In my work I am asked to help non-profits strategically analyze and improve their marketing across all mediums. After being hired, it’s inevitable that people within the organization will ask why they have to spend money and time on branding when let’s face it, they have so little of either.
Some staff will find the term alien, even off-putting, so make sure that all staff understands that a brand is not just a logo or a tagline or a mission statement. It is the overall impressions, good or bad that your organization leaves behind, from the materials you send out, to your website being current to the person who answers the phone.
So what are some ways to make everyone on the boat row in the same direction? In my opinion the key is in involving all levels of the staff. It may be a focus group, a task force or asking for input on current perceptions. We all want to be listened too, taken seriously and have our opinions valued. Hiring an outside firm can help create a non-judgmental atmosphere and a promise of no repercussions from upper management. The best cheerleading begins from within an organization and then naturally emanates to the people in the stands.
Now if only we can find a better word than branding, any suggestions out there?