Ways Social Media Makes Branding Your Business Easier
In order to have a successful business in most every industry, you will need to count upon repeat customers. In order to gain this loyal following of customers, you really need a brand that sets you apart from your competitors. A brand is the perception you leave customers and those who are not yet customers as they interact with your business. Not all of branding can be controlled.
Before the internet, it was a longer and more expensive process to get the word out why your company is better than competitors and what you stand for. Today, one can use social media and social media advertising to help improve the impact and speed your branding process.
Where to Begin
Before you consider using social media for branding, it is important to have some essential pieces in place so that you are truly creating a strong brand that will garner customer loyalty and not be just another advertising jingle and logo.
Conduct a Brand Audit
You first must ascertain your customer demographics, how customers view your offering in the marketplace today and what prior branding you have already done. You will also need to fully analyze the competition and how you can differentiate from them and through what strategies.
Look at Your Value to Customers and Your Messaging
You have to examine, re-examine and establish your bottom-line philosophy through creating a mission statement and identifying your company’s values and how they will create value for customers. This will help your branding be unique.
Key Point – Your Branding Must Come Through Everywhere
One more key point to either branding a company for the first time or re-branding is that this brand must come out in every single interaction with your customer – every time they make a purchase from you and every time they view your sales literature, social media presence postings, web site, logo and color scheme of the logo. Many companies have branding campaigns and mission statements that look fine on paper; but, if it does not come through authentically to customers, it is a waste of time. Consumers today are more jaded and savvy than they are innocent and easily herded.
Branding on Social Media
Social media is an inexpensive way to broadcast the message of your branding and your product or service. Through social media, your customers can learn in more depth about your vision, mission, corporate ethics and the value your offering brings to their life. They can also see your logo, which is just a symbol of these other factors. Let’s look at this in more depth.
Proving You Have A Base
One important item that a potential customer should find on social media is the proof you are legitimate. Do you have testimonials and interactions with real and loyal customers? Who are you going to patronize as a consumer, a company with no reviews or testimonials to check or one that has many loyal followers and customers that give mostly great reviews that explain how your company does deliver the value extolled in the rest of your branding?
Refining Your Branding
The exciting thing about using social media for branding your business is that you can try new messaging and strategies and get the message out to your loyal customer base rapidly.
Targeting Your Message
There are different social media platforms. Each has a different audience. If you are engaged in business-to-business sales, you would not want to be on a social media platform, like Tumblr, that has a young audience. You would want to be on LinkedIn, where B2B commerce can flourish. Choosing your platforms helps you target your message.
Social media is a great place to engage in visual branding. You can add picture stories, color palettes and your logo to tell a story about your brand and how it provides value for consumers.
Branding Through Voice
Tweets and posts can help your customers hear the voice of your company’s culture. Also, your voice can reflect the language expected by your target demographic. It does need to be authentic, or it will be tuned out.
Branding Through Helpful Content
If your posts include helpful articles on relevant topics in your field, you can help solidify your company’s status as a leader and expert in the field. Make sure that the content contains the brand information thread as well.
If your business is a startup, and you are in competition with some heavy-hitters who have a large social media presence, you might consider using a social media influencer to help bring your brand more recognition. An influencer who is truly a believer in your product, that engages with others on social media and actively posts, has expertise in your industry and is perceived to be a leader is someone that would help your company gain a larger market share and can help with your branding. Social media makes it much easier to put the conditions in place to allow such interactions between influencers and potential customers to ensue.
The bottom line is to get your brand set up first. Then you can use social media as a multi-varied and powerful avenue for branding your business.