New Survey Searches for Brandful Companies

Recently I interviewed some job seekers. Some were just starting out in their careers and some were mid-career. My key question: “Have you ever thought about working at your favorite brand?” Most of the respondents hesitated at first. They gave me the head-tilt, with that look of “Hmm, I’ve never really thought of it that way.” Most folks start out with their skills and interests in a specific job or career, and yes, that’s good. But sometimes it’s advantageous to put on a different pair of glasses and check out a fresh perspective.  You never know what added value you can bring an organization looking to build a workforce of brand ambassadors. Your voice counts more than ever towards the power of the brand.

But, how can you find organizations that really want you to be involved in the brand? We’re trying to provide some solutions and we’re almost there. This summer, we will be publishing our first list of top brandful companies, and no, it’s not a popularity contest. There are real metrics providing scores and rankings, based on advanced social media analytics. We are looking at those brands that have the most powerful and genuine employee and customer advocates. The methodology allows us to score any organization, but here’s where you come in:

You can have a say in who gets a brandful score. Complete the Brandful Consumer Survey and help determine who gets on the list. For our launch, we are limiting companies to a minimum of 1,000 employees, however post-launch we will be expanding to smaller companies and to other entities such as cities, government agencies and more. Please share this link and stay tuned for the results!

While you’re here, please look around the site, read my book (The Brandful Workforce: How Employees Can Make, Not Break Your Brand) and my other posts. Brandful is a win-win for employers and employees. Stay connected and stay brandful.

Launching Top Brandful Companies

Future Brand Winners Are Brandful

Top Brandful Companies Coming Summer 2015

Leaders work long and hard to build winning brands. The challenge is to constantly and meaningfully engage customers and employees as their interests change quickly. Is your corporate success going to last? Some of the top brands of today may not be around tomorrow. But brandful brands just might be.

Since launching the Brandful Workforce – a roadmap for getting employees behind the brand, not against it – we began to see that brandful also has incredible value for others. Not just employees, but customers, vendors, contractors, investors and others can get actively behind the brand. And that’s what a brandful company is all about. The concept is simple: Every organization wants folks to love and promote what they’re all about.  If you agree with that, then you agree that every organization should be brandful.

Some companies that have been named in focus groups as brandful include: Apple, Google, Costco, Tesla, Patagonia, Zappos and smaller brands like the optical company, Warby Parker or Union Square Hospital Group (founders of Union Square Café and Shake Shack, which just had a successful IPO.). But are they really brandful? What value does this bring? Who else could be added to this list? Look out for our upcoming social media research that is reviewing hundreds of brands to score and rank them according to the level of overall brand advocacy. We will be reporting the top scores and reporting what makes these companies brandful and how the measures can introduce unique insights into current and future business success.

Some believe that companies that make the Top Brandful Companies list may be the same names on other lists. But that won’t be the case. The differentiator here is that brandful companies are not just about engaging the customer or employee, but they involve everyone connecting meaningfully with the brand. This is not only about being a top place to work, or having the best customer service or most engaged audience – it’s a combination of all of it. When a company is brandful- there is a contagious passion for what the company offers and what the company stands for. Brandful companies have both employee and customer brand fans actively spreading positive messages.

Yes, it’s a high hurdle, but hey- it’s 2015. It means you have to get everything right. Not just your external branding, advertising positioning, but your internal operations, leadership and culture. It’s a holistic approach that is timely because our millennial generation is already onboard with it. They want more transparency, authenticity and meaning as both consumers and employees. Brandful companies provide that. They also drive real content. don’t have to make up the advertising stories, when you can use the real ones. When I worked in the airline industry, we used to joke that television drama was nothing compared to real life.

Launching Top Brandful Companies

Top Brandful Companies will be live this summer. After the launch, our proprietary tool can be used to score almost any kind of organization at any point in time.  The insights from the results can help identify barriers as well as actions to becoming brandful.

Want to know if your company is brandful? Read more.

Top Brandful Organizations in 2013

Welcome to my final blog post for 2013. The following companies make the list of of top brandful organizations this year: Trader Joe’s, Netflix, Zappos, Starbucks, IBM, L’Occitane, Patagonia, Nick’s Pizza & Pub, Viking Cruises, Ikea, The Container Store, Wegmans, Rackspace, and Tesla. What sets these companies apart from others? It’s quite simple: the employees genuinely believe in the products and services they help deliver… so much so that they actually help promote them, voluntarily. Employees at these organizations are critical to current and future success of the business.

While many experts are now posting their recommendations for 2014, I believe one of the most strategic actions any company can make in the new year will be to connect employees meaningfully and authentically with the brand. For example, at Trader Joe’s, some of the employees spend most of their paychecks on purchasing groceries in the store. And most employees there can tell you their favorite products, if you ask.  Or employees at Rackspace may spend more time than necessary online interacting with each other and customers about optimizing the services they provide because they are just that passionate about them.  Brandful employees help to evolve the success of the business.

The organizations mentioned above do not necessarily depend on employee engagement programs or internal marketing campaigns or even employer branding initiatives, to create a brandful workforce. They rely primarily on the strength of their products and services and how they run their business from a people perspective. These are the principles of the brandful approach.

In 2014, more organizations will understand the potential of the workforce. And it will be great timing as we will embark on a project to design a measurement tool so organizations can understand the level at which their employees are truly behind the products and services they deliver every day. Once they receive their results, they can take necessary action to move the needle on building a more brandful workforce. Please stay tuned. In the meantime, enjoy the last few days of the year!

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