Branding has always been integral to marketing and we often talk about the importance of “tone of voice”, being “on brand” and “brand personality”. If you are not from a marketing background but are part of the intranet project team and wondering what on earth is meant by the need to “brand your intranet”, I thought it would be useful to provide some insight in this latest blog.
What is a brand?
I always think of a brand as a character, defined by looks, personality and voice. Translate this to your intranet a brand encompasses how your intranet looks, its name, its qualities and intranet content. Being “on brand” is the art of bringing all of these components together and producing one strong, consistent intranet character (or brand). If one element is out of sync it can send conflicting messages to your end users.
Why do you need an intranet brand?
A strong intranet brand can help with user adoption and positively influence your end users experience. Given, your intranet is going to be the first thing they see when they login every day, it’s a great way to convey exactly what your intranet is all about.
It’s worth noting that your intranet brand doesn’t always need to be a carbon copy of your corporate brand. It should be in line with your organisations core brand values but can also have its own character as your intranet has a different purpose.
Your marketing team will be able to advise and support you with this. You might have an external agency that you use for design and branding, or your chosen intranet software supplier might also have design experts that could help.
What does an intranet brand consist of?
A brand can broadly be described as consisting of:
- Intranet Name: What you call your intranet is key to creating your intranet brand. Your name should be memorable, short and approachable and be considerate of your wider corporate brand. Sound complicated?! It doesn’t need to be and many organisations run company competitions to name their intranet and use it as a way of getting everyone involved. To help, you can download our Intranet Naming Guide.
- Content: When you come to thinking about content and writing your guidelines for colleagues to reference you need to make sure that words, imagery and video also convey the brand in the way you want it to. If you are an organisation with a plethora of acronyms it’s making sure they are used in a consistent way. If you are a very traditional organisation, adopting a very modern of the moment copy and image style might conflict with the wider corporate brand values.
- Colours: When it comes to choosing colours for your intranet brand, I would always default to a design expert. The colours you choose can influence how colleagues perceive your brand and there is a whole science behind colour selection. It is important though that you think about how you will use colour throughout your intranet. Our in-house design expert’s blog expands upon this.
- Page Design: Just like colour there is a whole user experience science behind page design which I won’t cover now but in terms of creating your intranet brand, you need to ensure that your page layouts are consistent and reflect your brand.
How to implement your brand?
Bringing all of these elements together is exciting. It’s creating a new brand for your organisation that will become integral to every employees day. As we’ve talked about before your intranet launch is a great place to launch your new brand and create a buzz throughout your organisation. You might find our Intranet Management Guide useful.