Too often we see senior organizations shell out big bucks for external marketing only to see it produce lackluster results due to what happens inside the community. High employee turnover, staff burnout and disengaged team members can make the best of marketing strategies fall completely flat.
The remedy: recruitment and internal marketing.
The team is the treasure chest of the organization. When they love their work, it shows throughout the organization. They have the power to have an immensely positive impact on the residents/clients and on the community at large. They become brand ambassadors, singing the organization’s praises to everyone around them. They welcome new resident/client leads in a genuine, warm and truly inviting way.
How to tap this lost gold?
First, find the right people for the team. In her book Why Can’t I Hire Good People?: Lessons on How to Hire Better, Beth Smith lays out a 7-step process for doing just that. The first three steps are rooted in great marketing:
- Create an ideal candidate description
- Develop the job description
- Write the job ad
The first step is all about documenting who will best fulfill a particular role. Most organizations stop short by documenting only skills. Take it further… What personality traits does this person have? What dreams and desires motivate this person? What does this person have in common with the company culture?
The second step is another area where most senior organizations falter. With such high turnover in the industry, it seems easier to churn out a quick list of duties and responsibilities and slap it onto an online job board. Whatever is put into the process is what will be produced from the process, so it’s important to take the time to write the right job description. Certainly, take the time to list precisely what the candidate will do in the position.
The third step is where the marketing magic happens. Place at the top a few lines about the ideal candidate. Add a brief description of why people love to work for this organization. Include 3 key measures for success to articulate how the right candidate can grow in the position.
Now, people with the skills and the passion will apply. We have even heard candidates say things like, “I read the job ad and it sounds exactly like me!” They are excited about the workplace and the fulfillment of their life goals, not just the duties and responsibilities they will undertake. And we’d all rather hire someone who is excited and passionate than the antithesis, right?
Once you have all the right people in the right seats on the bus, as Jim Collins writes in Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap and Others Don’t, it will take more marketing magic to keep them there. Fortune 500 companies invest a healthy portion of their annual marketing budgets on marketing to the internal team, or internal marketing. Regular and strategic communications to the team about vision, goals, benchmarks and corresponding rewards translate into higher engagement and measureable change. These communications might take the form of motivational email campaigns, company retreats, team building events and referral bonuses for the team. To structure a simple internal marketing strategy:
- Articulate the organization’s vision and goals in a clear, concise way.
- Find out what motivates employees and what types of media they consume with a simple survey.
- Consistently communicate the vision and goals over the media that most resonates with employees.
- Reward employee achievements as often and as publicly as possible.
Uncover the lost gold that is recruitment and internal marketing, and all marketing will become more profitable.