First and foremost, what is “onboarding”?
The action or process of integrating a new employee into an organisation
We frequently see great examples of onboarding, desks laid out in a welcome-fashion. On LinkedIn (home of head-hunters!) there are often updates with images, like those shown below, typically getting a high number of likes and comments.
Here at BoxcoUK, where perfect presentation is really our thing, we regularly get asked for on-brand, onboarding sets, packed-perfect (and all’s well, when you have a staff onboarding budget and in-take of 80+ per year – but it doesn’t work out quite the same, when you’re averaging less than one new member a month). None-the-less it’s important to get it right, if you want to secure a loyal employee.
With this in mind, we’ve come up with an easy way of doing onboarding, that still looks great, alongside some content-ideas to help engage staff from the point they agree to join your team.
Obviously, you’re going to have your own ideas about what important elements are needed to make up the perfect onboarding pack, but we hope this helps.
In the run up – 4 Ways to engage
Thinking about the time between when the person agreed to come to you, and their start date (LinkedIn Talent Solutions calls this Pre-boarding). If this is a few months, you may want to think about engaging your client in a regular way during this time. Even an email would help. How much you put into this is down to you – think about the potential value of that staff member to your organisation, the value of securing them for the long-term, and whether you want to save them having second thoughts during that period and staying with their current employer or, worse case, looking elsewhere.
1.Your company strategy, culture, overview, brochure
Have they got this information from earlier interviews, or could these be part of your engagement programme, sent to the candidate in a structured way.
2.Were there any perks you discussed in the initial stages that you could elaborate on
Staff lunches, cars, company traditions, differing opening hours… e.g. early close Friday.
3. Explain what a typical day will be like
Add some humour, nothing to put them off but here’s your chance to mention when they might be expected to help out, which day the cleaner comes and when to avoid tripping over the hoover.
4. Overcoming the fear of first day – How will they get to work (do you need to send information about their car)
Do you need to let them know about where they should park, where staff are expected to hang their coats, put their bag, all the hum-drum things that are going to turn that first scary moment into an easier ride and a more enjoyable experience for both the new staff member and their colleagues.
Whether you send it ahead, or you put it on their desk (or both)… Why not “Invite them to join your family” – build a pack that appeals to their family situation, spouse, kids (whether you’ve taken an interest to find out will speak volumes) and gain a long-term commitment to your company. Clearly, for this, you’ve got to have a family to join, so you’ll need to think about setting this up with your existing staff ahead of pushing it out through HR.
Gifts you could include in your Onboarding pack
These are ideas that we’ve seen used in great onboarding packs. Pick the winners for your brand:
Chocolate Bar/Choc Orange
Something personalised with their own name (spelt correctly of course!)
“Onboarding in a Box”
The complete guide to Onboarding – Click below & print off
Look great, for less
OUR SUGGESTION is a pack of 12 Luxury gift boxes (we have these available in a range of colours), with a magnetic closure and coloured grosgrain ribbon. Pick a ribbon colour that works well with your brand, and possibly tissue paper, to hold the gifts, and add elegance.
CONTENTS Fill with gifts from the list above. No limits here.
GIFT TAG OR GREETINGS CARD You can add a gift tag made from a business card or compliment slip, or a greetings card, for a personal and welcoming touch.
Tel 020 3011 0211
Email your details with a best time to call, email@example.com
Stay in touch Follow BoxcoUK company page on LinkedIn
From first contact with you, clients need to feel your brand.
Give them a simple folder/handout/something tangible to walk away with, and you’ll be surprised how much people keep on to.
It feels warming for people who have made the effort to come to you, to then receive something in return, bedding in the start of a longer-term relationship.
Make sure to include how the client can access your product or service later – so often we think this part is ever so basic (“it’s all online”) but unless you spell it out, you leave room for hot potential clients to Google you/or your product and service, and find an alternative website to source from.
Simply include a print-off that has the contact details you hold for them, the client number automatically generated by your system, and maybe use this number for them to access your product or service later.
As long as your information feels worthwhile, and the delivery is carefully aligned to your brand values, then the number of clients returning is set to increase, and long after your system is set to retain data, and their original details.
To discuss your situation, why not contact the team here on 020 3011 0211
My alternative choice of heading was going to be “Choose a gift and make your customers happy or let them choose, and let them down.” This is how I feel right now…
When you give a gift you normally try and think about your audience, and how they will feel about receiving your gift, whether it links, or doesn’t, too big, too small, too over-powering, too happy-clappy, what will it say about your company, all these thoughts are going on in your head, planning a campaign, particularly the end-of year “Thanks for your business” campaign.
