When we say your brand should shine from the inside out, we mean it — brands need to be authentic, down to a pretty granular level. A company is comprised of the people in it, and if you really want your company to reflect your brand, you’ll need to give your people the full brand experience, too.
Last month, we had our annual Feel Good Friday, a full day of fun activities meant to build relationships within our team and grow trust throughout 20nine. But it also serves another purpose: it encourages us to live out our brand in meaningful terms every day.
Internal relations and company culture play a larger role in your brand than you may think. Each employee of a company is its most natural, and most intimately connected, brand ambassador. How better to ensure your brand lives than to create its vibe in your office and culture? It’s about being true to yourself as a company and as a brand.
These things can’t just happen as one-offs, either. It’s got to be year-round. Create unification through participation. It’s more than eating birthday cake; it’s racing to see whose team eats the most doughnuts dangling from yarn attached to the ceiling tiles (no hands allowed!). Curating experiences based on your company’s brand & personality helps to cement and realize what your brand truly is — and if you keep the spirit of your company alive in your people, they will keep the spirit alive in their work.
At 20nine, we create Master Motivating Ideas…but what do we do to motivate ourselves?
Well, obviously, we make a big deal about 29th birthdays — or, as we call them, “Prime Birthdays.” But there are tons of other examples. Our “Design Dash” challenges are an engaging and fun way to get 20niners to build their skill sets and learn new tools & techniques. “Force of July” is always a blast — a combination of president & CEO Greg’s birthday and Fourth-of-July festivities… like destroying watermelons with sledgehammers and fireworks. And the “Doodle or Die” sessions encourage employees to get more comfortable with expressing themselves visually. The options are pretty much endless.
Clients and friends ask us how they can ideate and execute these experiences in their own work environments. We’re always happy to show others how to engage their employees and for themselves, too.
Tremor Summer Bash
We had a great time inspiring the Tremor team through a summer launch for their new brand kick-off. It was a punchy and fun, yet also integral step in the process of getting the Tremor sales team to rally around new messaging, a new sales platform, and most importantly, a new mascot. Can you say “photo-op”?!
For a brand that capitalizes on the unexpected, a launch event with lots of surprises just made sense! The Fluent team got the surprise and delight of getting to rally around one of the most famous teams in the NY Mets’ history: the ’86 Mets. It perfectly fit the “scrappy, raw, two-guys-in-a-dorm room” origins (and subsequent rise) that was Fluent’s true story.
Pointroll Lobby Creative Takeover
This lobby takeover allowed the Pointroll creative team to make their space clearly reflect the brand. For a company where creativity is front-and-center, bringing that to life in the lobby was a no-brainer! We loved the idea of hosting an event to ensure the Pointroll Creative Team got to own their space in a provocative and modern way. Using a large wall as a cultural “mirror,” Pointroll’s team members were encouraged to live their manifesto, starting with splashing it across a lobby wall, blending the brand into their own space in a bold, personalized way.
Want to have a meaningful culture-building experiences that help your internal branding shine and reflect who you are as a company? Consider these 5 principles of how to “make it” with internal branding events:
- Make it fun, surprising, and unexpected — do something different.
- Make it participatory. Get the team actively involved. No wallflower excuses here!
- Make it fit your brand; create an ownable experience. As a branding effort, it’s important to put your stamp on it!
- Make it real & authentic, not contrived & forced. Know your people and what fits them.
- Make it thoughtful, unique & distinctive. The same cupcakes for every birthday aren’t memorable.
Incorporate these principles, and you’re sure to have an event with impact. Now, get out there and start planning!