If you don’t have a recognizable brand, you should. In short, your brand is the impression people have when they hear of you. A brand is not just a memorable company name, logo, and slogan. It is also your reputation: throughout your industry, in the news, and—especially these days—on social media.
You build your brand from the day you first open your doors for business, whether in a brick-and-mortar establishment or solely online. What do people see when they first come to your website? Your company’s name and logo, and a slogan or motto, if you have one. That’s your brand.
A recognizable brand will distinguish you from your competitors, help you gain attention in the marketplace, and let people find you in the cacophony of the marketplace. The success of your branding determines the success of your business. And, since 69 percent of Americans use social media, it’s the primary place these days to make people aware of your brand. Here are some tips on how to use social media successfully to build your brand.
- Develop a consistent look
This is the best way to ensure your brand is instantly recognizable. Think of some of the more recognizable brands from major corporations: Coca-Cola’s white wave on a red background; the Nike swoosh; McDonald’s golden arches. In the case of social media platforms, there’s Twitter’s bluebird, the Pinterest “P”, the Facebook lower-case “f” . . . and so on. No matter what platform you’re on, always include your company’s logo in the main profile image. (And if you don’t have a memorable logo, let our branding experts help you create one.)
This also applies to the images and content that you share with your fans. Develop a strategy that contains branded images that look similar and have a consistent theme throughout.
- Connect with your fans
We talked recently about how to find the best social media platforms for your product or service (How To Find Your Customers On Social Media). It’s important that you not waste valuable time targeting platforms that don’t connect with your customers. In addition, you should take advantage of user-generated content (UGC) to keep fans interested and excited. If they post photos and/or videos related to your business, share them with your entire community. If they have questions, answer them. If they have complaints and/or compliments, address them immediately, and see if you can use those complaints to improve your product or service.
Remember that social media is a two-way street. Don’t just react to their posts and tweets. Ask your fans’ opinions. Ask them to share your posts. Request feedback, and respond to it. Ask for testimonials you can post, and be sure thank the person when you get them. Treat social media interactions as conversations, and always follow up with any comment.
- Create engaging content
Give your audience a reason to want to follow you and engage with or share your posts. Give them tips and hints in your area of expertise; new ways of using your product; behind-the-scenes glimpses or inside info about your business; the benefits of using your product, or product demonstrations. Compelling content will make them want to keep coming back.
And remember that social media is primarily a visual medium (with the possible exception of Twitter). Photos and videos are more likely to capture attention than simple text.
There is much more that goes into building a successful brand on social media. We have discussed some of them in this space before, but for an in-depth strategy on how to build a brand, consult the marketing experts at 101 Management, Inc. We have the expertise and experience that can help you stand out in the crowd.