In a digitally connected world, corporate communication is one of the key factors that determine whether companies thrive or fail. It impacts employee productivity, innovation, brand awareness and more.
“The communications model changes every six to seven months. There’s media convergence, new technology, and new analytics. It affects how you need to communicate and how people get their information" says Tim Andree, executive chairman of Dentsu Aegis Network.
Before going into the reasons why it's so vital to your business success, let’s take a look at exactly what we mean by corporate communication.
What is Corporate Communication?
Corporate communication is the sum of an organization’s internal as well as external communication.
External communication includes the company’s messaging to its audience and the world at large. In an era of empowered employees, it also includes employee advocacy - employees sharing useful thought leadership content on social media through their personal accounts.
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Internal communication is about exchanges within the company. This includes the communication from the top management, bottom-up communication as well as communication between similar levels.
Your internal and external communications shouldn't be discrete elements.
In order to build a strong brand identity and optimize your organizational productivity, your internal and external communications should be aligned. In this article, we will see how the two work in sync.
Why Corporate Communication Is Vital for Your Business Success
Here are five key reasons why you need to build a strong corporate communication:
1. Brand Awareness
Earlier, companies used to rely primarily on advertising for promoting brand awareness.
However, the advertising industry has been shrinking over the past few years.
Millennials largely ignore ads since they don’t want to be sold to. Instead, they want to educate themselves and make informed buying decisions.
You have little chance of growing your brand awareness solely with advertising.
A far more effective way to attract your audience’s attention is with useful content that educates them. That’s where employee advocacy comes in.
External communication in the form of employee advocacy is one of the most effective ways to improve brand awareness.
Employee advocacy magnifies your company’s social media reach. If 500 of your employees share an article on LinkedIn, and each of them has a thousand connections, that’s an additional reach of half a million people for your brand!
Moreover, many people, especially millennials, trust individuals rather than companies. They are far more likely to pay attention to a tweet from one of your employees rather than from your official company handle.
Higher brand awareness translates into more leads and higher revenues. Therefore, corporate communication has a clear and direct impact on your company’s financial growth.
2. Boosting Employee Engagement
90% of executive leaders know for a fact that employee engagement is a vital element in business success.
The rationale is really quite simple: someone who enjoys their job is obviously going to work harder, perform better and stay longer. Additionally, they will inspire and encourage their colleagues to do the same.
However, as Gallup studies have consistently shown for years, only around 13% of employees are engaged.
Companies who have high rates of employee engagement are usually good at one thing - internal communication.
There are plenty of ways to use corporate communication to boost employee engagement.
Here are a few key ones:
Communicate Vision and Goals
Communicating your company’s top-level goals with the entire organization helps employees connect their everyday tasks to the bigger picture. This fosters a valuable sense of meaning in their jobs - which encourages them to contribute more.
Encourage Opinions and Dialogues
Encourage your employees to voice their ideas, opinions and concerns on an employee communication platform like Smarp. This leads to stimulating and rich conversations which spark productivity, collaboration and innovation. Most importantly, employees feel heard.
Boost Employee Advocacy
Encourage people to build their personal brands on social media by sharing the company’s thought leadership content, appearing on podcasts and speaking at events.
Related: Your Employees Are Your Most Valuable Marketing Asset
When you give your employees such opportunities, they feel more involved with the company and are ready to contribute more to your business success.
3. Sparking Innovation
Innovation isn’t really a buzzword anymore. Companies that don’t innovate in the 21st century either go out of business or always struggle to make profits.
But how can you create a culture of innovation in your company?
Internal communication can spark innovation in several ways, such as:
Before employees can innovate, they need to be informed about what’s both internal company updates and external industry dynamics and economic developments.
Using an employee communications platform such as Smarp allows you to encourage employees to share articles and updates about your industry, competitors and the economy with their colleagues. Similarly, they can share internal updates about customer challenges, successes and so on.
This knowledge will help employees come up with ideas and initiatives that truly reflect the needs of customers and the market.
Innovation never happens solely within the confines of a lab. Truly profitable ideas and execution require inputs from across departments like tech, support, marketing and sales.
Source: Robert Half
When employees have the means to communicate with people across departments effortlessly, they will be able to easily collaborate to discuss and refine innovation initiatives that become genuinely profitable.
4. Improving Employee Productivity
Productivity is all about getting more done in less time. The more productive your people are, the higher your revenue generated/employee and the lower the cost/employee.
Better corporate communication improves employee productivity in the following ways:
Many employees waste tons of time searching for the required information to execute specific tasks. This isn’t just the case with new employees. Anyone who’s trying to execute a process they are unfamiliar with would face this issue.
However, an employee communications platform largely eliminates this problem.
People can just ask their colleagues for help over the platform - in specific departmental/ topic-based ‘channels.’
Anyone who has experienced that situation before will be able to help out by providing an immediate solution.
Internal communication encourages the practice of sharing knowledge and experiences.
For example, a support or sales team member can share their unique experience with a customer. Everyone else can use that knowledge to help other customers more successfully in the future.
Communication leads to better collaboration. And when people collaborate more efficiently, they get more done in less time with less friction.
5. Attracting Top Talent
Companies are only as successful as the people who work there! But attracting top talent is an expensive and time-consuming process.
Corporate communication can help you attract better talent and do it faster and less expensively. Here’s how:
Referrals from Engaged Employees
One of the best ways to hire excellent talent is through employee referrals.
Engaged employees are far more likely to actively encourage their friends and family members to apply.
And as I explained earlier, good internal communication always leads to better employee engagement.
If you have an employee advocacy program in place, your existing employees will be able to talk about open positions on their social networks.
Instead of spending thousands of dollars on job ads, you can acquire suitable candidates through corporate communication on social media.
Showcasing your company culture
Your employees can also use social media to showcase your company culture.
For example, your employees can share videos of team building events, birthday celebrations, posts about progressive HR policies, CSR (corporate social responsibility) initiatives and much more.
Moreover, when these posts come from employees across different teams rather than from HR, they are far more credible for showcasing how your company is a great place to work.
Corporate communication is no longer restricted to your media relations team. Today, all your staff - from your executive management to your support team members can have an active role in it. Corporate communication enables your entire workforce to make a unified and massive contribution to your business success.
Download our free eBook "How to Boost Employee Engagement with Communication Tools" where we share actionable tips to boost employee engagement at your workplace!