The snowball effect of putting company culture on view

February 22, 2023
2 min read

This post originally appeared on LinkedIn

A humbling moment today drove home the hidden effects a creative team can have.

On a Zoom call with several other new Evernote alumni, one person mentioned in passing that the old Evernote podcast (which I hosted) made him want to join the company.

A few minutes later, another employee said our “behind the scenes” videos with Ian Small (which I directed) made him want to join the company.

These were quality people. Folks I really respected. And I was floored.

We created those series as part of a general marketing and comms strategy. In the podcast, we wanted to build awareness and present a corporate point of view on relevant topics like productivity, creativity, and the future of work. In the videos, we wanted an open, authentic way to explain how we were rebuilding our products, straight from the boss and the people doing the work. We hoped the videos would make the company more attractive to engineers, but recruiting wasn’t the focus.

Sitting on the call today, I realized we did more than we set out to do. Our podcasts and videos put our culture and values on display, and presented Evernote as a thoughtful, enthusiastic company—one that cared about its customers, about the things that drove them, and about our place in the world. We also showed awareness that we weren’t perfect, but were earnestly striving to become “ever better.”

And in doing that, we attracted some great people to join us, people who strengthened that culture and those values, and made the company an even more incredible place to work. It was a snowball effect, and our scrappy little creative studio helped push that ball down the hill.

I guess the lesson I take from this is a reminder to always think beyond the creative brief, and beyond the marketing goals. Think about everybody who will see the work—not only customers and prospects but also the people inside your company, and the ones who could be a part of it in the future.

Because you’re not only crafting a marketing message. You’re crafting an identity. And that affects EVERYTHING.