12 Oct Social Media Branding: Creating a Consistent Online Presence
Social media is an absolute must have for your brand in today’s digital age. More than ever, users are taking to social media to follow and interact with their favorite brands. With thousands of businesses creating social media pages, how can your brand possibly stand out among the competition? A key factor to maximizing your online presence is creating consistency across all of your social media channels.
Before setting up your accounts, ask yourself, how is your brand conceived by the public or better yet, how do we want to be perceived? Are we a company that is lighthearted and fun, or is our business serious and sensitive? Use your social channels as an extension of your brand to better connect and engage with your audience, so that they form an emotional connection to your brand. Social media can be a great tool to get creative with your brand voice if done right. Brand’s like Chipotle are using twitter to be a bit quirky, using lots of puns and playing off of pop culture.
Have fun developing your voice and tone, but most importantly, be consistent.
Consistent Imagery & Tone
Speaking of consistency, the way you present your different social channels to your audience must be consistent. This is how you will better drive brand recognition and brand identity. What is your brand color or color scheme? How about your tone? Use these color palettes across all of your platforms so an audience member can easily identify your content. For example, Tiffany & Co. absolutely owns their “Tiffany blue” across all of their imagery and their audience easily associates this soft blue with the brand.
Now to the look and feel – do you have access to regularly produced imagery or do you need a stock imagery account? Create a content calendar so you can plan out your posts ahead of time, allowing you time to get your assets in order. Visuals (video included!) will perform significantly greater than all text posts and will allow for better audience engagement and reach.
Engage with Your Audience
More than ever, consumers are taking to social media to voice their feedback of brands. This means they may tweet to your brand, or comment on Facebook and Instagram pages looking for a response. Be sure to keep your voice in the way you respond consistent across platforms. You are providing customer service and should always be kind and understanding to an unhappy customer. The customer should know that regardless of which channel they choose to contact you through, all channels will remain consistent in tone of voice and acknowledgement of their concern.
Don’t forget to let social media users know what platforms you are on and why they should be following you on them. You may feel like telling your audience to follow you on every platform can be too much, but it really is not, as each user has their platform of preference and won’t be on each channel at all times. Tell them what is different about each of your channels too, perhaps you share employment opportunities to LinkedIn, but run contests on Twitter.
As you know by now, different social channels will all have consistent branding and messaging, but each channel will have some unique capabilities (like Instagram’s new “stories” feature) that allow you to reach and interact with your audience in different ways. That’s part of the fun of social media as a whole!
As busy as you may be, don’t forget to keep up with your different social accounts. Your audience members may be strongly attached to one platform and look there for new content. Use scheduling tools to make keeping up with regular posts easier, and have monthly brainstorm sessions to come up with ideas for the month ahead so you never run out of content. It can be challenging to constantly produce fresh content, so don’t forget to repurpose older content that is still relevant. For example, your Twitter followers may not have seen that article you shared on Facebook a few months ago, so don’t be afraid to share it on a different platform.