It's More Than a Tool; It's a Brand
It might seem like a waste of time and resources to invest in a marketing plan around an internal initiative, but I can tell you from what I've seen with our clients, it is critical to have a promotional plan in place once you’re ready to start introducing your staff to your social intranet. Imagine if you took the time to develop a sleek UI and in-depth training program, but no one showed up? Opportunity missed.
Treat your social intranet like a new product launch. Start by coming up with a name for your community. It should be something that ties your community vision and mission together with your company culture and/or your existing branding. For example, our social intranet at JCS is called “The Bridge” because of our company tagline – “Your bridge to social business.” Develop a logo and creative theme you can use within the community design itself and throughout your branded communication assets such as email updates, presentation slides, posters, etc.
Next, develop your pre- and post-launch communication schedule across various channels – email newsletters, webinars, videos, print, and even your existing company intranet if you have one. Your pre-launch messaging should build awareness of the new platform and drive people to register for training opportunities. Your post-launch messaging should highlight what’s happening in the community so far to generate more interest and continue to encourage people to register for training. Highlight your “wins” to help sustain and enhance the credibility of the change that is taking place.
And don’t forget about your advocates I mentioned the Phase 1 - UI development stage. Think of them as brand ambassadors helping to spread the word about the benefits your community has to offer. Ask them to mention your newly launched network during their team meetings and have them suggest ways they can use it to work better within their teams. Give them swag to hand out or signs to post in their cubicles – whatever creative and effective tactics you can think of. Reward your power users by featuring them on the front page of the site; show how their efforts have resulted in lower costs, higher revenue and improved customer service. Remember, you can’t do this alone, so engage people who want to participate and empower them to help you reach your goal.
What tactics have you used to drive adoption of a social intranet? What worked? What didn’t?