Organizations have always realized the importance of building and nurturing strong brands. Brands are strategic assets that can benefit the organization in the long term.
With social media, businesses discovered different uses of this new medium including social selling, social customer service, social advertising, as well as social branding.
As a matter of fact, social branding proved to be probably the most critical uses of social media for businesses of all types. But despite the opportunity it provides, the problem here is, and unlike other channels, social media requires special attention from organizations since they are open to customer direct interaction which is viewed by hundreds of millions of users. Therefore, any mistake in handling the communication or misrepresenting the brand can lead to disastrous results as happened in many occasions. Careful planning and timely execution is a must for a successful branding on social media.
A “brand” is a name with the power to influence markets. The opposite to brand is commodity. While brands compete on perceived value, commodities compete on price solely.
“Branding” is the marketing practice of creating a name, symbol or design that identifies and differentiates a brand from other brands.
“Social branding” is the use of social media channels and tools to achieve branding goals.
How to do social branding, the right way
Obviously we cannot have a one inclusive list of actions as “the right way,” we provide here, however, a useful list of rules:
- Be quick and responsive: Whenever a user posts to any of your social accounts asking a question, commenting, or even complaining, you have to respond in a timely fashion, and remember, the way you treat one user is seen by thousands of others
- Provide valuable and shareable content. You have to appear authoritative in your domain
- Don’t ignore users: Involve them
- Be real. Social media users appreciate brands that appear genuinely personal, trustworthy, unique, and caring
- Leverage influencers
- Don’t be excessive with your self-promotion
- Let brand name be consistent across channels
- Use consistent brand colors across channels
- Promote the right offers: Users not only expect you to promote your products/services; they WANT you to. You have, however, do it in a balanced, not too-pushy manner
- Use social campaigns to promote content. Leverage social advertising as well as create contests to increase loyalty and awareness
- Choose the right networks. There are many social networks. You should choose the ones that best serve your brand’s goals
- Don’t overlook visual branding
- Develop your voice
- Be consistent with your topics
- Post regularly
- Promote your profiles
- Engage, engage, engage
Inspiration for us
- Prioritizing social media branding will help you connect with your target audience
- Be strategic with your efforts and you’ll get better results
- Consistency across channels is a key:
– Design elements
- Monitoring the brand online is crucial. Look for mentions of the brand and respond to both good and bad ones
- Measure the brand performance and make necessary changes. Measure ROI and attribution (where the traffic to your social accounts is coming from)
- Be prepared when things don’t go well (crisis management)
Let’s hear from you, any thoughts on this?