One message for better management, one thought that gives meaning to it all.
We have already hinted on our blog at the characteristics of a good investor relations portal. However, looking at the realities, on the background of which brands are built, we have to admit that investor relations are in many cases only a fragment of a greater whole. They are one of the branches of an entire tree – a corporate portal. Let us thus take a broader look at how corporate communication - particular parts of which will be reflected in the corporate website - should look like.
Usually, a corporation with its "umbrella brand" does not stick its neck out; it stands in the back line, only presenting its own product brands known to mass recipients on the front. So can it be (or even should it be) sexy? Should the brand, even at this level, allow interaction with the users within its target groups? The answer is obviously yes, since such a brand has much more to offer and… to sell. Such products include, among others, the mission and vision guiding the company's operations, and the values shared by all employees, motivating them to achieve the objective.
The identity of the umbrella brand is created on the basis of this message. It is the basis for almost all aspects of operation, such as: periodical presentation of results, recruitment of employees or CSR actions. Lack of consistency of the latter with the main creation line of the brand causes dissonance in its reception and, as a result, lack of credibility. So what to do in order to ensure that the base message about the objectives set in the company is interpreted as intended by all concerned target groups? Let's go back to the corporate website.
Subpages "About_us" or "Mission" are on as much as 90 % of websites, however, if we take into account the content of those subpages, it turns out that each company is guided by care for the environment, quality of the offered products and innovative services utilising the best available technologies, as well as ambitious goals aimed at continuous development of the company. It wouldn't be a great injustice to shorten this sentence to a quote: There's everything and nothing.
How about trying to give specific numbers or the objectives that the company has surely already set out during secret meetings of the management board? For instance, XYZ company will increase production of vehicles until 2020 up to 3.5 million pieces per year thanks to construction of 2 additional factories, employment of 2500 new employees and growth in efficiency from the current 15 to 20 % as a result of regular trainings and raising staff qualifications.
The objective described in such a way, expressed in a simple and understandable language, without pompous catchwords and expressions, is a message that gives a clear signal about the company's situation and the directions that the company wants to follow, and which may be directed both outside (stock analysts, economic journalists) and inside (employees and their families, investors). It builds the company's credibility, thanks to which the recipients are sure that it is authentic in what it does, and the set objectives can be verified. A question arises of whether it is fear of saying "check" that causes general messages formulated by companies to be so common. However, each company focused on dynamic expansion and overcoming consecutive stages of development has defined goals, both short- and long-term. By focusing on openness, reliability and credibility in communication, companies can gain more.
It is also worth considering strengthening of the message prepared in advance in the form of an ordinary text. This can be done using graphic form to distinguish the most important numbers or expressions, in the form of which we describe our goals. Static or animated infographics are perfectly suitable for this purpose, as they are much easier to digest and more pleasing to watch. A short video footage is also a fantastic tool for promotion of the website and the company itself through other channels, e.g. social media.
Knowing how the main message being the basis for communication of an umbrella company should look like, we will be able to proceed to subsequent suggestions of specific solutions, thanks to which we will actively create the image of our brand on the web. Soon, you will find those suggestions in subsequent articles on our blog!