Brand building through ‘out of office’ message

Getting people to notice your brand isn’t hard – it’s all about the details. NAOMI SIMSON

Naomi Simson

By Naomi Simson

You know I love speaking about the different ways that businesses can stand out and get people experiencing the brand. And it’s not rocket science. It is just a matter of noticing the detail.

My friend Emma Isaacs has in her email footer her preferred coffee – it used to be skim latte, but I notice she has changed to peppermint tea. You know her a bit, even if you’ve never met. As she calls it, the Seth Godin Purple Cow effect.

I know the team at RedBalloon all have their favourite experience on their business card – it gives people who meet them an idea about who they are beyond business. We are all people after all.

Businesses are not faceless organisations… it is just a whole bunch of people pulling in the one direction. Any communication gives people an insight into who you are.

For example, the daily message that you leave on your voice mail. I know mine sounds like a bit of a party going on in the background – people comment “you seem to be having a good time over there at RedBalloon”.

Today I sent a message to a group of people and I got two out-of-office replies. Which of these two businesses would you prefer to do business with…. interesting to note they are in a similar industry. The copy below are exact “cut and pastes” (including typos). I have only removed their real names and numbers.

“Hello, I will be on away from my desk today, in meetingss, Wednesday 29th Octobe,r until 4pm. For urgent matters, please call my assistant, XXX on xxx or call my mobile on xxx.
Regards, XX”


“You gotta love getting back to basics 🙂 In an unprecedented, bold and revolutionary move, I am choosing to disable my email completely and embrace the joy of hearing actual voices instead.
So if you’re a fellow human being who’s more heart & soul than internet cyborg, rest assured you can contact me for anything urgent on the good old fashioned telephone via: xxx or my mobile for urgent matters and texts – xxx.
Don’t forget to brush your teeth before you call and grin broadly, because unlike email, I can tell whether or not you’re smiling over the phone! 🙂 xxxx
P.S. If you need to send me info or docs to look at please send them to XX”

There are so many ways for us to build the brand personality of the business. Let’s start with the basics.


Naomi is a finalist in the 2008 Australian HR Awards and the 2008 Telstra Women’s Business Awards, winners to be announced end 2008. Naomi was also a finalist for the BRW Most Admired Business Owner Award in 2008 and Marketing Employer of Choice by B&T in 2007. One of Australia’s outstanding female entrepreneurs, Naomi regularly entertains as a professional speaker inspiring middle to high-level leaders on employer branding, engagement and reward and recognition. Naomi writes a blogand has written a book sharing the lessons from her first five years.

To read more Naomi Simson blogs, click here .



Rick Meekins writes: Hi, Naomi! Great article! These are the types of thoughts that bridge the chasm between business and personality. So long we’ve been told we need to seperate the two, but we forget… PEOPLE DO BUSINESS WITH OTHER PEOPLE!




Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments