One of your best marketing resources is right under your nose.
There’s a lot of demands on businesses these days to be all over marketing. From amazing websites to innovative social media campaigns and don’t forget that there’s still advertising to do, as well as optimising customer experiences and when was the last time you posted a blog?????
It can be exhausting and very time-consuming. Which is why it’s not surprising that we spend so much time looking outward that we often forget about the importance of internal marketing.
Here's a short story...
A man walks into a coffee shop and asks to know the difference between two types of coffee bean. ‘I’m not sure’ replies the server ‘I think one’s a bit stronger’. ‘But’ says the man ‘I came here because I saw your ad that said “all our baristas have an in-depth knowledge of our range of coffees and are happy to talk you through the different tasting notes”’. ‘Oh’ says the server ‘they haven’t told me that and I haven’t seen that advert. So, do you want a coffee or not?’
The customer in this scenario feels let down and dissatisfied. But, how does the employee feel? Well, actually probably a bit the same. It’s human nature to want to please others and when we make others happy we also feel happy. The employee here probably feels like they haven’t done a great job and that’s quite demotivating. They probably also feel frustrated that they haven’t been supported by their employer to do their job to the best of their ability – this also leads to feeling demotivated. Can you see where I’m going with this?
Internal marketing is about making sure that everyone within a company knows and buys into that company’s vision, goals and brand values. There can be no ambiguity about this! Confusion leads to mixed messages which leads to frustration. When everyone is in the loop, we act as a more cohesive team. Think about your own business and how many different ways your customers might come into contact with it. It’s crucial that everyone understands the marketing plan and presents the same ‘story’ to provide consistent service across the board. Ensuring everyone’s in the loop avoids over-promising and under delivering, and thereby encourages retention and loyalty.
Think of employees as ambassadors. Studies have shown that engaged employees are 30-50% more productive than there unengaged counterparts. In fact, I’d go so far as to say that employees are one of the most under-recognised allies a business has. You might have the best marketing strategy and a top notch marketing team but if the people who are actually engaging on a day to day basis with your customers don’t know about it and aren’t bought into it then you won’t be achieving your businesses full potential.
It’s an old phrase but worth re-iterating:- you’ve got to walk the walk as well as talk the talk! But how do you do that? Well, to start with you have to share the values, vision and goals of the business with your team – after all, you’re not going to manage it all by yourself are you? But it’s more than that. You need to live those values internally too. Engaged employees will deliver a much better customer experience and those customers are more likely to come back and tell their friends.
Don’t think of this as another drain on your resources – bought in employees are definitely an asset! You’ll get valuable feedback and insight into how you can constantly improve the customer experience.
These don’t have to be costly initiatives but do require a bit of thought and effort.
When did you last think of your workforce as a marketing tool?
If you’d like to have a chat about how to add value to your business brand through internal marketing get in touch!