Corporate Communication. The term sounds easy enough to understand, right? So, what is it exactly? We compiled the following working definition: “Corporate communication is the Building and maintaining of a corporation’s brand and reputation by consistently and persuasively communicating its narrative and identity through the integration of symbols.” (It’s not perfect, but it’s someplace for us to start.)
You may be thinking to yourself, “Great, this blog has provided us with yet another definition of corporate communication.” Rather than beating a dead horse with a definition stick, we decided to focus more on the importance of the individual components of corporate communication and how they all work together to build and maintain a corporation’s brand and reputation.
Corporate communication isn’t just a stand-alone subject. It is composed of many facets: the brand, its reputation, its identity, its narrative, and how symbols play into the creation and maintenance of all of these. To help gain a better understanding of corporate communication in the real world, we decided to look to a company here in Wilmington that displays many of the aspects of corporate communication. The company we chose is a local, independent bookstore known as Pomegranate Books.
We analyzed the methods that Pomegranate Books uses to build its brand and create relationships with its customers. Let’s first look at the brand Pomegranate has created for itself as an independent bookstore that accommodates local writers and literary groups. Their identity is rooted in the fact that they are smaller than the chain bookstores, while boasting to be the largest independent bookstore in Wilmington. Their size allows them to better communicate with and cater to their local clientele. They do this through good old-fashioned word of mouth, as well as social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and blogs. On their facebook page, they consistently ask their followers what they are reading at the moment. This promotes a dialogue with their customers, which helps reinforce their narrative. By combining social media, word of mouth, and press releases, they keep their reputation and identity consistent.
Pomegranate Book’s reputation is that of a “small, but well-curated” bookstore that caters to the community. They communicate their reputation through their products and practices. Their narrative is based on their heavy involvement in the community. The shop’s friendly staff supports businesses, charities, book clubs and events such as featuring local authors and holding book signings. This helps to reinforce their local identity and reputation.
Pomegranate Books uses the logo of none other than a pomegranate to symbolize their company. Much like the fruit of its namesake, Pomegranate Books has many seeds at its center. Through Pomegranate Book’s corporate communication, these seeds can sprout into helpful contributions to the community and create a positive environment. Our group feels that this quaint little bookstore offers a true example of corporate communication at work.
-Sean, Eliza, Jocelyn, Sarah