Social media has been a real game-changer in the world of marketing. Free to set up and easy to use, it gives smaller businesses a level playing field where they have the chance to compete with the big brands. But just because it’s easy to use, it doesn’t mean you should jump right in without a properly thought-out brand identity and tone of voice. In this blog we’ll take a look at the process of branding your business on social media – and exactly why it’s so important.
Strike the right tone
Social media is a fantastic way to reach the right people, but to do this successfully, you’ll need to find your voice. Come up with a strategy that identifies the language and tone of voice you’ll use in all your posts, whether that’s light-hearted and jokey, or more serious and formal. Not all social media sites are equal, so it’s fine for your posts to vary slightly from platform to platform (chatty and concise for Twitter, more detailed for Facebook). Nevertheless, your voice should remain consistent and recognisable wherever it appears. Create a social media policy detailing your posting style, so that everyone’s on the same page.
Keep it consistent
Social media platforms don’t operate in isolation; in the real world, people might check Facebook on their phones at the station, look up and read an advertising billboard, then listen to the ads on their favourite radio station. So it’s really important to achieve a unified message across your online and offline channels. That way you can strengthen and reinforce your brand presence – so people will recognise you wherever they happen to be.
Use high quality images
In this Instagram era, social media content is all about the images. Don’t be tempted to skimp on this side of your content creation; plan your images just as carefully as your text-based content, and invest in high-quality photos that will help you stand out. Experiment with different filters until you find a signature look that reflects your brand. And don’t forget to add a digital watermark to all the photos you post, so people know that they came from you.
Be prepared for negative comments
Unfortunately, social media isn’t always full of positive comments raving about your brand. Everyone, from corporate giants to boutique businesses, may face negative feedback on their social media channels. And when this happens, it’s how you deal with it that matters. Decide in advance what the process is for dealing with a complaint on social media. However you manage this, it’s important to stay on-brand, be courteous, and show that you’re listening.
Plan your content
Social media marketing is a busy, time-consuming job. But you don’t have to do it all on the fly. Create a content planning calendar and schedule some posts in advance. This will leave you free to react to trending hashtags and other time-sensitive developments. When thinking about when to post, do some research into when your target audience is most active on each platform – and schedule your updates to catch their attention.
Article authored by Cheryl Luzet, SEO Resident Expert at The Outsourcing Way.