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Why “Walmart’s Riding in Cars with Execs” is Employer Brand gold

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If you’ve worked in the Employer Brand-Social space for any length of time, you know, great case studies and good work is hard to come by.

If you look around at what most brands are doing on the Employer Brand-Social front, it’s not all that sophisticated.

Much of the day-to-day content shared on Facebook by Employer Brands is garden-variety and predictable.

Shots of teams demonstrating how great it is to work for the brand.

Employee stories highlighting the positives of the company’s culture.

Shots of HR teams at job fairs.

Heck, some brands are still focusing on “memes” like “One Word Wednesdays” and “Motivation Monday”.

Then, along comes Walmart with this creative video execution featuring its CEO Doug McMillon.

What makes this example so great in the Employer Brand social world?

It plays on the popular James Corden idea

Obviously, Walmart is playing of this popular segment of the Late Late Show on CBS (side note: this is easily my favorite edition of the popular segment).

What’s smart about this is they didn’t mimic the idea entirely–they twisted it to fit an Employer Brand need (a chance to chat virtually face-to-face with the CEO of America’s largest company).

What a great way to humanize and soften up the CEO

In case you haven’t noticed, not everyone loves Walmart. As the biggest company in America, it has a bullseye on its proverbial chest. And, as the CEO of that company, McMillon is often cast as public-enemy number-one by those with an axe to grind with Walmart. So, from an Employer Brand perspective, this is a challenge. Prospective employees care about the man/woman leading your company. They want to feel like they’re following a leader who’s compassionate and visionary. They want to follow someone like LIKE. So, humanizing and softening up the CEO is almost always a priority for a big Employer Brand like Walmart. And, this was a creative, interesting way for them to do that via a medium which allows them to really draw people closer to Mr. McMillon.

Walmart kept it light–real light

One of the things I loved most about this video was how light, airy and fun Walmart–and Doug and the driver–kept the questions and banter. I mean, they could have made this REAL boring. Like corporate communications boring 🙂 But, they didn’t. The driver asked questions like “Was it hard to close your MySpace account?” and “Did you watch Beyonce’s Lemonade?” He also pokes fun at McMillon saying “Welcome to Facebook!” as soon as he gets in the car. How many employees do you think would say those things to their CEO? But, that’s what makes this so brilliant. McMillon doesn’t take himself too seriously. He’s very disarming. In fact, he comes across as amiable, approachable and really, the kinda guy anyone would want to work for.

Walmart paid attention to the details

Little things like the tuxedo t-shirt the driver is wearing (brilliant). The fact that he just throws the questions/cards in the back seat after he’s done (funny). And, the fact that he asked a great series of timely questions (Chewbacca Mom/Beyonce) and hard-driving questions designed to get McMillion talking about employees (“What is one thing you’re seeing in associates that gets you really excited about the future?”). It’s only four minutes long–but it’s produced VERY well.

Overall, one of the better Employer Brand-Social examples I’ve seen on Facebook to date.

Kudos, Walmart Employer Brand team. Take a bow. You’ve certainly earned it.

 

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Why “Walmart’s Riding in Cars with Execs” is Employer Brand gold

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