What internal comms professionals can learn from marketers

By Aimee Happ
September 21, 2021
3 min read
Computer monitor displaying "digital marketing"

When most of us think of marketing, the first thing that probably comes to mind is communicating and selling to clients, customers, and your target market. But as the Harvard Business Review expertly puts it, your employees—the ones who can make your business come alive for your customers—are the market you should be targeting as an internal comms professional. Here’s are three ways you can strengthen your internal communications by thinking like a marketer.

1. Construct internal “employee profiles”

You’re probably familiar with the idea of a customer profile, one that outlines what your ideal target customer looks like. They typically include details like a customer’s buying habits, challenges, goals, demographics, and more. Why not apply a similar approach to better understand and reach your employees? 

Consumer profiling is a time-tested method of gathering the insights needed to understand, segment, and truly connect with your target audience. Tying this concept back to internal comms, constructing internal “employee profiles” is also a great way to improve the employee experience overall. What’s more relevant to internal communications than that? 

To think like a marketer, create separate employee profiles for your various teams. Think of it like creating your internal audience, then going a step further! Include human-focused details like their hobbies, reading/tech consumption habits, and goals, to name a few. These are valuable insights into how each of your teams communicates and will they will be useful for your own planning purposes.

Related reading: segment your audience with internal communications

2. Create better content 

As the saying goes, “content is king”. Marketing and social media experts know that crafting high-quality, high-value content is key to truly connecting with your audience. The same is true for the content you share with your employees. 

From your email newsletters and internal messages to your intranet communications, ensure that every piece of content sent to your teams educates, entertains, or inspires them in some way. 

So beyond the usual concise copy, what does “value-driven” marketing content look like from an internal communications perspective? For starters, create personalized content! According to recent Epsilon research, 80% of consumers are more likely to do business with a company if it offers a personalized experience. 

Your employees are bombarded with new info daily, and they will prefer to see content that is valuable and relevant to them. Ensure your content speaks directly to the needs and interests of your target audience, and solves their challenges. 

Woman working on internal comms message on a laptop

Related reading: 5 reasons you need a content calendar

3. Incorporate visuals

According to Hubspot, visuals help increase people’s willingness to read content by 80%. Ask a social media expert and they’ll definitely corroborate this statistic! Not only does incorporating better visuals with your content make it more engaging, but images are also far more effective at conveying your messages and making them memorable. Strong visuals can include bold, colourful graphics and images, videos, or even interactive elements and engaging branding. 

Note: not all images need to be “Instagram worthy”; even a few subtle additions can work wonders for engagement. For example, include corresponding icons next to your top navigation headers as a way to distinguish which header leads where, create unique and engaging graphics announcing internal events and meetings using Canva, or include video messages in your internal newsletters.

Learn more about how to improve your internal comms

There you have it! Internal communications and marketing are two crucial concepts that work seamlessly together. Whether you want to create stronger content or better understand your internal “customers”, our intranet software with a multi-channel messaging feature can help you get there. Book a demo today!

By Aimee Happ

Aimee Happ is proud to lead the marketing team at IC and enjoys working with the dynamic and diverse team that surrounds her. She is inspired on a daily basis by the company's mission of empowering internal communicators. Aimee holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Calgary and loves to travel.