Inspire Your Employees

When I was in college, I had quite a few side jobs. A lot of times, they involved preschoolers, but when they didn’t involve preschoolers, they involved brands.

Over two years, I held three different Brand Ambassador positions with Glacéau,, and Procter & Gamble. Basically, my job with each one was to be a brand evangelist in the most enthusiastic way possible. I talked the brand up, delivered free stuff to people, shared discount codes, hosted events, managed Facebook pages, plastered the campus with stickers, and drank more than a reasonable amount of vitaminwater (it’s hard to avoid with cases of it in your garage).

They were all pretty great gigs, especially for a college student. I mean, I was getting paid to hand out free stuff and share a brand’s mission and vision with other students. It was even better because I personally loved the products I was telling others about. And honestly, it worked. It got samples into the hands of each brand’s target market and generated awareness, social media growth, and ultimately, sales.

There are a lot of lessons here related to word of mouth marketing and the value of “free,” but I think an even better one is in equipping your employees to be an extension of your brand.

After all, your employees are your strongest advocates and biggest asset.

They already believe in you enough to invest 40 hours of their week into what you’re doing… not to mention they have quite a bit riding on the success of the company, themselves. The more you excite them and inspire them, the more willing they’ll be to carry the brand out into their lives.

They’ll be able to excitedly share when asked the inevitable, “What do you do?” at a wedding reception.  And they’ll probably be more aware of opportunities to hand out a business card.

See, people like to avoid sounding lame (shocking, I know). So if your employees are discouraged, bored, or indifferent toward the work they’re doing, they won’t talk about it.

When it’s spelled out, it seems like common sense, but a lot of times it’s easy to be so preoccupied with the consumer we forget to motivate our employees and remind them why their work matters – both to themselves and to others.

Equip them with everything they need to represent the brand well. Don’t know how best to do it? Ask them.

(Photo credit)

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