The Link Between Branding and Social Media

We’ve talked before about the use of promotional products in your branding efforts. Today we’re going to explore ways to improve your social media presence to better reflect your brand and engage your audience. Why? Because in 2016, if your company or idea isn’t represented on social media, you will have a much harder time finding success.

Branding and social media

photo credit: Geekia / Flickr

This isn’t just a tagline or one of those “buzz phrases.” It is the truth. According to Adweek.com, almost 30% of the time a person spends online is spent on social media sites. The average adult has 5.5 accounts across social media and is active on 2-3 of them. One of the first rules of marketing and branding is to go to where your audience lives. Well, right now your audience lives on social media. If you want to increase your sales and profit margins, you need to build your presence there, too.

So how do you do this? How do you build a presence that people not only notice but with which they want to interact? How do you brand that presence properly? Here are some tips that should work well for you.

Choose the Right Channels

Your first impulse is likely going to be to set up profiles on every social media network you can find. This is a good idea in terms of claiming your company’s name before anybody else can. In terms of engagement, however, you will be stretching yourself and your company’s social media manager way too thin. Like SocialVantage, a firm that specializes in social media management, reminds us: quality is better than quantity when it comes to social media engagement. Do some research on the different networks out there and start building your engagement with the network that best fits your target demographic. Then, spread out from there.

Personality Matters

It is vitally important that your tone and message stay consistent across your site and your social media accounts. For example, a website that is overtly formal in tone should not have a Facebook page full of slang and selfies. It will confuse your audience and they will have a hard time trusting you. Remember: everything you put into the world reflects your brand. Use your brand’s personality to your advantage as you work on building your profiles and increasing their engagement.

Get Personal

The biggest reason that social media is so important both to individuals and to brands is that it provides an easy avenue for connection. The usual “canned” responses won’t work on social media like they might in an email. In the B2B sector, 80% of the companies that include personalization in their marketing and branding show a marked improvement in their conversion rates. So, how do you do this on a social site like Twitter or Facebook?

  • Respond quickly
  • Respond authentically (no, “we appreciate your feedback” or “thanks for getting in touch!” actually address what the post said)
  • Follow up directly via direct message or a public reply.

Just Say No to Stock

By now the fact that including images in your posts increases your engagement is old news. What’s new is that stock images–especially the images you can find for free–simply aren’t cutting it anymore. Your audience wants to see what the people in your company and your actual clients look like. This means using photos that you have taken professionally as well as photos you take yourselves in the posts you publish. Authentic photos increase engagement dramatically.

Humor is a Fine Line

Working cat with a laptop and mouse

The urge to be funny on social media is understandable. The environment is more conversational and less formal. It’s okay to use colloquialisms and slang there. Humor, however, is a minefield. There are always going to be people who take your jokes literally, so it’s good to use humor sparingly. If you want to make your post funny but aren’t sure how the joke in your head will play, try using a funny or cute GIF instead.

Takeaway

Social media is going to play a large role in how you brand your company and products. This is a given. So why not use it to your advantage with the tips we’ve given you here?

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