However, when Mailchimp gave me the chance to choose my end of year gift, I noted this was really clever. Mailchimp – by the way – provide an online portal to make email campaigns, and have an incredibly supportive team. Very clever, but I didn’t give it much more thought, other than thinking of it in relation to our own business here, ‘when we’re big enough to let customer’s choose’ a wishful, fluffy kind of thought, and being me, the chocoholic, I choose a Chocolate Freddie. The choice, from memory was a range of about 6 Freddie options in small circles (Freddie is their monkey-mascot) – a red Freddie head, a gold Freddie head, a few coloured options and the Chocolate one…
My thought process went something like this – Chocolate, gone in no time, (unlike the socks from last year) no one would be embarrased of me just eating a Freddie-head (rather than wearing the socks round the office for the afternoon, and on occasion later) and it wouldn’t be a useless toy, or synthetic fruit-flavoured like the others appeared to be.
So Chocolate-Freddie it was.
Today, I received my Freddie. When I saw Mailchimp on the barcode, I knew straight away what it would be. When I saw how big it was, I called over my colleague to come and share the chocolate… There must be loads of it! Then we discovered the Non-Chocolate Freddie. Only after we’d had a good try at snapping off his arms and thinking he looked like an easter egg on steriods, did we decide to start an online chat with Mailchimp and complain about the Freddie-chocolate rip-off. It wasn’t even a phone-holder (no second use…arghhh!)
Me: Hello – I just received my Chocolate Freddie… looks like chocolate, smells like chocolate… Can I eat it???
JJ: Hi Jeannette! Thanks for reaching out. I would recommend that you DON’T eat it 🙂
Me: Sorely disappointed. I choose it thinking it would be half the size, and chocolate.
JJ: Jeannette, I want you to know you’re not the first one to think that! I will definitely pass along that feedback, as I am a chocolate lover myself. Would you like some free MailChimp swag as a peace offering?
Me: Yes please. Anything. Totally understand if you can’t send it to arrive right this second.
JJ: https://link to swag-order options – hats and t’shirts but no sign of any chocolate Choose any one item on that page, and we’ll send it to you on the house! Was there anything else I can help you with today, Jeannette?
Me: I’m struggling now… no chocolate still! Nah – thanks
JJ: Sorry, Jeannette! I know how crucial chocolate is–you can submit your feedback here, too, if you want!
So I emailed my feedback… I can’t believe the diddle! All I wanted was a little nib of chocolate to nobble on, and instead I get this useless non-chocolate piece of plastic. Asside, we decided that the outer packaging is very good, and very well produced.
To finish off, and keep our relationship sweet this is how the online chat ended.
JJ: If you need anything else, let me know. I hope you enjoy the rest of your day!
Me: Thanks and you
Maybe I am thankless, but I take from this that, fluffy thoughts aside, better to choose a gift to keep your customers sweet than let them choose something useless without meaning to!
We recently attended a networking session on Marketing Strategy with delegates from a range of different industries, from apple packing machinery to plush office fit-out, clothing to coffee. Sharing ideas, we talked about the challenges we face, and the different marketing methods there are, which to utilise and how.
What came through was that everybody in management wants to know what marketing methods are best, and secondly, is marketing strategy separate or the same thing as having a Business Strategy? We quickly concluded on this second idea, during the session, because we felt that when there is a clear business strategy, then the marketing (strategy) falls into place… and really calling it a Marketing Strategy is way more complicated than is necessary! Read on for my takeaways…
So marketing is part of the business strategy… but everyone wants to know: What are the best marketing methods to pick up? With a myriad of ideas out there, which could be the big new thing for your brand. So many avenues, restraints with time and budget, you just can’t do everything, so choosing which ideas you use is vital.
There’s a need to evaluate the success rate of a marketing method, and which type of brands has it worked for so far? How can you take ideas used in other similar industries (but avoiding ‘me too’ – copying your competitors) and turn your industry on it’s head with a new idea, driving an awesome return in Sales.
Being able to measure the outcome of marketing – everyone knows that this is where digital shines – check someone is getting reports and knows what your key numbers are. Watching them month on month can be really helpful and supports evidence of an increase in Sales coming from digital.
For non-digital methods – it can be treated as a campaign, and measured against the number of leads you started off with. It might be that you have to measure by gut feel (and this isn’t guessing) – analysing and evaluating and asking honestly: Did this work, or did it NOT work? Who felt good about the marketing? Did it bring in more Sales? What response did you get from customers? Keep using the methods that are working. Find creative ways to finish with methods that aren’t working. Embracing change quicker and quicker.
