As Director of Advertising Sales here at LinkedIn, I spend most of my time talking to companies about their marketing and advertising strategies and how LinkedIn can help them achieve their business objectives. One topic that comes up often is the idea that the employees of a company are now a very visible part of that company’s overall brand, thanks to the proliferation of profiles on social networks like LinkedIn.
First, it’s important to note that a business’ brand is much more than just a logo and a tag line – it’s a promise of value, a promise made and delivered by the employees of that company. Historically, that promise was communicated to customers through advertising, packaging, PR, promotions, merchandising and in-store experiences, and the only contact with the company’s employees came from salespeople, customer service agents and communications managers. The rest of the company’s employees where rarely exposed to customers.