Brand advocacy is often overlooked when it comes to brand and communications in general. The goal of your communication’s team should be “how can we get people excited about this new change?” Because, let’s be honest, it will mean a lot of work for many departments: updating their documents, changing how they represent the company, changing your habits. Anyone will tell you that rebranding is a HUGE endeavor. There is a lot to do: new website, new collateral, new messaging. This involves a lot of people in your organization. Without getting folks excited about your rebranding effort, it will be a lot of work for folks who have “other daytime jobs.”
If you begin with “ we are going to need you to do x,w,z”, no one will be excited. When was the last time you raised your hand and said, “ I like to do more work if possible, please?” I can tell you never. #hashtag #saidnoone
PRSA had featured an article about the importance of brand and I think it is important to note it here because it summarizes why your organization’s employees are not only important to marketing efforts, but vital:
“Our employees are our brand — the champions of the goods or services that our organization puts out to the world. They have knowledge of the organization and can speak about us in a genuine and authentic way.
Empowering employees to act as brand advocates will give them the confidence to reach their potential; likewise, their actions will contribute to the organization’s ability to deliver on its mission and brand promise.”
It’s about getting employees connected and that cannot be done with telling them that the rebrand is going to be great. It about getting them involved so that they see how great it is/ will be. Do not tell me, but show me.
There are many big brands doing this well, which we all can name off the top of our heads. But even mid to small organization have a unique and competitive advantage to actually involving their folks in it. Why? You have fewer folks to wrangle, therefore, have a unique opportunity to engage very personally with them.
Get your employees involved and involved early. This way they feel connected and will be willing to participate more than just sending them an e-mail about “brand updates.” Who cares about that? That does not sound one bit interesting to me. But, if you change the conversation about how you want them involved that changes the perception and ultimately outcome.