“Company culture” has become a bit of a buzz phrase in the last few years. Silicon Valley powerhouses have famously prioritized their internal culture by providing non-traditional benefits like paternity leave and pet insurance. Offices all over the country are installing foosball and pool tables. Employee swag has become an artform, with items like branded gumball machines and fish tanks. This is an extreme shift from the good ole’ days when all you expected from your employer was a paycheck and a holiday ham.

Don’t get me wrong, I love a good ham as much as the next girl, but dare I say it’s no gravy. Gravy sucks me in and makes me feel warm and fuzzy. Gravy makes me go back for seconds. Gravy completes the meal. And that’s exactly what these companies are getting at. They aren’t trying to be trendy and cutting edge, they’ve tapped into something special. A magical marketing golden ticket: the indelible influence of culture on brands.

Every non-Nebraskan’s favorite billionaire, Jeff Bezos, said, “Your brand is what people say about you when you’re not in the room.” And he’s right. Perception IS reality. This means that when your employees are sitting around their family tables eating the Easter ham and are asked “how’s work going”, their reply is important. It reflects your brand.

It’s no secret that engaged employees are more productive and successful in their jobs, which is what every business owner wants. When they’re engaged in the culture as well, they spread their brand love like sunshine. With an engaged culture, your brand can truly utilize all its “assets”, not just a logo and font. This tells a much more distinct, authentic and powerful story. The story of your team, your home away from home, your mission, your values, your voice. Your company rallying cry.

I’m not saying foosball tables are going to single-handedly enhance your culture. Your core values and your people are at the heart of it all, so shape your internal communications around those. Post the values on your walls and at employees’ desks. Talk about them at company meetings and share what they mean to you. Celebrate employee milestones and successes. Really drive home what unites you all and brings you to the same place day after day. I’ve seen companies who have integrated values so well that it has created a ride or die mentality that transcends the 8-5 grind –employees who will go to bat for one another AND their employer.

So, I encourage you to consider culture with the importance that is due. Integrate it into your marketing through emails, newsletters, events, blogs, social media. Show your customers how you are unique. Tell your story. I assure you that the good work you are doing on the inside will ultimately make some really tasty marketing gravy.

Does your brand connect with your values and culture? If not, schedule a chat with one of our CMOs to get it on track! Contact Us Today!

About the Author:

Suzie is an accomplished Marketing professional with 12 years of broad exposure developing and leading strategic marketing efforts in support of company goals and brand growth.

Whether at a small business or a Fortune 500 company, Suzie is known for helping local and national organizations tell their stories in ways that generate results. She creates value through a disciplined strategic planning process that is built upon communication and accountability.

Prior to joining yorCMO, Suzie worked with a variety of industries including real estate, retail, higher education, pharmaceuticals and technology. She is a hands-on marketing executive who is skilled in positioning, analytics, messaging, branding, targeting and digital marketing. Suzie also brings the added advantage of a strong creative background including design, writing and art direction.

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