Face to face is coming out tops again – Visiting customers is powerful – it proves you care (and exist!). There is so much noise out there now and so many people can be contacted in so many ways, that it seems face-to-face is coming out tops again. This is not just cold-calling – you have to know they have a need – you’re not wasting anyone’s time – it needs to be very focused.
Cold calls are no longer so cold… The phonecalls we make are purposeful, following up leads that have made contact with us, or where a colleague has referred someone. Social can soften up leads and generate a long-term interest as clients engage with your brand.
Email marketing is working for everyone… so long as it’s timely & relevant, it’s effective.
And lots more was discussed but no room here… Content marketing, make it interesting and something that is going to be shared. Digital marketing starts with a great website, the hub for all your marketing. Having a targeted individual strategy for different customers … or a set of customers. Having a referral scheme in place, videos of customer testimonials, an app…
Focusing on the marketing ideas that are working (because you know they are) is key to the Marketing Strategy (or Business strategy!) and measuring the results is calculating how far you’ve run and what distance there is still to cover.
Last month I attended a digital strategy networking session with 3 colleagues… It was a really simple occasion, with just 3 speakers which is quite enough when it comes to digital-points-of-view. A quick resume follows, including the gems of the event:
Lynsey Swales of SocialB – SEO, Social Media & Digital Marketing Expert/Trainer/Professional Speaker UK/Int. DMA Vice Chair Social Media Council
No. 1 is a good website: Good design, Clear ‘call to action’ so clients can find what they want straight away, Content & Google wants to see you updating regularly, Navigation (across the top is best) focus on getting people to the right part of your website, Credibility (get your accreditations up there), Mobile Friendly & your social media buttons clear.
For SEO compile a list of all the key words for your product or service – an Excel doc will do – show this to everyone who does anything online for the business – don’t assume you know what people will Google. These key words should appear in URL title and meta descriptions, headings, images and Alt descriptions, but not so over the top that clients switch off (it’s only for Google). Some great content Lynsey.
Tom Bowden – Director at Footprint Digital Ltd
Whatever you do in Marketing – Measure it, Test it – don’t just put a system in place and hope marketing works. On Adwords – providing you’re generating business, they make good sense. In his delivery he did some live tests for the audience to participate in choosing which bar or button they would have clicked, and showing what actual digital tests had proved, e.g. 3 Google adverts with slightly different wording and which had infact generated the highest response.
Thanks Tom, enjoyed you’re tests & the audience interaction was great.
Mili Ponce – International Strategist on Social Media Marketing, Traffic and Lead Generation, Web Conversion and PPC
In Jan 2016 there is 7.395 billion people alive, 3.419 billion Internet users, 2.307 billion active social media users, 3.790 billion unique mobile users (this is 51% of the total population!) and 1.968 active mobile social users.
Social Media use across the world is 31% but in North America it is 59% of the population; South America 50%; West Europe 48%; East Asia 48%; Ocenia including Australisia 45%; East Europe 45% and Central America 40%. After that there is Southeast Asia at 37%, Middle East 26%, South Asia 11%, Africa 11% and Central Asia 6%.
Reddit is popular, given that the website looks a shade 80-ish… definitely worth looking at it if your product is technologically niche, scientific, innovative. Facebook is everything, talk to your clients when they are in their lest defensive mode.
Social media is about brand-awareness, not about your products & services, it’s about your great relationships.
ROI on Direct Mail/marketing sent out by post is now up to 10% – this is largely thought to be due to the lack of post we receive that more envelopes get opened.
If your website is not getting a 10% return (100 visits, 10 actions) then social media is not worth starting… Food for thought that, Mili. Another bacon roll please.
After a high pressure six month training period between January and June this year, the team celebrated the arrival of the Pass certificates on Monday. Thanks go to the team at Quest for helping us through!
The marketing stunt for Easter. This branded promotional item is designed to be disruptive, and get the whole office eating Easter Eggs and discussing the great company that sent them! Even clients with strict gift policies won’t be able to resist.
Entire office celebration when they arrive!
Generous gift with your company name on
Iconic Chocolate Easter Eggs
Ultimate brand space, all over the box
Celebrate Easter ’15 in style
10 Easter Eggs + space for A5 literature or samples = Generous gift for the whole office to share + Display box with your Company Branding on.
Want a different Easter Egg in the pack?
No problem! These are charged at cost (subject to UK availability), so nearer to time of packing, it may be possible to source a different Easter egg with a minor cost implication. Please confirm your preference when ordering.
To find out more email firstname.lastname@example.org
Individually addressed despatch available, please enquire