Internal Branding Communications: Learn the Brand. Live the Brand. Be the Brand.
Strategies to develop inspired and effective internal brand advocates for your health system
In simple terms, a huge part of patient satisfaction and loyalty resides in the individual and cumulative efforts of the internal staff to deliver the brand promise or messages in a very personal way. So, it is vital to communicate about brand management internally to ensure that:
- Staff clearly understands the brand, its messages, pillars and guidelines. This will make them proud and empowered to deliver on the brand promise with others.
- Patients and families can properly experience, connect and appreciate what the message means to them.
Like any internal communications, we can employ change management strategies to activate new brand communications internally. It follows the change process of inspiring with education and knowledge, guiding on-brand actions, and reinforcing positive brand behaviors through operational incentives. We distill this simply into:
- Learn the Brand
- Live the Brand
- Be the Brand
For the highest degree of permanent change, it is key that all three components of the internal communication process work together. Individually, each addresses a different aspect of change and collectively plays a significant role in providing the template for a successful internal outcome:
Learn the Brand: Engage and Inspire
- Effectively communicate the positioning and the importance of the brand/messaging
- Provide ready access to information
- Inspire pride, hope and commitment
- Create unity and belonging
Live the Brand: Align Behaviors
- Create champions and role models from the top down
- CEOs and leadership should lead the charge
- Connect the brand to roles and responsibilities
- Empower employees to act differently, providing tools to aid on-brand decisions
Be the Brand: Transform Experience
- Reinforcement to sustain change
- Align operations and systems to better deliver brand promise
- Provide incentives and rewards
- Plan for resistance and backsliding
There should be no shortcuts when it comes to developing internal brand stewards; rather the opposite is true. Careful planning and diligence need to be taken to ensure the brand lives and breathes within the walls of your healthcare facility among all the staff. That’s the proven way to truly reap dividends in terms of delivering the brand promise to patients and their families.