- Human Resource
Are you ignoring your brand ambassador?
It's surprisingly simple. Send your sales force out; arm them with a few glib lines; let them zero-in on prospects and then spill it all out to them.
There, you have it. The easiest way of destroying your brand image and ensuring that your sales pitch is thrown right out of the window.
Ruining your brand image is any day easier than building it. Of course, this is not the only way of doing it. You could also ensure long-lasting damage to your credibility and image by sending out badly-designed communication material. Such as, a casually put-together newsletter.
Not many realise, but a newsletter is as much a brand ambassador for your company, as your celebrity endorser is. What's more, this brand ambassador has more advantages than your celebrity does. It can be sent time and again. Can be left behind with the client or prospect. Can be customised to meet your requirements. And, at costs that'll surely have your finance team nodding in delight.
This journal can aid in creating brand recall for your company. Select topics that will interest your target audience. Add a bit of style, a dash of creative design, and you have ready a classy newsletter. Send it to your audience. Free. They'll certainly give it a second look. As unlike your mailer or brochure, it's offering them information, and not trying to hard-sell. Hard-sell meets with resistance and a guarded mind. But not information. Do this periodically and your audience will want to know more about the brand bringing it to them. Subtly place company information in it, and you would have surely managed to strike a chord with/leave a mark on your desired audience.
So, you've overcome the first barrier of resistance. Next, capitalise on the gain. After a few consecutive issues, when you've managed to create your brand image, your marketing executive can interact directly with the prospect. He will certainly have a more willing audience now than if he had tried forcing a sales pitch earlier. Weaving a product or service info into this conversation will hardly be difficult for your representative now.
Here's a tip. The newsletter is also useful if you want to keep in touch with your existing clients. What better way to say ‘hi,' and tell your clients you remember them? Or, to share your company's achievements and latest developments? However, the trick is to get it right. You could get your Marketing team to piece it together and mail it out. But it should have the same class and panache as a professionally-designed one. It should also be in tune with your design guidelines to link it with your corporate identity.
Moreover, since the newsletter is your company's brand ambassador, it should have as much an impact as a TV commercial or a newspaper advertisement would. Therefore, it requires the same care and thought in execution. It wouldn't do to have a badly dressed ambassador or to let clients spot flaws, would it? So, let the professionals do their work. Treat every newsletter as a marketing initiative that needs priority.
Internally too, the newsletter can help achieve goals. It can bring together employees scattered across locations, inject a sense of belonging, and increase enthusiasm. It can act as their forum to share and communicate news and thoughts. The result: improved productivity, greater contribution, hence, better sales. All in all, it implies better bottom lines.
So, if you want to put your corporate communications right, it's time you gave the newsletter a chance; and your brand ambassador the credit it deserves.
Sandeep Nanu runs a Bangalore-based corporate communications agency, CBEYOND Design Pvt Ltd, which focusses on creating newsletters. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org
Issue BG73 Apr07