Investing in stories: Finders Seekers welcomes comms pro Lotta Backlund to its board

At Finders Seekers, we are super excited to welcome Lotta Backlund, Finnish comms pro and broadcaster, to our board.

Here is how Lotta will help us spread the Finders Seekers message far and wide…

Meet Lotta Backlund: Podcaster, broadcaster & writer

Lotta is currently Head of Comms & PR for Rovio (the Finnish mobile gaming company behind Angry Birds). At Rovio, Lotta works with a team of five and manages all of Rovio’s (non-Angry Birds) PR and comms, both external and internal.

Before Rovio, Lotta’s comms journey took her from an eight-year stint in international sales & development for Warner Bros to running comms for the Mayor’s office here in Helsinki.

Lotta has also spent time on the other side of the lens working in both TV and radio as a broadcaster, using her business acumen and stand-up comedy skills to spread joy. She is also a published author with her own podcast and a column in the biggest Finnish women’s magazine Me Naiset!

Why everything is comms these days

“More and more people will say this, but everything is comms these days. Back in the day comms wasn’t a thing until you got listed and had to send out press releases, but now businesses realize how essential communications is, especially internal communications are increasingly important in employee retention and making sure your business runs smoothly and people are happy at work.

When you are a small business, you can take care of internal comms simply by putting five people in the same meeting room, but as you grow, internal comms becomes a lot more complicated and strategic.

Communications is essential for building a solid company culture: how to make people feel welcome, and how clients and partners feel about working with you.”

Why are talent attraction and comms so intimately linked?

“Everyone wants the best talent. Especially if you’re not the obvious leader in your industry, you need great talent to first find out about you, and then choose you.”

Comms is about ensuring that people on the outside understand what you are trying to convey on the inside.

“Before, if you wanted to find out something about a company, you would go to the phonebook and call them. Now there are a whole host of channels and touchpoints for your business.

It’s not just about figuring out that first touchpoint, but about having several great touchpoints. A person may interact with a company or a brand ten times before sending in an application.”

At Rovio, Lotta and her team realize employer branding comes in many forms: it can be about creating engaging content for a target talent group by covering topics such as machine learning on a tech blog or creating an air of FOMO by posting amazing videos from company parties. The goal is to get the candidate a little hooked by the time they actually see a Rovio job ad.

Telling stories people can understand

Storytelling has always been close to Lotta’s heart, and narratives are essential to building a great employer brand.

“I have always been interested in stories and people. In the end, everything I have done has been about storytelling, even in policy comms: a change to the city budget is not interesting, but what is interesting is how it affects people’s lives.”

“You can’t just sprinkle some comms on it”

Another important message that Lotta wants to highlight is that companies cannot just ‘sprinkle’ comms on things, they must really live and embody the messages they put out.

This is something that we always highlight in our employer branding strategies.

Tech comms challenges

So, what are some comms challenges we face in the tech industry?

“There is a tendency to veer into jargon, whereas the goal should be to explain things in plain terms.”

In tech it’s not just about hiring techy people, you also need people with an art and design background.

In recruitment, using certain language in job ads can put people off.

“With job ads it’s important to get the pitch right: even if HR is your superpower, you may want comms to have a say on how we phrase things.”

Why Finders Seekers?

Lotta is very impressed by the company: “I think it’s amazing that Finders Seekers has started with no external financing, has grown so quickly, and is obviously amazing at what it does.

There’s a lot of strategic thinking going on here: marrying tech talent expertise with strategic comms in terms of EB is great. Combining these two things is genius.”

For Lotta, joining the Finders Seekers board came off the back of a personal recommendation and one of the most important things for her was the chemistry fit.

What do you bring to Finders Seekers?

Lotta is looking forward to getting to grips with comms and branding at Finders Seekers:

“I think there is a real potential to do something great here and be a real thought-leader.”

As Finders Seekers continues to grow quickly, Lotta hopes that her perspective on the board will remind leaders of their comms position.

“The board is there to question and challenge, to ensure you’ve looked at things from all angles.”

All about getting the best results together

Working on the Finders Seekers board for Lotta is not about monetary gain.

“I am here for other reasons, maybe even for a bit of coaching.

I want to see the best possible results for Finders Seekers as a company – all the ingredients for continued success are there.”

Lotta’s top tip for great comms?

“Be consistent. Think of what you’re doing in 360 and maintain a consistent tone of voice everywhere.”

Watch this space! As Lotta readies herself for a busy winter of writing her next book and diving into the Finders Seekers world, we expect to hear great things…