According to a fall 2010 survey of chief marketing officers (see, http://www.thecmoclub.com/pg/newsletters/view/23544), few companies have formal programs to engage new employees as brand ambassadors, and to keep all employees trained and empowered to stay on message.
The companies that do, understand that a brand is more than logos and trademarks: It’s the sum of how people think, feel, and respond when they see or hear your name, shaped by the corporate choices and employee behaviors that drive your story and your customers’ experiences.
If employees don’t know what you stand for, or if your policies and practices don’t support your brand promises, the best marketing and advertising campaigns in the world won’t deliver the results you’re seeking. Every employee-customer contact can strengthen or weaken your brand. Brand consistency is key.
This holiday season I’ve heard many comments from employees who clearly are NOT brand ambassadors. The story they tell doesn’t sound like the story their employer wants me to hear. Maybe these employees are underpaid, underappreciated and overworked. They are clearly undertrained and under committed. Either way, I don’t blame them. I blame their bosses.
Want employees to be an ambassador for your brand?
- Make sure they understand and embrace your story.
- Make sure your corporate decisions are consistent with that story.
- Know what you stand for and act accordingly.
- Be clear and be diligent about what’s happening at customer touch points.