Social media is an expected component of today’s marketing plans. It has changed the world in countless ways. People have the opportunity to have an equal voice and instant access to a vast number of followers, friends and friends of followers & friends, etc. So, based on the reach social media can enjoy, how does one take advantage of the incredible opportunities afforded in this space to build your brand?
1. Think before you leap!
Without a focused plan and a set of goals, jumping on the social media bandwagon will likely result in disaster and disappointment. Plan your work and work your plan. What goals do you want to achieve by embracing social media? Is it a platform for your customer service to shine? A means to drive sales? Are you looking to identify brand advocates so they can help you extend your brand? Once you have your goals identified and in place, only then can you plan out your social media strategy.
2. Determine your online brand personality
How do you want to be perceived in the social world? If you have a logo & a website, you already have a “brand” but now you need a social media voice to match that brand personality.
So consider the following:
Articulate your value. Your mission. How you compare with your competition
Be sure you’re online and offline visual style & brand identity remain consistent. Don’t use different imagery or colors. That will delude & confuse your intended audience.
Be aware of the tone (your voice) used when using different social media tools. Facebook & Twitter are less formal that LinkedIn per se.
3. Decide which social media platforms are right for your business
Google+, Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter & LinkedIn are the most popular platforms but be sure to identify which ones are used by which target markets (Baby Boomers, Milleniums, Gen-X-ers , etc.). Apply the same decision making here that you did in Tip 1. Align the platform with goal (Pinterest or Facebook for videos: Twitter for customer-related communications). Remember, maintaining a presence on social media takes time and scheduling so figure out which platforms suit your company and best address the needs of your customers.