I’ve recently read a lot about the about the importance of engaging consumers to build your brand. And rightly so. Understanding and engaging with your customer is fundamental to brand building success. What gets less digital ink, though, is the equally important task of engaging your employees to build your brand. Not just your marketing department. Not just a few select social bloggers. But every rank-and-file employee, from tech support to customer service. Marketing leaders agree. In fact, in Forrester’s recent survey of marketing leaders, 100% of respondents agreed that “brand building is a company-wide effort that requires employees in all departments to be brand ambassadors.” But this same survey reveals that engaging the enterprise is where marketers struggle most. Marketing leaders are on solid ground when it comes to traditional brand building disciplines such as defining the brand North Star and using that brand promise to guide the brand experience. It is the next stage — creating a consistent brand experience across all functions and touchpoints — that is the chasm that most marketing leaders have yet to bridge. Forrester’s survey reveals that just 9% of respondents are true brand building leaders, who have brand building integrated and embraced across all aspects of the business. Most are still experimenting, but not integrating.

What’s your brand building maturity? As part of the “21st Century Brand Marketing Playbook,” we’ve developed a self-assessment tool that you can find in my report “Evaluate Your Brand Building Capabilities.” Then read “Benchmark Your Brand Building Capabilities” to see how you compare with your peers and what you can learn from companies like IBM and Adobe to engage your organization and become a brand building leader.

How are you engaging your organization to build your 21st century brand? I’d love to hear about both your struggles and your successes.