We often forget that coworkers at every level are the best brand ambassadors. Whether talking about the company, or one of our products, it is critical that everyone is on the same page with the messaging. It helps communicate a consistent narrative and builds stronger brands. Ultimately, we want everyone to have the same picture in their heads when they think about our company and/or brand(s).
I have found that the fix is really pretty easy and worth the effort.
First one needs to make sure that those at the highest level have agreed upon what the messaging should be. An excellent exercise to establish a baseline for where you and your company are is to simply pose the question, “In one or two sentences, (approximately 30 seconds) tell me about our company and what makes us special or different?” When commenting on a product or brand, make sure you address the issue of “Why.” Why do people need/like our product? Why is it better than our competitors? Why us? What problem do we solve? Why do we do what we do? To help find your “Why,” check out The Power of Why by Simon Sinek.
I also find that an excellent start to the dialogue is, “We’re known for…” Or, “You know how [state the problem], we [our solution to that problem]…”
Note: Experience has shown me that it is most useful to get the entire company to participate in the crafting of the elevator speech. That way, there is more of a sense of ownership in the message. It will also illustrate how different initial perceptions are. Try this exercise, and you’ll be amazed at how many people do not know what to say when asked about your company or brand(s).
Once messaging has been established and agreed upon, roll it out company-wide. Be sure to put it in writing and follow up to make sure everyone is clear and could handle things well when asked, “Tell me about XYZ.”
To encourage associates to master their elevator pitch, don’t be afraid to offer incentives upon success. Consider offering a PTO day/half day. Premium parking spot for a week, company branded merchandise, etc.
When everyone is on the same page with the messaging. It helps communicate a consistent narrative and builds stronger brands.