Let Your Company Culture Inspire Your Brand

Earlier this week, I had the opportunity to present a webinar to the Columbus Chamber of Commerce discussing how our culture (internal brand) influences our external brand.  Put in human terms, we learned that in organizations, as in life, beauty is only skin deep; it’s what’s on the inside that counts.  It was the best turn out the chamber has had for their webinar series, which points to the fact that leaders are once again paying attention to what’s on the inside — core mission, vision and values because it totally impacts what happens on the outside — how well we get and keep customers.

Creating synergy between a company’s core (what it stands for and how it behaves) and its external brand promise and brand position is critical in the wake of consumers demanding authenticity and transparency from those they choose to do business with.  Actions do speak louder than words and social media makes sure we hear them — the good, the bad and the ugly.

Here are five steps discussed in the Webinar to get you thinking about whether you are living your brand:

Can you think of companies that have been trying to fake it ’til they make it, only to be busted for their empty brand promises?  Companies whose actions speak louder than their empty brand promises? How about companies whose employees behave like they neither know nor believe what they are representing, or why?  A random sample among Marketing Works’ staff  includes Delta, Facebook, RIM (Blackberry), and Time Warner.

Let’s consider companies who are living their brand every day in every day, inside and out.  Examples we looked at included local companies like Cameron Mitchell Restaurants and Elford Construction, along with Southwest, Zappos, Whole Foods and Starbucks.  Staff favorites for companies who live their brand include Chick fil a, Amazon and Apple.

At Marketing Works, we believe understanding and living your company culture is the key to authenticity inside and out, which translates to success. That’s why we offer Companies are People, Too as a tool to help you recognize and harness that brand synergy. For a free Companies Are People Too cultural assessment, click here.

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