In devising your corporate communications strategy who would you say is your most important audience? Many would probably point to their customers, those who pay for your goods or services, either by handing over money or through taxation. Some, possibly a smaller number, would mention their staff. Our latest campaign, involving video, blogs and posters, has focused on this latter group, celebrating the brand ambassadors who have the biggest potential to forge an organisational reputation.

This campaign has taken us down the M11 where heading southerly the only way is Essex, a land renowned for fake tans, hair extensions and love triangles. However, we found none of this, instead discovering a charming county, with quaint countryside, the friendliest residents and some great stories. Our recent visits to Brentwood and beyond have shattered any television stereotypes and soundbites, much as our work with Essex County Council is hopefully transforming how the local authority staff think about their work and their knowledge of the council’s ‘operating styles’. These operating styles are, in effect, the new values of the organisation, promoting such working behaviours as ‘collaborative, innovative and outcomes-led’.

The local authority wanted to deliver an employee campaign running over six months which described how employees should work or behave in order for the organisation to successfully change, transform and meet its future ambitions. The campaign had to raise awareness of the operating styles, bring them to life through tangible examples and celebrate employees who are working in these ways. Over four days in Essex, from Chelmsford to Colchester, we interviewed some fascinating characters including a park ranger, librarian, dementia champion, call centre manager, inward investment manager and an IT ‘super hero’. From these wide-ranging interviews we have produced digital and print content that the council can use in a range of internal communications channels to promote the operating styles and gain their further adoption across County Hall and council-run centres in the towns and villages of Essex. The campaign launched towards the end of last year and has attracted high levels of interest among employees wishing to find out more about the working practices of their colleagues.

The campaign will run until the spring and we will then work with the council to gather evaluative data about its impact. Early indications are positive but we will wait until the last video has gone live, with accompanying blog write-up and marketing material, to make the final judgement on the success of the campaign. We are confident the campaign is resonating well at this stage. The target audience is clear and the message has been kept simple and sharp. Essex County Council is one of the largest county councils in the country and employs approximately 43,000 staff in a range of jobs. If we assume that each member of staff has 20 acquaintances such as neighbours and friends, then the campaign could potentially affect the perception of 860,000 people – more than half of the county’s population. In this way, the value of an internal employee engagement campaign has the potential to be more cost effective than a campaign targeted at customers. Internal communications research for many years has shown that employees like to identify with a successful organisations and good internal communications is critical to this. Industry award events always tend to concentrate on external communications activities but developing employees as positive role model spokespeople for an organisation is vital and should be recognised as equally important.

We were delighted to work with Essex County Council on this important campaign that has the potential to reinforce the continued success of this forward-thinking local authority and maintain its position among the leading councils in the country. The council knows the value of good employee communications – you only need to see their trophy cabinet to appreciate that – and this campaign has built on its reputation as a good organisation to work for. They also know that there is a fifth ‘p’ in the marketing mix beyond product, price, promotion and place. The fifth ‘p’ is people – and the people of Essex County Council are benefiting from a visionary council whose latest campaign has vision and values in every video.

If your organisation, in the public or private sector, needs to tune in to its staff more and effectively spread a vision and values, then please get in This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. We can tell you more about our approach in Essex and in other areas and work up a bespoke campaign for you.

Back to blog  ❯

Receive our monthly bulletin

Invalid Input

That doesn't seem to be an email address!


Like the sound of what we do?

Get in Touch with us about your next project

Icon Clock  We do what we say we will do, when we say we will do it by.

Icon Money  It costs what we said it would cost.

Icon Pencil  We will make you look good.

Icon SpeechBubble  We will get to know you and your brand and how to reach your clients

Icon Smiley  We are in it with you for the long haul, through the good times and the bad.

Give us a call on
0115 950 9394

or email