, but stuff like a low turnover or a drop in customer base shouldn’t be kept a secret.
2. Help them visualize how they can come in
Now, you’ve made them aware the company could use their help. That’s step one. The next course of action is to help them understand how they come in.
Remember, many of your staff members aren’t marketers, so they’re bound to be novices on the subject of marketing. Make them understand their roles by painting the perfect picture.
Talking is good, but you want to do more than verbal explanations. Take the time to create a comprehensible flowchart that will show workers the challenge and the next course of action. A simple flowchart can help you showcase the various marketing strategies you plan to use to revive the business. When you’re done with that, you can throw in swimlanes (a special kind of flowchart) to make each department and worker understand how they can be of assistance.
You can use an online flowchart maker to create these sorts of charts. They help you create charts on the go in less than a few minutes, and you can share the charts with staff anywhere. What makes such tools even amazing is the fact they’re free.
3. Teach them the right strategies
Depending on how you want your workers to contribute to your business marketing, you may need to teach them the actual strategies they need.
For example, if you need your staff to post your brand on their social media pages, you should teach them how to write killer captions, the best time of day to post, and stuff like that.
If you want them to meet and network with prospects directly, give them tips on how to present their pitch, things to say, and stuff like that.
By and large, make sure your workers are well-informed on how to execute the marketing chore you’ve tasked them with.
4. Make it easy to pitch your brand
Branding is a key element in marketing. And it goes beyond logo selection or business name identification. Before you push your workers out to do your marketing, make sure your business is marketable.
Are your products well-manufactured? Are your employees well dressed? What is the public opinion about your brand?
If you suck on the branding front, you bet your employees will be reluctant to talk to people about you. Nobody likes being associated with something or someone that sucks.
5. Make them brand ambassadors
Did you know the impression people have of your employees can attract new prospects to your brand?
Yes, that’s absolutely correct. And I’m going to prove it to you.
Let’s assume you’re a fashion brand.
And then, one day, you decide to send your employees to represent you at a conference that features consumers and stakeholders in the industry. Now, imagine that your employees arrive at this event looking classier than most; how do you think people will react to them?
A lot of folks will want to meet them to learn the secret about their outfits. All they have to do is respond with your brand name, and you bet plenty of those people will come knocking on your door the next morning.
Employee branding is indeed a trick that works regardless of the industry.
Think of ways to make your employees your brand ambassadors and watch the effect that will have on your overall bottom line.
6. Provide them with the tools they need to create a buzz for your brand
Social media is where most of your workers will likely want to begin their marketing. Equip them with the right tools to carry out effective marketing on any platform they choose.
For example, if they choose to post about your brand on Instagram, give them access to post scheduling tools or hashtagging tools. If they want to create a buzz with word-of-mouth marketing, help them get into places where they can do that – e.g., conferences, meetups, industry-relevant seminars, training programs, etc.
7. Reward them
Finally, reward them.
Employees are more likely to pitch your brand to people when they know there’s something in it for them. You can create an employee reward program like the one I spoke about in the introduction section of this post. Or you can reward with other things.