It’s very common as an Internal Communications person to be working in a small team. Perhaps there’s two of you or maybe, just like me, you’re a lone ranger; a one woman (or man) team.
Being a team of one for internal communications can have its benefits, however everyone needs a break. And for this “team,” the clock doesn’t stop, even if I’m away from my desk.
So it shouldn’t have surprised me that not long after booking my 3-week leave, our Group Reward Director, Debra (a frequent contributor here) contacted me to say that we’d be launching a brand new global benefit on the very same day that I’d be flying over 6,000 miles to start my holiday.
This was no ordinary benefit launch, it was something that was not only new, but had some complex communication challenges because of how it was designed. This new benefit, Wellbeing Choice, gave each employee up to £500, or local equivalent, to spend on their choice of wellbeing activity. This was special, this was a benefit to celebrate and it was going to take a lot of communication to show the variety and breadth of activities you could use your wellbeing allowance for.
But special as it was, I wasn’t going to be here, holiday booked.
The dates of the launch were fixed as they needed to fall in line with our payroll deadlines, and so I had to launch an entire benefit campaign from 6000 miles away. How, you might ask?
My best friend, automation!
Our internal communications platform, boom! is run on Reward Gateway’s SmartHub® platform, which can help you execute an entire benefits launch with the click of (a few) buttons. Needless, to say I took full advantage before going off to Peru. Here are the elements that helped me out and allowed me to go on a stress free holiday:
SmartScheduler is a feature of SmartHub® which allows you to plan, create and then schedule your content to go live on the date you want, even down to the minute you want it to hit your platform. Hallelujah! A year ago, this wouldn’t have been possible as we were using an intranet portal that meant content changes had to go live as they happened. Now, with this nifty tool available, I’d be able to create all the content I liked well ahead of the launch date and set it to publish whilst I was away.
A (human!) teaser campaign. We developed a concept which would deliver the information in a bitesize format. We created a teaser campaign on the SmartHub platform which you can see pictured above. The campaign consisted of a 10-day countdown. Each day we opened one of the “doors” to reveal information about the benefit and what employees could use their allowance for. We’d set up Wellbeing champions (something we encourage our clients to do for benefit programme launches to help spread the word), and asked them to submit selfies, photos and videos of their wellbeing activities. In doing so, we created the faces of our campaign. It was much more engaging for everyone to open a door and find a genuine, fun photo of their colleagues than seeing generic, stock photo content.
Creativity and humor. Scheduling the content meant I could have only one door open each day. We put funny memes and videos behind the doors yet to be opened to tell people to stop being nosey and come back later, and these were great as they really made people giggle.
The proper kind of follow-up. To get people to our online content we used one of my favourite comms tools - MailChimp. Each morning, we’d send out an email which had a picture of the door and a little bit of teaser text to get them to click through and take them onto our platform. This daily reminder delivered direct to each employee made it really easy for them to find the information they needed – no thought needed. MailChimp helped keep the communications consistent as well.
Breaking a content heavy project which was loaded with information and spreading it across a 5-10 day campaign makes it so much more manageable for people to take the information in. It builds suspense and excitement too, and without a doubt, your comms will become the talk of the workplace with people second guessing what’s coming next!
It didn’t matter that I was hanging out with alpaca’s in the Andes, my team still got the information they needed to learn about their new benefit. Keeping our communications really easy to access and simple to find made it a hit.
Check back to hear from Debra on how we continued to make the wellbeing benefit a success with continued engagement and finding even more “Champions.”
As Head of Global Engagement and Internal Communications, Catrin's main focus is to make Reward Gateway a better place to work. Using the Engagement Bridge™ model, she drives our mission, purpose and values while adding sparkle and creativity to our internal communications.