What comes to mind when you think of internal marketing for a change project?

It may be a simple answer for you, or something that doesn’t change much from customer to customer or project to project. But should it? What is stopping you from adapting your marketing strategies to each individual project and different groups of users?

These aren’t the memes you’re looking for…

It can be easy to market to groups you know. Let’s say you work in IT. Working on creating a marketing plan for your colleagues seems easy: just hang a poster with a meme above the coffee maker referencing the upcoming change and you’re done!

While that might be effective for some projects, and it even might be enough to market a change to the IT team, we can all agree it probably will not be effective for all of your projects and definitely won’t work for all end users.

Oftentimes you’ll be in charge of marketing a change to your entire company. Your “customers” in this case are not just the IT team, and one-size won’t fit all when it comes to marketing.

You might be throwing your hands up in frustration at this point. Your day is already filled with creating communications and trainings. And now adding marketing to that is going to be difficult as well? Before you give up and hang that meme throughout your entire office, reach back into your memory and recall some of our previous blog topics. You probably have already identified User Groups. And you’ve spent time building your “Circle of Trust”. Let’s leverage both here to get a leg up on our marketing strategy.

User Groups

User groups might seem like an odd place to start your marketing strategy, but bear with me. Your user groups can often give you a lens on what might be the most effective marketing tool in your tool bag.

  • Do you have a large sales group who only access their email on their mobile devices? Make sure any posters you hang highlight mobile-friendly features!
  • Do you have a large subset of manufacturing users who rarely (if ever) check emails? Find a way to integrate marketing into digital displays in their break rooms (see more here).
  • What about hourly customer service workers who work irregular shifts? Make sure their desks have proper desk-drops that highlight when the change is happening and what they need to do to prepare.

All of this sounds much easier once you have those user groups identified, right?

Circles of Trust

If you haven’t read our post on Circles of Trust, start working now to cultivate those relationships. If you’ve already read it, now may be the time to engage their assistance!

Maybe you’ve spent the past 6 months attending Toastmasters with the marketing team, and you even brought donuts for the bi-weekly meetings. Now is the time to ask for their help to create posters!

You joined the sales bowling league even though you don’t think bowling shoes look good on you? Ask those sales reps for their help in talking about the change in their regional team meetings!

You’ve been eating lunch with the HR team even though none of them are interested in your Bitcoin portfolio? That’s okay, because they are going to help you make sure you are following the guidelines for hanging posters across the entire campus.

Without those relationships, you may not have known where to start.

Wrapping up

Every project will look different, and every company will have different marketing “toolkits” at the ready. Whether it’s instant message blasts to all employees, posters in the bathrooms, a CEO vlog series, or anything else, the key for you is to find the most effective way to reach the biggest audience before the change occurs.

Feel free to let us know in the comments below what has worked in the past, or even what you’ll try in the future!