It’s a thick thick jungle of stories and information, and this jungle requires a strong voice if you want to be heard. But how do you keep up with all of the social media platforms, plus your blog, plus your actual business, and make them all sound like YOU? Here are 8 ways to keep your brand consistent in the Social Media wilderness.
Perhaps you have a social media team that generates, promotes, and responds with new content on a regular basis. Or maybe you have one Marketing guru that manages your online presence, or perhaps you, “Mr./Ms. I-Got-This,” manage your digital marketing along with other, perhaps several other, roles within a business. Whether you’re working to be consistent across varying avenues of communication, or you need your staff, each with individual styles and voices, to be on the same digital page, here are 8 ways to stay consistent.
1 ) Use Your Branded Colors, Imagery, Fonts, and Taglines
The colors and look of your brand were chosen for a reason, and the more these visual cues are used in conjunction with your voice, the stronger the connection you’ll be making with your audience. For example, I’ll bet you can identify these brands by their trademark color alone.
2 ) Create a Brand Style Guide
This document is a guideline for how your brand is to be presented, beginning with your logo in all its variations, your colors, and overall look. You can then go a step further and expand it to touch on your brand traits, your brand personality, and the main messages you’d like to get across. Questions to ask yourself as you develop a Brand Style Guide:
- How do we want our logo to appear in different contexts? In color vs. black and white? On different colored backgrounds?
- What changes to the logo are not acceptable?
- How should our name appear in different contexts? When do we use the logo versus the name of the company?
- What colors do we want to use for our collateral, and are there secondary colors we can use as accents? (Include Pantone color id’s for print consistency.)
- When people interact with us, how do we want them to feel? What emotions do we want to evoke?
- If we could name 3-4 traits we want to convey about our business, what would they be?
- What types of images and icons speak well for us?
Get it down on paper, and share that paper with anyone who speaks for your brand. When things start to stray, or you’re not sure if something fits in with the company, come back to this. And by the way, revisit and revise this on a regular basis. Once you’ve collected your branding thoughts, consider that there are many ways to communicate your main messages, and many tones that can be used. For example, your elevator pitch will sound different from your formal presentation, or your ad on Facebook, or your latest tweet.
3 ) Snatch Up Your Account Names on the Various Social Media Playgrounds
Even if you’re not sure whether the newest social fad is for you, it may be a good idea to search for your company name and claim the handle you want.
4 ) If Your Name is Already Taken, Try to Find a Version that Can Be Used Across All Sites
If you are Ana + Mary’s Cookies on Facebook, don’t start using AnaandMary on Twitter, or your fans may have trouble finding you.
5 ) Interlink Your Social Profiles
Put links to all of them on your website, and even in your email signatures.
6 ) Tell Your Story
We’ve heard it a hundred times, but it’s so easy to speak to the world in the most general terms possible and present ourselves amidst a mess of buzz words. But behind a brand is a story. It’s a company who was started by someone or some people, in a town, with a goal. Since then, employees have joined in the parade and made it what it is from day to day – an entity with a history, a future, and a journey. The more people connect with the personality of a company, the more engaged and loyal they are.
7 ) Share Content That Benefits Your Brand
Don’t feel compelled to share the old videos, articles, or blog posts that date you, or that aren’t consistent with your current brand. If you have existing collateral that has always served you well, use it and promote it, but don’t use mediocre content just because you have it. You know which ones I’m talking about.
8 ) Put Your PR Hat On
Be ready to respond to the Social Media world – good or bad. The name of the Social Media game is engagement, so be prepared to leverage those comments as yet another opportunity to speak from the brand.
Need a boost with your Social Media strategies or getting your name out there? Cazarin can help. Let’s get started.