A colleague and I have recently been joking about starting a cult at our office. The busy researchers we work with sometimes don't see the value in communications activities, so we have to work hard on persuading and tracking the value of our campaigns.
We have learned to be strategic about who we persuade and how. What we have been doing has a name: powermapping.
We identify the issue's stakeholder or decision maker, identify who she listens to and who she seeks out for advice, and foster relationships with those advisers.
Even if we can't directly speak to the decision maker because of her busy schedule, she will hear about our ideas from her advisors, creating an echo chamber.
Creating influence in our office culture and in our marketing activities through powermapping lets us bypass objections about our ideas because it's coming from trusted advisors.
It's also helpful because it lets others think it was their idea in the first place, and helps them develop better taste. A rising tide lifts all boats—so influencing colleagues to have better taste makes the whole organization better.
Every conversation with your colleagues is an opportunity to sell your ideas. So get excited about your work and start chatting at the water cooler.