6 Quick Ways to Use Social Media for Branding
by smallbiztrends, Guest Blogger
- Created: September 12, 2013, 10:06 am
While there’s no overnight success when it comes to converting social media followers to customers, there are some strategies you can implement immediately to see results. Remember the importance of branding – every social interaction says something about your brand. Here’s how to make sure it says exactly what you want your brand to convey:
1. Upload Consistent Avatars
If you’ve got an old logo for your Twitter icon, your new company logo for Facebook and a product image on Google +, you’re sending a mixed message to your followers and customers. Stick to a single avatar across all channels so that visitors build a mental connection from the social platform back to your site.
Use a high-quality version (large pixel size) of your company logo, unless you’re branding yourself, in which case you should use a really great smiling photograph. The reason to use a large image size is that sometimes others download your logo from social sites if they write about your company, so you want it to be as high quality as possible.
2. Use Similar Colors and Design Across Platforms
In addition to ensuring that your images are the same on all social media profiles, it’s important to deliver a similar look across the board. This, too, should tie in with what you’re doing on your business’ website.
Twitter allows you to upload a custom background to your profile. Facebook and Google + provide a large banner photo or image up top. These are valuable real estate locations, and they provide you with the opportunity to use similar color and design elements to integrate with your company logo colors and the design of your site. A visitor should be able to recognize your brand from any social page they visit.
3. Deliver Consistent Messaging
Develop a voice that speaks to what your company is all about. If you provide useful tips for your audience on Facebook in a professional tone, make sure you’re not using all caps and slang (“OMG THIS BLOG POST ROXX!”) on Twitter, as an example.
Your social updates represent your company so it’s important, first of all, to maintain a professional voice, and second, to be consistent. Visitors should know what to expect when browsing your social profiles.
This is especially important if specific qualifies are key to the impression you want to convey: luxury, formality, trust, professionalism or other attributes. If one of those types of attributes is important to your brand, you need to convey that attribute throughout your social messaging.
4. Provide Unique Content on Each Channel
That being said, you shouldn’t duplicate content across all social channels. It’s fine to share the same blog post, as an example, but find a new way to present it for each channel.
Ideally, you want to give people a reason to follow you on all platforms. If you’re delivering the same identical update on all at exactly the same time, there’s no reason for them to do that.
Diversify your communication strategy for each. Mix up what you offer, as in this example:
- On Twitter, share relevant links from our blog and other industry sites
- On Facebook, share videos our audience appreciates, as well as answer questions about our products
- On LinkedIn, actively participate in industry groups
- On Google+, engage with other users and start a dialogue
5. Check for “Unofficial” Pages, Claim Them, and Brand Them
Check social sites to make sure there are not already pages set up that you haven’t claimed.
This can happen on review sites like Yelp. Look for instructions on how to claim your profile, such as here for Yelp.
On sites like LinkedIn, there may be a company page but no one is listed as the Administrator and therefore no one can update the page. So you have to contact LinkedIn to be able to assign administrators.
Or it may be a situation where someone has used your company name without permission, in which case you will have to contact the social network and report the unauthorized use. Facebook has a form to report impersonations of individuals or companies.
6. Focus on 2 to 4 Social Sites
It is possible to go overboard when it comes to joining social media sites. Sure, you want to reach as many people as possible, but you’ll do better to zero in on only as many as you have time to update. Think deep, not wide.
When you focus, it is easier to develop a consistent message and brand visibility.
Remember, the more effort you put into social media, the better the results. Aim for a consistent, engaging experience, and you will attract new followers and, eventually, customers.
About the Author
My name is Anita Campbell. I run online communities and information websites reaching over 6 million small business owners, stakeholders and entrepreneurs annually, including Small Business Trends, a daily publication about small business issues, and BizSugar.com, a small business social media site.
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