Internal Communication & Change Management: A Marketing Challenge?

Posted by Michele Nichols on Fri, Jan 12, 2018

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Sometimes changing your brand demands real change internally. Your customer’s perception is reality, and a true brand can be seen and felt in every part of the organization.

In a time of market growth and consolidation, uptick in R&D spending, and accelerating product launch cycles, silos and disconnects are common.

The need for culture change may become apparent when faced with:

  • Entering a new market
  • Undertaking a new product launch
  • Loss of market share
  • Aging technologies
  • Merger & acquisition

Whatever the trigger, marketing often leads the charge. In developing marketing strategy, we cannot afford to ignore a key audience: our own people.

Here are 7 tips to improve internal communication in your organization:

  1. Over-communicate: Every important message should be said in two different ways, ideally face-to-face and written. Multi-channel marketing is never more important than in internal communications. Example: Share news in an all-hands meeting and an email newsletter.
  2. Remember, it’s about them, not you: Internal communications must reach employees how and when they work. Don’t ignore your B shift, or expect manufacturing technicians to have ready access to email. Example: We repurpose internal newsletters into digital signage in the cafeteria and other common areas.
  3. Give due credit: Highlight excellence throughout the organization, and tie it to what customers care about. Build up an image library of a broad range of your people, not just the front office.
  4. Predict follow-up questions: Prepare FAQs to ensure that your leadership is aligned on challenging issues. With any change, employees need to know what it means to them. Hit it head on.
  5. Make it measurable: How will you know if this change is working? How will you gauge success? Visible metrics help employees engage.
  6. Set standards: Build a common agreement in internal communication. Something as simple as when and how to “CC” on an email can dramatically improve productivity. Many organizations use a service level agreement (SLA) to reinforce the idea of commitment to “internal customers.”
  7. Choose your words carefully: Culture is built around language. Use internal communications to teach employees the language of your customer.

Learn more about internal communication and change management strategy, or contact us to discuss your business challenges.

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Topics: Internal Communication, Marketing Strategy