Friday, 8 June 2018

The company with nothing to hide

At the Engage for Success conference this Spring, I saw a powerful presentation by the Chairman and CEO of Absolut Vodka, Anna Malmhake. She told a story that was deceptively simple and extremely impressive.

Like many other institutions, in different countries and sectors, Absolut wanted to ensure their brand values were shared and followed by colleagues and partners around their world. In their case, they wanted clear and consistent messages in which they could engage teams and markets in the wider Pernod Ricard family.

After distilling five campaign beliefs they want to weave though all their brand marketing activity, worldwide, they summed their mantra up as “the vodka with nothing to hide”. The thinking being: we are a pure vodka and nothing detracts from our purpose or our product.

The Absolut team then looked inwardly and examined how this mantra could be brought to life for current and prospective recruits. The internal perspective being: we are an open company that is fair, straightforward and engaging for everyone.

But how to bring this life for people, so they can see the company means what it says?

Simple. Produce a film to communicate the message. Using employees.

Naked employees.

Colleagues from across the company’s single production site in Sweden appear, au naturel, in an induction film that communicates and celebrates what is special about the company and its culture. It is a bold concept, wonderfully expressed, in a really engaging film. Click here to see it on YouTube (if you’re over 18!). It has attracted nearly two million viewers.

I love the idea and its expression because it is simple yet bold, aligned with the values of the brand. It’s also interesting that they looked at what they were trying to say to consumers and realised they could do more with this concept from an employer branding perspective.

Fabulous stuff.

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