Building a virtual time capsule can be engaging both for employees and for customers and clients. Along with creating a virtual time capsule, companies and organizations of all sizes can also create a hard copy version to keep for generations.
So what is a virtual time capsule? It’s a time capsule created for online media, whether a website, mobile device, or whatever is invented in the future!
Why should your business create a virtual time capsule?
- To transmit the history and heritage of a company or organization to employees and customers or clients
- To bring additional attention to an anniversary of a company, organization, or brand
- To re-brand a company or product
- As part of a launch of a new product
- To be part of a social media campaign
- And to include in new employee orientation
How do you create a time capsule?
1. Search your archives or search for the founding documents and other historic documents. Don’t have an archive? As employees to check out their files and look into what is in storage, including in a bank vault. You can also visit your local government office if you are missing the founding papers.
2. Go online and look for references to your business and, if necessary, obtain permission with attribution to use the articles and images you find.
3. Visit your local historical society and research what was happening in your city, state, and country and the world at the time of the founding of your company and during its years in business.
4. Make a list of paper records, photographs, videos, and DVDs and email or post on your intranet (but not the internet, at this point) and ask employees to select 10 each for inclusion.
5. Ask employees to select 10 items each that tell what life is like today for people in the future. It can be anything from a device to food to a photograph of the skyline to clothing or a TV show.
6. Select 25 items from the entries about company and 25 which illustrate life in your area today, and post on your website.
7. Design a virtual time capsule and post on your website and social media, describing what you are doing.
8. For one month, post several items each day.
9. Then post all 50 items.
10. Have a contest for both employees and customers with prizes.
11. Select the final items and let the world know!
12. Give out prizes ad publicize that.
13. Make a hard copy and put it in your office or store it offsite. Hard copies last thousands of years! We don’t know how long what we create today in another format will last.
14. Decide when the time capsule will be open and let people know.
15. Have fun!
Phyllis Barr is president of Corporate Culture Marketing by Barr Consulting Services, which helps companies leverage their history and heritage. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.