Staying On-Brand: The Power of Effective Brand Messaging

Published on August 7, 2023

Companies often say that it’s important for their employees to be “on-brand,” but what does this really mean, and why is it important? Being on-brand means that people communicate and engage in a way that aligns with the brand message and reinforces the company’s values, culture and identity. An on-brand team drives a cohesive and consistent brand experience, which converts prospects and retains customers.

When people aren't on-brand, their inconsistent behaviors and use of brand messaging fractures the brand experience and negatively influences purchasing decisions. Comments like, "I thought they specialized in X, not Y," "Their response times are always slow," or "The team seems disjointed, and their messages don't align," are common outcomes of such inconsistencies. 

The Key To Being On-Brand: Consistent Brand Messaging

One of the most strategically important parts of a company brand is its messaging – and how people within the company describe it to others. Employees have opportunities to do so every day, in various ways, when speaking with others and in written communications. Yet, most companies fail to provide their people with adequate training related to brand messaging. Even if everyone is asked to use language from marketing assets, many will still not align with brand messaging because doing so effectively takes more than memorizing a few lines – especially because they often vary across materials.

Three Easy Ways To Get Employees On-Brand Through Company Messaging

The first thing to get employees on-brand is to communicate clearly what the brand message is, why it’s important to use it and what they stand to lose if they don’t apply it consistently. It’s also important to include that the messaging was written to communicate who you are as a company and the value you offer in a strategic way to attract and resonate with target customers and stakeholders.

Highlighting the benefits of their efforts encourages buy-in and cultivates a shared sense of purpose and identity, which increases engagement and loyalty and helps amplify a unified narrative. When everyone on the team aligns how they speak and write about the company, they help build trust, differentiate the company from competitors and improve business outcomes.

Instead of just sending an email requesting that everyone uses the company’s brand messaging, try these three approaches:

  1. Offer long and short versions of the company description, allowing employees to tailor their message based on the situation. By providing flexibility in the length and depth of the brand story, people can adapt what they say to suit different contexts, whether it's a brief introduction or a more detailed conversation. A one-liner, a few sentences and a paragraph are most helpful.
  2. Give examples of integrating brand messaging into emails, LinkedIn profile content and messaging, and more. By sharing specific, practical examples, your team will better understand how to incorporate the brand narrative consistently and effectively across various channels.
  3. Coach senior executives as model brand ambassadors who actively communicate and reinforce the brand narrative, which helps others follow suit. For a quick, helpful exercise, then have employees observe the senior executives whenever possible to see how they work brand messaging into introductions, presentations and other interactions.

A Worthwhile Challenge

Getting employees on-brand and integrating proper brand messaging into their communications isn't easy. However, it’s a worthwhile and necessary pursuit because otherwise:

  • Prospects may get a partial picture of your services and be compelled to look elsewhere for help.
  • Customers may think that you're moving away from working with businesses like theirs and that your core expertise no longer aligns with their needs.
  • Potential hires will leave your talent pool for competitors who present stronger employer brands.
  • When employees contribute to a more consistent, positive brand experience, not only does this boost their engagement, but it also helps convert prospects, retain loyal customers and attract top talent.

Need help getting your team on-brand? Point Road Group can help. Contact us today.

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