A brand is the identity and personality of a business. It’s more than a company name, and it’s certainly more than the products and services sold. Your brand is the core of your company’s image, and that core is presented in the digital world through your website, social media, and any content you create. Below are the 6 elements of a strong digital brand. Working on these elements will help your online presence become a solid representation of your company’s beliefs and help you drive increased revenue from your internet marketing activities.
The cornerstone of a strong digital brand, and of a healthy online presence, is quality content. A strong digital brand publishes content, and publishes regularly, creating everything from blog posts to eBooks, from social media updates to email newsletters. It is content that will help prospects find your brand online, position your company as a thought leader in your industry, and increase your recognition as a brand that’s contributing value to its audience. Without content, your brand is static and has little means of communicating that value to potential customers.
Strong content is critical, but that strong content will run out of steam if it’s not tailored to your buyer personas to address their needs and pain points. A buyer persona is a representation of the key buyer of your company’s products and services. It includes the demographic, psychological and behavioral components of a buyer. If you don’t know who’s buying your products and services, what barriers exist between them and the purchase, why they make the purchase, and why they would buy from you, then you can’t create content that speaks to them. If you can’t communicate to your buyer persona(s), then you won’t have a strong digital brand.
You don’t need to be on every single social network, and you don’t need to have multiple websites or blogs. But, at the very least, you should have a website and at least one social media profile, depending on your goals and buyer personas (you want to be where they are). The other reason why you want to be on multiple platforms is that search engines consider each platform a unique and high-value source of rankings, so being on multiple networks will improve search results for keywords related to your brand. Higher search engine rankings mean more visibility for your brand, and more visibility means more strength.
A strong digital brand is interconnected. Your Facebook page shouldn’t operate separately from your blog, your blog shouldn’t operate separately from your email marketing, and the list could go on. A strong digital brand promotes quality content across all its platforms, tailoring the presentation for each one. Your buyer personas are using multiple channels, maybe at the same time, but most likely at different times throughout the day. They might miss your latest blog post when you share it on Facebook, but they might notice it when shows up in their inbox as part of your email newsletter, so make sure to post multiple places.
Don’t be afraid to promote old content either, simply for the reason that some in your audience may have missed the content when it was first released, and those who have joined your audience since then never had a chance to see it. If that content isn’t outdated, then tweeting it again or including it in a resource guide on your website isn’t a bad idea – especially if the content was a hit!
Consistency means conformity in application. A strong digital brand uses similar logos, colors, and layouts across all of its platforms. Of course, you can’t change the colors of Facebook, but the cover photo and the thumbnail should reflect the color scheme that’s found on your website. Consistency also applies to the words that you use and what you discuss and present online. If you’re a hair salon, for example, and you suddenly tweeted about the U.S economy, then that would be inconsistent with your brand. If you relate the economy to the hair industry or to your salon, then that’s a little bit better. Your audience and buyer personas will come to expect certain things from you, and doing something unexpected could throw them off and have more negative consequences than positive ones.
Review and Revise
Who you are as a brand may not change, but the digital landscape changes and changes often. This means the original buyer personas you came up with five years ago may not be the same now. The social media platforms you’re on now may not work the same a year from now, or you may add one or two more networks to your portfolio that don’t exist yet. If you’re not reviewing and revising your digital brand regularly, making sure your strategy takes into account things like Facebook platform updates and Google algorithm changes, then your digital brand could lose its strength over time.
Overall, a strong digital brand is comprehensive in that it’s not just one or two things that make it effective and a favorite among prospects and customers. It’s not just the content, and it’s not just having a social media presence, and it’s not just your audience and followers. A strong digital brand is all of those things working together to help you achieve your online marketing goals, grow your business, and provide that core value that only you can deliver.
Leave a comment telling us what you think is the most important aspect of your digital brand, and how it relates to your overall branding strategy!