A few years ago a certain tool used for effective communications interested me. I wrote to the organisation and we fixed a meeting. An articulate, well-dressed lady turned up and handed me her card. It said she was an ‘Evangelist’, of the brand she was working for. At that time, much ado was on anyway about creative designations on social media, ‘Chief Happiness Officer’, ‘Chief Engagement Officer’, even Chief Tweeter, so I brushed this aside as a gimmick.
As we progressed in our conversation, I started to take her designation a bit more seriously. No doubt, she was in sales. However, she was not just selling, she was evangelsing her brand, not just preaching but seeking to convert. Not just spelling out the features of the product, but making you feel like it is the most important tool in business. All the while using authentic voice over usual sales jargon.
While I made a practical, rational decision on the tool, the lady did a great job! Of being an evangelist of her brand. At the end of it, she came across as someone who genuinely loves working where she did, believed in the product and was passionate about her job. One amazing, happy, satisfied, passionate employees can do wonders for the brand and for themselves too.
Do you have brand evangelists at work? Here’s how to spot, ignite and keep them!
Survey Social media/ intranet and look out for the following:
They share work experiences
Look around social media, or if you have a social intranet, for these engaged lot. Evangelists are the ones who write about their experiences in the workplace – from the small updates like pictures with colleagues to posts related to engagement events, trainings they attend, travelling for work to working with international teams. Through their posts they share the flavor of the organisation in their own style which makes it authentic for the readers.
They like/share organisation posts/job openings
Evangelists are usually the first ones to like/share posts/job openings from the organisation. The organisation handle is on top of their ‘follow’ list. Notice the ones who always do this? Follow them.
They showcase their work on social media
They are usually proud of what they do and if they do it well they tend to showcase it on social media/ intranet. This in turn amplifies the brand experience for a reader.
They share work related milestones
When they complete a milestone – tenure at work or a particular training, project, they are proud to share it on social media.
They celebrate recognition
When they receive recognition, in the form of an award or a reward, they celebrate it with their friends and family on social media, always saying something about their experiences at work.
Develop Brand Evangelists
There are some potential Brand Evangelists, they are out there but shy away from sharing their experiences with the brand/ organisation. They are generally the engaged audience and participate in all org-wide events. They share compliments quietly on emails/ office chat tools. Possible they are introverts or not on social media.
Good thing about social media is that even introverts can engage. With a little encouragement and sometimes training on social media/ intranet, they start to share. They already love the brand experience, the encouragement is just for them to share it.
Once identified, it is a great idea to make them part of engagement committees for various organisational initiatives – especially culture and employee engagement. They share a love for the brand, they enjoy working in the organisation and they are ready to share their experiences. Being part of these committees will only empower them to share brand stories with all altruism. To be honest, I am still not game for the fancy titles, but as a role, it is a great one to have.
They say, nothing is as contagious as enthusiasm. This quality is the hallmark of a Brand Evangelist. And one more saying goes, nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm.